If one kills protecting the family from an armed intruder is this justified?

Note that Christ encountered soldiers in the New Testament and at no point is recorded as telling them been such was wrong. Absolute pacifism is not a Christian doctrine, not needlessly starting or provoking wars or oppressing others is a reasonable proposition but even Christ is described as one who makes war (and it’s not meant in a metaphorical way) in scripture.

I reiterate that it is wrong theology to claim that we are required to “tolerate as best we can” an assault.

Take it to an extreme: are you required to tolerate an assault which ends in a sexual assault on your daughter? Following Christ need not mean becoming a potted plant in the face of evil.

This same argument was used in support of slavery.

You can argue with the ECFs then.

The fact of the matter is the Church does not teach pacifism. It does not teach that you cannot defend yourself, even with deadly force.

The early Church fathers differed in their views on those issues and did not form an absolutist bloc regarding self defence. You are entitled to your view but I would thank you to not poison the well by throwing in a reference to slavery.

Here is Pope John Paul II on the subject

Moreover, “legitimate defense can be not only a right but a grave duty for someone responsible for another’s life, the common good of the family or of the State” Unfortunately it happens that the need to render the aggressor incapable of causing harm sometimes involves taking his life. In this case, the fatal outcome is attributable to the aggressor whose action brought it about, even though he may not be morally responsible because of a lack of the use of reason.

The question is this, why is the life of the assailant more important than yours?

You have a right to defend yourself.

If you don’t protect yourself and he ends up killing you who’s to say that he won’t be coming after another member of your household?

The problem is not the individuals responsibility in one situation. It is the policy of the society to allow armed defense that was designed for times of warfare, as a general rule.

I wonder if anyone has ever been charged and convicted of killing in the context of self defense? I don’t see how the law could support such a conviction. The gun is permitted to the private citizen without any real conditions. Basically the law requires no training in its use, no tactical or psychological training in crime situations, no qualifications in the legal, ethical or moral aspects of shooting another citizen, no strict accountability around the use of the weapon, no requirement for backup. In the military and the police, there are many more checks and balances that ensure that taking life is the last resort and they are subject to justifying the deaths they are responsible for according to procedure. A private citizen is told to assess the situation themselves and shoot according to your own fear level.

It is the overall policy of permitting peacetime guns for self defense that needs to be subject to examination as to whether it constitutes ‘legitimate defense’… not individual situations that occur within this policy. I cannot see where any individual could legally be convicted for defending himself with his gun. There are no procedures for him other than his level of fear.

The Second Amendment has nothing to do with armed defense in times of warfare. It was designed for one reason and one reason only: for defense against tyranny. The Second Amendment is fine as it is. You are never going to get people to give up their guns, plain and simple. The states will never go along with it.

After Sandy Hook, when Obama was ramping up his anti-gun rhetoric, there was a bill in my state just waiting to be passed that said that Indiana would not enforce federal gun laws and any federal agents trying to enforce federal gun laws would be escorted out of the state. My state will never give up the right to bear arms and there are many others that feel the same way.

How do you envisage this national government tyranny would come about? The founding Fathers specifically reacted against the possible might of the British empire in regaining control through force. Is that a realistic prospect nowadays? Does it warrant the arming of civilians to that end?

All you have to do is read the Founding Fathers’ writings to see their thoughts on the Second Amendment. The right to bear arms was given to the people to defend against tyranny, plain and simple. It wasn’t to defend against armed invasion from a foreign power. It was to defend against the tyranny of our own government.

But that’s what I don’t get. You are your own government. One year you have people plucked from the same streets you walk elected to represent the rest of you and the common good of all. If they show signs of tyranny, you go back to the polls and elect in someone from among you who is more suitable to represent you and the common good of all.

How can there ever end up with ‘a government’ verses ‘the people’ dichotomy in such an environment? The government is no longer made up of representatives of the English crown. Surely a good percentage of ‘the people’ would support the government over the remaining percentage of ‘the people’? That would mean outright civil war against each other with your guns… not ‘a government’ verses ‘the people’ battle.

The antidote to tyranny in the modern West is a well regulated police force and military. They more safely represent ‘the people’ against the tyranny of invaders or violent special interest groups. Your goverment are not in either of those precarious catagories by virtue of your power to elect who you want.

The provision for mass arming of the civilian population as the antidote to tyranny is highly detrimental to the many thousands killed and wounded by their presence each year, the general feeling of security among people keeping guns in their purse and under their bed and the overall common good. It needs amending.

Except politics has become a career, with the same people elected year after year. It takes money to run for office. The odds of the average joe getting elected is slim to none. People vote for whoever can give them the most “free” stuff. Politics divides people, as can be seen in American today. America is very divided politically.

How can there ever end up with ‘a government’ verses ‘the people’ dichotomy in such an environment? The government is no longer made up of representatives of the English crown. Surely a good percentage of ‘the people’ would support the government over the remaining percentage of ‘the people’? That would mean outright civil war against each other with your guns… not ‘a government’ verses ‘the people’ battle.

Yes, it would probably mean civil war. Just like the Revolutionary War was a civil war. There were colonists that supported the Crown.

The antidote to tyranny in the modern West is a well regulated police force and military. They more safely represent ‘the people’ against the tyranny of invaders or violent special interest groups. Your goverment are not in either of those precarious catagories by virtue of your power to elect who you want.

Except the police and military are agents of the state and they take orders from the state. The police and military are the state. The best defense against tyranny is an armed populace, plain and simple. Why would you want the state to be the only ones who can have guns?

Who regulates the regulators?

The provision for mass arming of the civilian population as the antidote to tyranny is highly detrimental to the many thousands killed and wounded by their presence each year, the general feeling of security among people keeping guns in their purse and under their bed and the overall common good. It needs amending.

The Constitution gives us two ways to amend it then. I highly doubt the Second Amendment will ever be amended or abolished. You are not going to get people to give up their guns and you are not going to get the states to go along with. If the government ever tries to ban guns, it will be civil war. They know this, which is why they have never tried it.

They try to restrict it but, thank God, the states have more power in that regard. As it should be. If you don’t like guns, then go live in a state that doesn’t allow the people to carry guns.

Lactantius and Tertullian were the only two fathers who were absolute pacifists. None of the other fathers adopted that position and the church has always taught that a life could be licitly taken in self defense.

Ender

True; this is something the church has never taught. Quite the opposite in fact.* Wherefore Ambrose says (De Offic. i, 36) that “whoever does not ward off a blow from a fellow man when he can, is as much in fault as the striker”; and he quotes the example of Moses. *(Aquinas)
Ender

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