Monday, September 25, 2006

Off-Point: Shape-Shifting Goat

From the AP News Service:

A Nigerian murder suspect accused of killing his brother with an ax told police investigators he actually attacked a goat, which was only later magically transformed into his sibling's corpse, officials said Thursday.
My take on this:

IANAL, but I don't see why it is not a credible defense in the murder trial.

If I was his Barrister-at-law, I would advocate that he should be set free with the Defense of One's Property rights enshrined in both Nigerian customary law, and English common law, in whatever Assizes, at which, I assume, he is being prosecuted.

You have to remember, he does not have to prove that the guy was a goat; he only has to prove that he thought the guy was a goat, and a magical deadly goat at that. This is an important point, and probably the most pivotal in his defense.

The most important point is that he thought he was in danger of losing his life. This is actually the crux of his defense: that he thought that he was in imminent danger of losing his life. The law allows you to take action, even using deadly force to repel such danger.

While it is doubtless not very relevant, the Deadly Force Institute here in the US, advocates the use of deadly force for the repulsion of all incidents of imminent personal danger. It is also the belief of both the NRA and Deadly Force Institute that these protections be extended to trespass against property as well. That is, however, a subject for another post.

Moreover, he should have as his witnesses, fellow Isseluku villagers who would attest to the fact that the decedent was, in fact, a shape-shifting wizard. This list should also include the head Baba ‘Llawo, or medicine man, who would also testify to the powers of the dead. It goes without saying the dead man’s victims should also be compelled to testify.

Apropos, such a defense, based on both parts of law, in all likelihood, will pass judicial muster even in Christian Southern Nigeria.

In closing, I should caution against the contemptuous behavior of us Christians against these morons pagans. Just because these rubes people believe in stupid, farcical absurdities in idol worship, does not mean that we, as Children of The Living God, should deride their beliefs.

It is, you know, not nice.

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