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A necessary complement to legal gun ownership is legal recognition of the right to use them, both de jure and de facto. The wide discretion and unpredictability of district attorneys in their decisions to pursue charges against individuals using arms in clear self-defense can cost tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees even when one is acquitted. Additionally, civil courts’ willingness to entertain bogus lawsuits from criminals against their victims presents an additional risk. Under such conditions, it should be no surprise that some businesses are hesitant to hire additional security officers who might need to use force to defend property. Losses from theft can often be lower than losses from legal liabilities.

For similar reasons, it makes sense why business owners might choose not to repair or replace defunct security cameras (if Lightfoot is talking about an actual phenomenon). In several major cities, including Chicago, prosecutorial discretion has been stretched to its limits in terms of the refusal to prosecute criminals against whom sufficient evidence exists. All the video evidence in the world doesn’t matter if prosecutors offices simply drop cases. It doesn’t make business sense to spend money to make home movies of thieves ripping you off.

In short, what must be fought against are the conditions of (the unfortunately named) “anarcho-tyranny,” in which there is “the simultaneous existence of armed dictatorship and the absence of the rule of law.” If state actors are going to fail in sustaining basic order, the least they can do is stay out of the way of private individuals who protect property rights. It makes no sense to extend Chicago law enforcement officers tremendous protections from liability while also expecting private citizens to protect themselves without the tools to do so and with the legal burden of proof essentially against them.

— Tate Fegley in What Chicago’s Mayor Gets Wrong about Private Security

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