No woman should obtain a restraining order unless she believes it will help her circumstance no mater what police may say. The fact that so many of these murderers also commit suicide tells us something. It tells us that refusing to accept rejection is more important to them than life itself. By the time they reach this point are they really going to be deterred by a court order? A glib response is that the temporary restraining order can’t make things worse.
But here’s the rub. The restraining order does hurt by convincing the woman that she is safe. The bottom line is that there is really only one good reason to get a restraining order in the case of wife abuse. And that is that the woman believes the man will honor it and leave her alone.
If a victim or a professional in the system gets a restraining order to stop someone from committing murder they have probably applied the wrong strategy.
Gavin de Becker
The Gift of Fear and Other Survival Signals that Protect Us From Violence
[This is an excellent book. It was recommended to me by Rolf (and here). Ignore the few times Becker drops some anti-gun nonsense into it. With his personal history I almost give him a pass. Everyone I have convinced to read (or listen to) this book have told me it was awesome.
The last sentence it the money quote. If someone is not deterred by the penalties associated with murder you can be absolutely certain they will not be deterred by the penalties associated with the violation of a restraining order. The only method of prevention is to make it physically impossible to commit the murder. This gives us only three options to save the life of the innocent victim:
- The perpetrator is incarcerated or executed prior to assault.
- The intended victim cannot be found by the perpetrator.
- Physical force is used to defend the innocent victim before the assault has caused permanent injury or death.
We do not have a Department of PreCrime so the first option is off the table.
The second option is extremely difficult, expensive, and requires a very challenging change in lifestyle if you have a smart and determined pursuer. The physical and emotional costs associated with this option may be out of the reach of many people.
The third option requires people with guns. If they cannot afford hiring others to protect them then they will have to protect themselves. There is no substitute for a gun. Embedding multiple jacketed hollow-points in an attacker is not a guarantee that a victim will escape injury, or even survive, but it does dramatically improve the odds.
No anti-gun person can sincerely claim they are concerned about the safety of women who are being pursued by people intent upon violence unless they value the safety of the attacker more than that of the intended victim. These people either have an extraordinarily warped and dysfunctional sense of morality and/or they are incapable of rational thought.—Joe]