One of the men lifted his shirt to display a handgun tucked into the waist of his pants, [Lt. James] Espinoza said. Moments later, five or six other men began beating up the 37-year-old coach. One of the men used a set of brass knuckles, Espinoza said.

(full story)

What would a reasonable person conclude?

A group of 6 or so men come up to you, with obvious ill intent (I’m sure they didn’t have smiles and rainbows on their faces, given the backstory). One flashes a gun at you. Then they start beating on you.

I would think any reasonable person would conclude the coach was in grave danger, that his life was at stake. If you wouldn’t reach this same conclusion, please tell me why.

Seeing the attack, the coach’s wife pulled out a gun and fired a warning shot into the air, Burris said.

The coach broke free of his attackers and went to his car for a second gun, which he pointed at various people in the crowd, Espinoza said.

I believe the wife’s response to be reasonable. I don’t think it was tactically sound nor safe (insert discussion of why it’s bad to shoot into the air, why warning shots are a bad idea, why it’s good to receive education in not just marksmanship but also threat management and legal implications of use of force, etc.), but generally speaking her response was reasonable. As well, I believe the coach’s response was reasonable as well. Again, I don’t think it was tactically sound (insert discussion of why it’s important to have gun on person and not stored far away, although in his case he may have had to do it for “youth coaching” reasons). Nevertheless, in the eyes of the law, the response by the man and woman are considered reasonable.

The coach who was involved in the clash and pulled out a gun after being attacked has been relieved of his coaching duties, [Jeremy Burris, director of the Tigers football program] said. His wife was also dismissed from involvement with the team.

“He’s been a great role model” for kids, Burris said of the coach, who has been with the Tigers for a few years and worked in the league for at least 15 years. “He’s really helped.”

Despite that background, Burris said, “you can’t take weapons out around children.”

Facepalm. Major facepalm.

Why can’t you take weapons out around children? Please, Mr. Burris, explain your statement.

“Nothing like this has ever happened in this organization,” said Burris, who said he has been affiliated with the Tigers for 20 years. “We pride ourselves on zero tolerance for anything that goes on.”

Ah, the beloved – and brain-dead – “zero tolerance” policy.

Was either the coach or his wife pointing their guns at the children? Were they threatening the children? Were they endangering the children?

Or have you considered that the coach was getting the living tar beat out of him? Have you considered what would have happened to this man if he and his wife did not take out a weapon around children? Maybe that “great role model” would be in the hospital, or dead. What good would that have done the world, to lose someone that’s contributed to the betterment of our youth for 15 years? Please explain how such a good man becoming crippled or dead would be a better thing.

Have you considered the message your action sends to those very youth?

That defending yourself is a good way to lose your job. Your choice is to lose your job or lose your life.

That hiding behind blind policy is an unthinking and cowardly thing to do. There is no consideration of the man’s years of service and demonstrated commitment. No, because this man was committed to continue living so he could continue to serve your community’s youth for another 15 years, that commitment deserves punishment.

If he’s “really helped”, why don’t you try to help him as a small return for all his years of service.

Is this what our society is coming to?

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