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Florida Legislature (2013)

John was invited to present a speech on Stand Your Ground. The controversial law was enacted to revoke the reasonable duty to retreat in all circumstances. John’s speech basically focused on how this encourages violence over reasonableness and promotes people to use prejudice and unreasonable thoughts and ideals to defend themselves- sometimes where deadly force isn’t remotely warranted.

One problem, Phillips presented, was the relative subjective interpretation allowed with the law and how it hinders fairness from prosecution to jury instruction. The backbone of this country is the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and the 6th Amendment guarantees victims that a jury of peers will determine the rights and responsibilities of someone who commits violence. This law does away with that.