To Bear Arms: Consequences of justifiable homicide


It was a case of justifiable homicide, the kind of situation that the U.S. gun lobby uses to justify gun ownership. But what happened to Johnny Slaughter after he fatally shot a home intruder never made it into the debates on gun control. Today's documentary looks at the complications that linger after a swift act of self-defence.

Documentary: To Bear Arms

It didn't take long for U.S. President Barack Obama to push gun control to the top of his second-term priority list. Even before his inauguration ... after a mass school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut ... lawmakers on Capitol Hill were debating the sale and use of firearms.

The negotiations have divided many in the United States -- a country that is said to have the most heavily armed citizenry in the world. Although yesterday, a report in The New York Times cited a series of surveys that suggest a four-decade decline in the percentage of American households with guns.

 Still, the debate over gun ownership rages on. Critics say owning a gun only increases the risk of homicides. Gun owners cite the need for protection.

Today, we explore what it actually means to shoot someone in self-defense. Freelance journalist Sarah Richards brings us the story of one man who pulled the trigger on an intruder. You'll hear real 911 calls from other Americans in similar situations in Sarah Richard's documentary To Bear Arms.

* Please note, what you're about to hear contains very graphic details that will be disturbing for some ... Please use your discretion. This story is not for young children.

Music Bridge

Artist: Chris Velan
CD: Twitter, Buzz, Howl
Cut: # 2, Long Way From Home
Label: Mutation
Spine: MM 1101

Mail: Is Celibacy Realistic?

As the Catholic Church prepares for a new Pope, many followers are raising long-standing issues they want the Church to address. Among other things, there have been renewed calls to drop the vow of celibacy for priests. On Friday, we looked at how realistic it is for anyone to lead a celibate life, through the eyes of people who have chosen that path.

That conversation prompted Randall Perry to tweet this:

Catholics require a marriage course for engaged couples. Married priests might be better equipped to instruct them.

And Arthur Evans of Thunder Bay, Ontario offered these thoughts:

The celibate life is not Biblical. In fact in his first letter to Timothy, St Paul says that a Bishop should be married once and that a deacon should also be married. The Bible tells us the reason for this is that they cannot manage the church if they can't manage their family. The Roman Catholic Church will never solve its problems until it gets back to the Bible.

If you have anything to say about what you hear on this program, we want to hear it. Tweet us @thecurrentcbc. Or via Facebook. Call us anytime at 1 877 287 7366. Or email us from our website,

And remember, we're looking for your hitch-hiking stories. If you've had a hitch-hiking experience -- good or bad -- call and tell us about it. 1 877 287 7366.

Other segments from today's show:

Should employers accommodate shift workers with childcare needs?
Bangladesh war crimes trials stir old tensions

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