The tragic death of an armed citizen who tried to prevent two homicidal gunmen from taking innocent lives as part of an outlet of anti police frustrations has largely been glossed over by the media. Most of the TV watchers in the nation haven’t heard much about anything but the cops who died before that.

Alternative sources of commentary, however, have no problem speaking what they believe to be the truth. This is certainly true of Christopher Cantwell, who wrote a piece not long after the incident occurred. In his piece, he states:

“I’d have a hard time coming up with a historical reference to any revolution that didn’t involve people killing government agents. In fact, I’m pretty sure that’s part and parcel of the deal.”

Grigg responds to this by stating in no uncertain terms, cops aren’t too be touched by libertarian hands until they raise a weapon. His piece, entitled Shooting Someone in the Back of the Head is NOT Applied Non-Aggression, takes the stance that the couple that gunned down the innocent civilian was just as wrong in doing that as in killing two cops they’d shot earlier in a diner. Grigg writes:

Not all violence is aggressive, and defensive violence – including lethal violence to repel criminal aggression by government agents — is morally acceptable. Unless we are going to practice situational collectivism, we should accept that aggression is defined by action, not by identity: It isn’t the who or the whom, but the *what* that matters. Police officers breaking into a house at midnight and threatening to kill those residing therein are committing aggression; police officers buying lunch from a willing merchant are not.

There’s Aggression, in the classical sense, and respecting its etymology, is purely initiation of force. Any alternate interpretation is borne of modern definitions, adopted long after nonaggression was principally established. This means that if someone either initiates force, or is a party to it, including receiving the spoils of aggression, that any returning of force by the victim is defensive. When Grigg brings up the case of Regina Tasca, and cites that as an aggression extreme libertarians would shoot her for, he completely misses the idea of nonagression. By a mile. What she did was not aggressive by the definition adopted before the word was bastardized. Literally, the word “aggressive” is a contraction of a- and -gress, meaning, to move against. It’s word roots are Latin, from aggredi “to approach and attack” (see: the wonderful etymonline). I’d venture to say that she didn’t “approach” or “attack” the officers beating Ramon Perez. I think she probably defended Ramon. If you conflate defense with aggression, I’m not sure what I can even say to that.

Now to the keystone of the argument. Since, as many Austrian economists and libertarian minds have stated, taxation is theft, and recurring taxation is tantamount to slavery, cops who take a tax paid paycheck, and use it to bring down the force of the State, are aggressors, and whatever defense a tax victim wants to take is acceptable. This deals nicely with your “gunning down welfare recipients” trope, as the way you put it, they’re on the same level as the cops who might kill, kidnap, or brutalize the majority of them based almost solely on their race. This failure to ethically separate members of the private and public sectors of a State-controlled economy might say more about Grigg than I’ve time to let on.

By taking the paycheck, and “doing their job” aggression is not only a cop’s title, but their action taken. The fact that they exist simply to carry out state orders is as irrelevant to this case as it was in the trials of Nuremberg, and I think it’s probably intellectual dishonesty, even with Grigg, to think  that he wouldn’t have shot a WW II era Nazi at a diner with a “consenting merchant”, because he was eating.

Just remember: “Just Doing His Job” is not a defense, but an excuse — and one, ideally, to be shattered as regularly as possible.