Gaetz Introduces the ’Stand Your Ground Act of 2021’ to ‘Abolish Duty to Retreat Everywhere’

Rep. Matt Gaetz introduced a bill to federalize Florida’s stand your ground law. If passed, law-abiding citizens would be able to use deadly force against assailants without a duty to retreat in all 50 states. (Photo: OAN)

Congressman Matt Gaetz (FL-01) announced this week the introduction of the “Stand Your Ground Act of 2021.”

Per the language of the bill, it would allow one to use deadly force if one reasonably believes it’s “necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the imminent commission of a forcible felony.” 

Forcible felonies are generally crimes involving rape, murder, arson, kidnapping, robbery among others.  

Moreover, the legislation would remove one’s “duty to retreat” so long as the individual was not “engaged in a criminal activity and is in a place where he or she has a right to be.”  

Gaetz referenced the Kyle Rittenhouse case as part of the impetus for the Act.   

SEE ALSO: Know When to Stand Your Ground and When You Have a Duty to Retreat (Part I – Stand Your Ground)

“Like Kyle Rittenhouse, every American has the right to defend their life from an attacker,” Congressman Gaetz said in a press release.  

“If someone tries to kill you, you should have the right to return fire and preserve your life. Let’s reaffirm in law what exists in our Constitution and in the hearts of our fellow Americans,” he continued.  “Abolish the legal duty of retreat everywhere.”

SEE ALSO: Know When to Stand Your Ground and When You Have a Duty to Retreat (Part II – Duty to Retreat)

At least 12 states impose a duty to retreat when an individual can do so with complete safety, according to Wikipedia.  

Those states include Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, and Wisconsin.

Reps. Louie Gohmert (TX-01), Paul Gosar (AZ-04), Marjorie Taylor Greene (GA-14), Markwayne Mullin (OK-02), Greg Steube (FL-17), and Randy Weber (TX-14) are co-sponsoring the bill.

With Democrat majorities in both chambers, it’s unlikely that the “Stand Your Ground Act of 2021″ will gain serious traction, as Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation, noted.

“I am in favor of any law that expands the right of self-defense and this ‘stand your ground’ law fits that bill,” said Gottlieb in an email to GunsAmerica. “The problem is Nancy Peloci and her anti-gun rights Democrats control Congress and will never let it get out on committee for a floor vote!”

If things change, we’ll keep you posted.

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About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 23 comments… add one }
  • Ohio Bill December 18, 2021, 11:35 pm

    Gaetz voted for the NDAA which introduces a military “Red Flag” law into the U.S. Code. A military Judge can order the confiscation of a servicemember’s firearms if he has been accused of criminal conduct. If you’re going to defend individual rights, defend them across the board, not just for your political benefit.
    I just wrote my congressman, another RINO, that I’m done with him.

  • jake December 17, 2021, 10:56 pm

    to each his own.

  • paul I'll call you what I want 1st Amendment December 17, 2021, 8:48 pm

    Damn fine idea! Stop giving the advantage to the criminals! As for you criminal lovers, one day your thinking will bite you in the ass!!!

  • KMacK December 17, 2021, 2:13 pm

    Gaetz is in trouble and I suspect this “Necessary” bill is just his way of camouflaging his dalliances with underaged females.
    He’s done this before and will do it again.
    So don’t trust this thing…

  • Mauser6863 December 17, 2021, 10:16 am

    Sometimes, it just cracks me up how DUMB Congressmen and their staffs can be.

    The entire reason the “Stand Your Ground” and “Castle Doctrine” concepts gained support was to protect women from domestic abusers and to protect their children.

    In a duty to retreat situation, an abused woman was required, under laws/traditions crafted in the Middle Ages, to retreat from the attacker, The problem will this of course are many. If you are being beaten and abused by a drugged-up or drunk man, you are supposed to run away and leave your kids in the house? Or just stay and take the beating and hope he doesn’t kill you or the kids,,,this time.

    Of course the side benefit was to make it, so any all person could defend themselves without having to retreat from an attacker first.

    If they wanted the bill passed or wanted the DemoRats to vote against it, they should have called it the Woman and Children Protection Act. As it stands, this bill is DOA and may not even get voted upon.

  • Eric December 17, 2021, 9:26 am

    It seems odd to me that Matt Gaetz would sponsor a bill that clarifies people may more readily shoot rapists, what with him being creditably accused of raping multiple children.

    Granted, he was paying for it. But if your defense to child rape accusations is that you were actually paying a child prostitute, you have what I’d call a nuanced defense.

    The co-sponsors of this jive-ass nonsense are quite the rogues gallery. Gaetz, Gilbert, Gosart, and Greene – but where is Boebert?

    • Eric December 17, 2021, 9:28 am

      Gohmert, not Gilbert. My apologies to the nutter from the 1st district.

    • Kane December 17, 2021, 11:08 am

      “with him being creditably accused of raping multiple children.”

