Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett signed a bill to widen the right to use deadly force in self-defense.
The bill, enacted by the PA Senate last week, will expand the state's castle doctrine to allow the right to use a gun or other deadly force in self-defense in situations outside a person's home or business. Currently, the use of deadly force is not justifiable if the person can safely retreat, except when the threat is made inside his or her home or business.
The legislation, signed during a private ceremony in the Republican governor's office at the Capitol, also limits certain civil liability in some cases for people who act within the guidelines. It goes into effect in 60 days.
The National Rifle Association's executive director, Chris Cox, called it a way for "law-abiding citizens" to "protect themselves when criminals attack without fear of being second-guessed by an overzealous prosecutor."
Rep. Scott Perry, R-York, sponsored the house bill and said he was gladdened by its passage and Corbett's signing it into law.
"A criminal should never have an advantage over a citizen who abides by the rules of decent society, and today we finally achieved the goal of returning the right of self-defense to the law-abiding," Perry said in a statement.
In other words: Pennsylvanians are allowed the natural right to protect themselves. It's sad that we have to celebrate such a thing in the so-called land of the free.