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Legalized Inequality – Right To Self Preservation

Woman cites Metis heritage as reason for light sentence
One of several cases: New legislation lets judges consider native background

A Vancouver woman convicted of manslaughter in the stabbing death of her common-law husband plans to argue at her sentencing hearing that she should not go to prison, in part because she is a Metis.

When Deanna Emard appears in court next Monday, her lawyer and supporters will urge the court to invoke recent federal legislation that instructs judges to take into consideration an offender’s aboriginal background when handing down sentences.

“I’m going to ask the court to consider it as a mitigating circumstance,” said Peter Wilson, her lawyer. “I think it’s something the court is going to have to take into consideration because my client is an aboriginal offender and that’s the specific reference that’s contained within the [criminal] code.”

The Vancouver Metis Association also plans to make an argument in court. “She is really a good person,” said Paul Stevenson, the association president. “There would be absolutely no benefit to Canada for her to be incarcerated.”

The new law is designed to keep natives out of jail by giving sentencing judges the leeway to consider their background, and the systemic problems faced by the nation’s aboriginal people.

Emard is one of a growing number of convicts making use of the law to try avoid jail time for serious crimes.

The first test case for the law went to the Supreme Court of Canada last month. Jamie Gladue, convicted of manslaughter and sent to prison for three years for killing her husband with a knife to the chest, argued in an appeal to the court that she should have received a lighter sentence because of her “Indianness.”

In One Year, Gun Owners Stopped Hundreds Of Criminals, Saved Countless Lives

While Obama quotes the more than 30,000 gun deaths in a year — omitting that 60 percent are suicides, 6 percent are gang related, 3 percent are accidents, and the vast majority of the rest occur in urban areas — TheDCNF found that a noteworthy number of kids, the elderly, and women successfully defended themselves against criminals by use of gun fire.

Most often, when people used guns to defend themselves, it was in the home. Of the 194 cases where location is known, gun owners used firearms to defend the home 114 times. They pulled the trigger in a place of business or in public about 40 times each.

In many cases, it’s unclear how many potential victims would be saved. For example, if a man robbed a convenience store at gunpoint but was stopped by a man with a gun, it may not be documented how many people were in the store who could have been harmed.

Handguns were by far the most popular firearm of choice for self defense, with more than half of defenders using them. The DCNF obtained the stories from and independently verified the data.

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