My very belated comment regarding the student in Florida who was tasered while police tried to remove him from a political gathering: the cops SO overreacted!! It wasn’t the first time it has happened and it won’t be the last. No doubt each police department has its own “rules of engagement” for using Tasers; I can’t help thinking such rules are either too liberal in the first place or are being ignored by the cops on the beat. Tasers, at a minimum, are painful and incapacitating. And they have a lot of potential for injuring the target, whose health and surroundings can vary widely. A shock might be too much for a weak heart, a dart might injure an eye or face, or injury could occur when the target falls to the ground. In several cases, death has resulted.
I’ve always thought Tasers were to be employed only when lethal gunfire was the only other option. Yet more and more it appears that officers use Tasers rather than fight with a suspect and risk getting a bloody nose or black eye. There were six officers on that Florida student; it is ludicrous to think a Taser was required to subdue him. One can only conclude police simply didn’t want to be bothered with the struggle. That’s not what Tasers are for.
Film of officers using Tasers crops up on TV all the time. A motorist talks back to the cop issuing a traffic ticket… and gets tasered. A burglary suspect shows less than the proper respect to the arresting officer… and gets tasered. Tasers seem to have become an easy way for impatient officers to lash out at annoying citizens. Tasers should be used only in the same context as guns, when an officer is being threatened with possible serious harm. Their use in any other situation is a clear indictment of a cop lacking patience, self-control, good judgment, or all of the above.
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