Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Bang! I mean, Zap!

Josh writes:

Normally I'd e-mail this sort of thing to Jack for inclusion in next month's Broken Planet, but since the last one just went out, this may not be as topical in a month's time...

The moderate view on tasers seems to be that they'd be a good idea if they're used instead of guns; a bad idea if they're used as a replacement for batons/pepper spray. In any case, I think we'd all agree that getting it the wrong way around is something we really want to try to avoid...

More serious side-note: This is clearly a case of using a taser (well, trying to) not for self defence, but in order to "induce compliance", which our local boys swear blind they won't be doing. Well, probably not. Unless they guy was, you know, a real dick...

4 comments:

phats said...

Pretty sure standard proceedure is to strap the taser to the left hip and the pistol to the right to avoid confusion :)

Speaking of, any strong feelings here one way or another over the taser issue? Personally I can't see a problem.

Josh said...

Like I say, I'm OK with tasers as an alternative to guns; as an alternative to pepper spray I think they're too severe. The police say they'll only be used for defence and won't be used to "induce compliance" (i.e. tasering someone who won't do what the officer is ordering them to do -- that's torture in my books) but the recent incident of that guy being pepper sprayed while on the ground in handcuffs doesn't fill me with confidence...

Apathy Jack said...

Basically the problem with giving the police anything more dangerous than pieces of paper with "Stop!" written on them is, as Josh says, the issue of "inducing complience".

Specifically, the police right now pepper spray helpless people in handcuffs. If we gave them tasers, they would taser helpless people in handcuffs. If we gave them guns, they would shoot helpless people in handcuffs.

I remember back in my activist days, I saw way too many people shoved face first into the concrete in the name inducing complience.

RSJS said...

Jack as always is being a wuss just because the kids who are going to be tazered until they're medium rare are the little hellions he herds.

Steven Wallace could be wasting my tax dollars to this day if the coppers had tasers way back when. As it was, they had two choices: 1) look sternly at him, 2) blow chunks off him with Glockenspiels. They chose the chunky option. If they had option 3) zap him like a bug, he might have lived.

Our cops already have access to firearms. Giving them something other than shotguns to play with = doubleplus good.