“Just because something is legal, it doesn’t make it right”

Those words were spoken by New Haven Mayor John DeStefano, Jr. in response to the recent arrest of a citizen carrying a gun, a story that has been prominent here for a few days.  It is important to understand what the Mayor said.

We have always been a country of laws.  It is how we conduct our lives.  It forms the parameters of our dealings with each other and with our government.  From those laws, we know what we can and cannot do.  To suggest, as the Mayor does, that our laws can be ignored in the name of “rightness” fosters two separate concepts.

The first, tells our citizens that laws can, and in some cases perhaps, should be ignored.

But, we have a procedure for that in this country.  It is called amending our laws via our duly constituted legislatures, and within the confines of our constitution.  Ignoring a law in the name of “rightness” is not an option.

The second is even more insidious.

What is “right”, and who defines it?

If not our legisltures, than who?  Does it change from day to day, mayor to mayor, president to president?  Is it something so elastic that, over time, “right” simply becomes whatever those in power deem it to be?  And, how will we know what is “right” if we cannot count on our laws to establish that for us?

This is the beginning of the gradual road to anarchy.

Laws will be followed until they become inconvenient.  Then “right” will take over…whatever that may be.


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The Sound Off Sister was an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and special trial attorney for the Department of Justice, Criminal Division; a partner in the Florida law firm of Shutts & Bowen, and an adjunct professor at the University of Miami, School of Law. The Sound Off Sister offers frequent commentary concerning legislation making its way through Congress, including the health reform legislation passed in early 2010.


  1. Gary J on August 9, 2012 at 7:28 pm

    ?Obama has all his little commies working for him 24/7 . Say what you like, do as you please and the other side can prove them wrong no matter what the truth.

  2. cherwin on August 9, 2012 at 7:30 pm

    Destefano is an ass. He does make up laws as he goes along. What the hell is this state and this country going to . Obama has made “anything goes” the law of the land. There are more violent crimes since he started passing out freebies to everyone. There is no respect or gratitude for getting something for nothing. Instead it is an open door for a free for all — more to spend on? guns, drugs, clothes, booze, hair, nails, etc. etc. and then go out at night and join your gang with all your new duds.?
    It has been proven time and again that giving away?things for free never works. It never has it never will. I keep screaming in my head over and over again, “If you don’t change expectations and behaviors for?able bodied people on welfare, you might as well through the money out over the Grand Cany0n.”?
    The Liberals have made PC into a monster. The truth can not be put out there because of it. People have had it with?working to make ends meet and having? some of that money taken away for these irresponsible, low life?users of the system, who feel they deserve it and they should get it. It’s all part of the Obama?mentality reparations plan.? Cheryl??

  3. stinkfoot on August 9, 2012 at 7:52 pm

    So DeStefano is advocating that police harass someone for exercising their legal right to carry a weapon because he doesn’t agree with that right?
    I think people need to mull that thought over carefully in their head and think very seriously about whom they intend to vote for three months from now.? It seems beyond obvious that the establishment (those in political power as well as the mainstream media) have their sights set on our constitutional rights and if we do not effect a halt to this en masse then they will likely be successful.
    We also need to be wary of how the MSM is trying to make us think.

  4. Dottie on August 9, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    I would think that Mr DeStefano should be extremely embarrassed that a citizen of his city felt he HAD to carry a gun for protection. ?

  5. Eric on August 9, 2012 at 8:10 pm

    DeStefano is a horses butt… always has been. ?Reminds me a lot of Barry Soetoro! ?There’s no telling how his mother actually gave birth to this moron. ?Accidents like this usually end up in miscarriage!

  6. Dimsdale on August 9, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    Hmmm.? Ignoring the law, or even choosing not to enforce them.? That sounds familiar.
    Could it have something to do with another immigration scofflaw perhaps?

  7. wildcat on August 9, 2012 at 10:03 pm

    I find it very “curious” that this immigration lawyer from New Haven, the sanctuary city that encourages illegal immigration, created this scenario.? I would think he is ideologically in lock-step with DeStafano and the lefties in that city as a representative of the immigration lobby.? Call me suspicious (true) but could he be a plant to give DeStefano and his anti-gun buddies a reason to push more gun control laws in this great blue State of ours.? Some rumors that the Dems are looking to push anti-gun legislation in a special session this year.? This incident would fit the bill nicely.? I mean, clearly, if a law-abiding, permitted carrier can cause so much upset, we must need tighter gun laws right?? Manufactured crisis are a favorite of the left.? Maybe I’m reading too much into this situation but time will tell.? It just seems, as I said, curious.

    • Dimsdale on August 10, 2012 at 2:58 pm

      I had that in the back of my mind as well, but they you have to consider: who would know the nature of his clients better than their lawyer.? It might actually explain the gun.

    • ricbee on August 10, 2012 at 11:23 pm

      I’d put nothing past Big John or any politician in Corrupticut.

  8. sammy22 on August 9, 2012 at 11:06 pm

    It is amusing to read the lesson in civics. As soon as that is over, it’s back to denigrating elected officials.

    • Dimsdale on August 10, 2012 at 2:55 pm

      Actually, we simply point out the fact that they denigrate themselves and their office.

  9. Tim-in-Alabama on August 10, 2012 at 1:21 am

    I’m so glad to hear DeStefano speaking out against abortion.

  10. Lynn on August 10, 2012 at 8:31 am

    It’s ok with me if “right ” (meaning Conservative) takes over, but not if “right” means according to da Mayor.

  11. JBS on August 10, 2012 at 8:47 am

    The Mayor of Crime Central speaks out against permitted carrying of a firearm? A Right is not a right?
    DeStefano is a politician. Another bad example of the new breed of democrat.
    Not surprising.

  12. ricbee on August 10, 2012 at 11:27 pm

    I carry my gun wherever I go. Hwang & DeStefano might be trying to pressure private places to post”No Guns”. That should be of no concern to any legal carrier,theaters can’t pass laws.

  13. gillie28 on August 11, 2012 at 1:50 pm

    I think his other motto is, “Just because something is illegal, doesn’t make it wrong!”? I thought the guy was in jail, or is that most of the other CT mayors????

  14. yeah on August 13, 2012 at 7:43 am

    hey destefano, just because you’re an a*hole doesnt make you bloomberg!


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