Thursday, April 2, 2009

Tasers and Excessive Force

The Report has discussed Taser use in the past. We firmly believe that Eureka City Police use of Tasers does NOT serve to protect the best interest of the community or its citizens. When will the EPD arm and certify use of the new Taser gun -- called the Shockwave -- a powerful crowd-control weapon?
"With the push of a button at a stand-off distance of up to 100 meters, the Shockwave unit deploys multiple standard TASER® cartridges that are oriented across an area arc. Full area coverage is provided to instantaneously incapacitate multiple personnel within that region."

Tasers Are the New Killers: Watch Their Popularity Surge!

As Taser use proliferates and deaths grow, lack of police accountability becomes a serious problem. Continuing to argue that Taser's are safe is:
... allowing Tasers to occupy a gray area -- not lethal except when they are -- will make it that much harder for police to be held accountable for excessive force and homicide. Cops already get away with shooting suspects dead with little to no consequences. Arming them with Tasers under the pretense that they are safe will only perpetuate this trend as inevitable deaths occur.

Like "pre-emptive" arrests, the 50,000-volt Tasers that London police are carrying as they stand off with G20 protesters this week may be seen as a necessary precaution. But the past several years have shown the slippery slope governments create in the name of security.
This issue seems most appropriate for Humboldt County with its sordid history of impunity and lack of accoutability as Taser use emphasizes police safety rather than that public safety. Because Taser's are proven lethal, this community needs to know every time a Taser is used by the Eureka Police Department or any other agency and why. That report needs to be published by the local news media.

Since Taser use is about intimidation and forced submission, actually torturing "suspects" into agreeing that the police have the right to arrest them, police safety and simple logic suggests people just might be a little more cooperative with police officers:
- "while also suggesting that suspects are less likely to resist police officers for fear of being tasered to death. "People now recognize that the Taser is painful and that Taser -- maybe they're thinking -- may kill me, and they're co-operating too"
If city, county and state governments are putting public safety first, then put out Taser usage so that we know what we're dealing with the next time a police officer decides to have a talk with one us.

You can read the complete discussion here.

Addendum :: Why torture is legal in America today:
America, due to Bush/Cheney policy, has added torture to our standard operating procedure, even if it is now held in abeyance by the Obama administration. That morally reprehensible act, while now out of favor, is essentially legal and Constitutional because no Congressional objection has been made and no one has been held accountable.
[Source of quote]

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