“I was in fear for my life.” When a police officer on trial for murder uses this defense for killing a citizen, more often than not he walks out of the courtroom, free. Never mind that he — yes, almost always a man — has been trained to keep his head in emotionally charged situations, and to use deadly force only as the last resort.
But when a woman, who has been abused beyond bearing, claims this was finally her only choice — to kill her partner — far too often the “justice” system finds a way to condemn her act of desperation and imprison her. The excellent front-page article in a recent Sunday Chicago Tribune brought this vividly to life.
Kudos to Annie Sweeney, the reporter, and to the editors of the Tribune for doing what only print journalism can do: bring lengthy, in-depth stories to a wide audience that needs to hear them. More power to you!