      Even though I am NOT sure I recognize all the words you have chosen in that short sentence your intended meaning is clear enough. So, what are the details of the supposed victims circumstances and identity? Who are his accusers and where are the details of the accusations? The unnamed “children” would have to be several years older and able to serve as witnesses against Gaetz if they did indeed exist, where are they? What has happened to Goldberg? There has been no credible accusations leveled only vague rumors that have lingered for political advantage.

      Are those type of details not important with lefties like you “Eric”?

      • D.J. December 20, 2021, 1:00 pm

        For the neocommunists in our country today ,
        “ it’s not the nature of the evidence , it’s the
        seriousness of the charge .”

        I once knew of a man , that said that on a nearly
        regular basis .

  • Bill December 17, 2021, 9:14 am

    We all have the common law right of self-defense and need not read an attacker’s mind before using deadly force. No one needs to wait until being shot at or killed before responding to imminent danger.
    No one should be made to flee the protection of one’s home in the face of mortal danger. Second-guessing can get you killed, ask any police officer what they would do in that situation.

  • Bones December 17, 2021, 8:09 am

    Wait..wait..wait…I was under the impression “ Jesus” teaches “ Christian’s “ to turn de utter cheek?? Instead of killing ? This Proves Christianity is a LIE ..is FAKE..just like you so called” patriots” are!🤣😂🤣🤡🤡🤡

    • Yu December 17, 2021, 2:55 pm

      The false narrative continues. You are questioning whether to believe certain passages of the Bible are more important than others. One then can cherry pick passages that condemn homosexuality. Will you ever quote them too? Hint: look in Deuteronomy.

    • Kane December 17, 2021, 8:16 pm

      Maybe you suscribe to a wrong interpretation to the “turn the othere cheek.”

    • yamaholic December 18, 2021, 12:05 am

      you’re obviously off your meds…best get those in ya before you do something dumber than posting this comment :p

    • Hondo December 29, 2021, 8:28 am

      Hey Boner, sit down and shut up you child, adults are talking here. You might learn something you dummy.

  • Bob December 17, 2021, 8:07 am

    First of all in stead of sponsoring bills in congress why isn’t this POS in jail. He’s a child molester. Second, who hasn’t done something stupid after having too many drinks. So just because someone comes up to you when they’re pissed off at something you did it’s OK to kill them? If standing your ground meant duke it out with someone that’s fine but to blow someone’s brains out because you’re scared is messed up. And what about someone who needs meds to keep them from acting like a threat. Is it ok to blow they’re brains out because they scared you?

    • Darnright December 17, 2021, 10:36 am

      The answer to all of your questions would be YES. If someone is a threat to you then you should be able to act according to the situation. O I was drunk or off my meds is not a legal excuse.

      • yamaholic December 18, 2021, 12:07 am

        exactly…stand your ground doesn’t mean you can shoot people at random, it means if someone is threatening your life you don’t need to run away in order to be able to legally defend yourself – it’s certainly not a shooting gallery free for all like the left is making it out to be

    • Kane December 17, 2021, 8:25 pm

      Where is the evidence against Geatz? If the accusing Dems had proof of a crime then why have the details of the case been based on merely innuenda? Why is the public NOT being protected and Gaetz punished if there are real victims of real crimes? Both the piublic and Gaetz deserve a speedy trial but that never happened.

  • Rob December 17, 2021, 4:36 am

    I do not support such legislation that seeks to reaffirm inherent, natural rights possessed by all free human beings (self-defense, and self-preservation) and that are already recognized by the U.S. Constitution.

    When one does so, one is admitting that inalienable rights are not inalienable and that the U.S. Constitution is a dead letter.

  • survivor50 December 16, 2021, 10:38 am

    ” DUTY TO RETREAT ” … we used to call that ” DESERTING , RUNNING AWAY FROM A FIGHT ” !!!

    That’s not a ” DUTY ” … it’s cowardice… and you sitting there in your OWN home… being attacked…

    • Mauser6863 December 17, 2021, 10:26 am

      Unfortunately with Communists and Socialists in control of many aspects of the judiciary, “Common Sense” and “What is Right” have little bearing on their conduct.

      Stand your ground by statute (30 states plus PR)
      ▮ Stand your ground by court decision (8 states plus CNMI)
      ▮ Duty to retreat except in your home (MA, MD, ME, MN, NJ, NY, RI)
      ▮ Duty to retreat except in your home or workplace (CT, DE, HI, NE)
      ▮ Duty to retreat except in your home or vehicle or workplace (WI, GU)
      ▮ Middle-ground approach (DC)
      ▮ No settled rule (AS, VI)

      So if you are in any of these places that have unclear standards, you may be prosecuted for protecting your life and the lives of others.

  • robert A anderson December 15, 2021, 12:24 pm

    I am a former us army military police . i am 82 years old and in very good shape
    I feel due to the seriousness of today’s activity of crime and violence this would
    be fully supported among our family and business here in my town

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