Society

Washington Man Cites "Joe Biden Defense" After Firing Shotgun In The Air

| by Will Hagle

Joe Biden is one of the rare politicians that usually says what he thinks whenever he’s asked. He’s the reason the formerly-strict Obama administration ultimately caved on their position against gay marriage. Someone asked him what he thought, and he told the truth. Earlier this year, an interviewer asked Biden what he thought about defending one’s home using weapons. Biden responded that “Americans don’t need semi-automatic weapons because a couple of blasts from a shotgun will scare off intruders” (quote from NewsOK, not verbatim Joe Biden). 

Now, a Washington native that has been arrested for doing exactly what Biden suggests in order to defend his property, is claiming that he fired his shotgun into the air because he was following the advice of the Vice-President. 

Vancouver, Washington resident Jeffrey C. Barton shot his shotgun into the air this summer to ward off a group of car thieves. He was charged with the misdemeanor of illegally discharging a firearm, but is pleading what has now become known as the “Joe Biden defense,” claiming that he was protecting his family and he had the legal right to do so under the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Washington law prohibits “willfully discharg[ing] any firearm, air gun, or other weapon, or throw[ing] any deadly missile in a public place, or in any place where any person might be endangered thereby,” according to the Washington State Legislature website. 

Barton remained firm, however, that his actions were completely legal. 

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“I did what Joe Biden told me to do. I went outside and fired my shotgun in the air,” Barton said, although prosecutors maintain that that sort of action is only allowed in self-defense, while Barton was not immediately threatened during the incident.