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Old 09-24-2007, 06:54 AM   #1
Kairho
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Default Worse than Police Use of TASERs

The use of TASERs by various cops lately is all over the news.

But I was shocked even more when I saw a full page advertisement in the 2 October issue of PC Magazine selling them to the public. Even Amazon now sells cute little pink TASERs.

At first glance this seems like the ultimate in irresponsibility based on the ease of use, role model usage in law enforcement, and the propensity of our society to now view even innocent actions and words as "offensive." Yet guns and pepper spray are also legal.....

Your thoughts?
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Old 09-24-2007, 07:30 AM   #2
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A neighbor recently used one to stop an assailant in an attempted rape, of the neighbor. He was disabled long enough that the police got to his location in time to arrest him.

So that was good...

I have a real problem with tasers, about the same as hand guns. These things can kill, and the general public shouldn't be carrying them around.

I'm going to not discuss the so-called Constitutional right for private citizen's to bear arms, except to say I think this comes from a gross misinterpretation at best, and a gross manipulation at worse, of the Second Amendment of the US Constitution.

Hand guns, like assault weapons have only one purpose; to kill. Tasers under the right circumstances can also kill. For example, if the person being tasered has a pace maker, most likely the electrical charge from the pace maker will be disrupted, the pace maker damaged, and the person will have a heart attack.

According to Amnesty International, there is ample evidence that anyone with a heart condition will likely have a heart attack induced if shot by a taser, and state that according to statistics, more than 150 Taser-related deaths have occurred in the USA and Canada since 2001

Another problem with being shot with a taser is that some drugs make people vulnerable to heart attack if hit by a high voltage electrical charge.

According to CBS News, on Long Island, David Glowczenski was suffering a mental breakdown, so his family called police for help. His sister, Jean Griffin, says, "We called them for safety because he was disoriented. …And an hour later he was dead."

Glowzenski died after a confrontation in which an officer stunned him nine times with a TASER, and he wasn't on drugs or alcohol, Andrews notes. "He committed no crime; he didn't do anything wrong," Griffin says.

While the evidence is anecdotal, there is ample evidence that tasers may be lethal under a wide variety of circumstances, even though the manufacturers insist they are not lethal. Therefore, in my opinion, before more are sold to the general public, or perhaps anyone, an investigation, independent of government law enforcement agencies, and taser manufacturers should be carried out.
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Old 09-24-2007, 09:28 AM   #3
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Not saying I think this is a good idea, BUT, a few caveats:

1> 'Personal' tazers operate at a significantly lower charge level and amplitude than law enforcement units. Not saying this makes them safe, just a little less hazardous. They are also single-or-duo pulse only, unlike police units which can deliver up to 10 pulses or continuous charge

2> A background check is required for purchase of a Taser, oddly a more timely one than for a gun.

3> A number of states have either banned the sale of tasers for personal use or at minimum consider them concealed weapons.

As part of a Sheriff's cadet course, I got tazered. Hurts like heck, but surprisingly little aftereffects (a minor muscle pull). When used responsibly, they are great defense tools. (Note in Ned's post the guy was pulsed NINE times - Meth fiends usually take 4 or 5 hits, so there was NO call for that). Before I got myself zapped, I did the research, and most pacemakers can easily handle a single pulse, maybe 2, UNLESS the leads are right near the heart (which is why officers are trained to shoot for the gut.)

Like I said, not saying this is a GOOD idea, but in reality its really no worse than pepper spray as a defensive item (same general range and possible lethality)
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Old 09-24-2007, 10:03 AM   #4
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According to my cardiologist, as pacemakers get older and their electronics begin to degrade, like all electronics, they become more susceptible to tasers.

I sincerely doubt that private citizens purchasing tasers over the Internet get any training or instruction.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loonbeam View Post
...I did the research, and most pacemakers can easily handle a single pulse, maybe 2, UNLESS the leads are right near the heart (which is why officers are trained to shoot for the gut.)...
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Old 09-24-2007, 10:18 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ned View Post
I sincerely doubt that private citizens purchasing tasers over the Internet get any training or instruction.
Agreed. And even the police are not completely accurate at 15-25 feet. Aiming for the gut and actually hitting where aimed are two different things.
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Old 09-24-2007, 12:00 PM   #6
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I think they make a good alternative for cops, since guns are the other alternative. You're probably a lot more likely to survive a Tasering than a gunshot. I think we have a few bad apples out there who just don't know when to stop. I DO NOT think we should remove a weapon from the cop's arsenal just because it might kill somebody. Think about that for a minute.

I'm not saying civil disobedience deserves tasering until death, but perhaps people could think about it before they keep fighting an arrest. Once the cops start to arrest you, you're going to jail. Putting up a fight sure isn't going to change that, although not putting up a fight just might help. The place to fight charges at that point is in court.

As for citizens having them, I'm ambivalent. It really is a lot like having a handgun. You can really hurt someone with it, but you can use it to protect yourself and others. Of course, criminals can also use it to disable victims in the course of committing a crime. But making tasers only available to police is not going to prevent criminals from getting them. It only prevents the innocent from getting a device that may save a life. (Okay, I know it sounds like I borrowed that from the NRA, but I know it to be the truth.)

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Old 09-24-2007, 12:18 PM   #7
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For cops is one thing, but the original question was about the general public using them.

As far as civil disobedience goes, rubber bullets are a good alternative, and of course, not foolproof either.

I'm pondering and wondering without any statistical evidence, but only based on anecdotal evidence, and news reports if home ownership of handguns gives many people much real protection.

For example, many people, to keep the home safe in the case of children, don't keep the gun loaded in the house. What good is it then?

I read about couples having a heated argument and one of them going for the gun they have for protection and killing their spouse. The gun didn't do much good then either.

I'm wondering how many people have every even used a gun to stop an intruder, versus how many have accidentally shot someone.

I'm also wondering how many handgun owners actually know how to use them and practice to make sure they'll hit at what they're aiming, and only at what they're aiming.

I'm also wondering if someone breaks into a home with a gun how many homeowners are going to be able to grab their gun and get the intruder before the intruder gets them.

I'm wondering why we just don't get rid of the d@mn things, since they have little or no sport value, and become a whole lot safer than if we have them.

Just my wonderings and musings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gesualdo View Post
I think they make a good alternative for cops, since guns are the other alternative. You're probably a lot more likely to survive a Tasering than a gunshot. I think we have a few bad apples out there who just don't know when to stop. I DO NOT think we should remove a weapon from the cop's arsenal just because it might kill somebody. Think about that for a minute.

I'm not saying civil disobedience deserves tasering until death, but perhaps people could think about it before they keep fighting an arrest. Once the cops start to arrest you, you're going to jail. Putting up a fight sure isn't going to change that, although not putting up a fight just might help. The place to fight charges at that point is in court.

As for citizens having them, I'm ambivalent. It really is a lot like having a handgun. You can really hurt someone with it, but you can use it to protect yourself and others. Of course, criminals can also use it to disable victims in the course of committing a crime. But making tasers only available to police is not going to prevent criminals from getting them. It only prevents the innocent from getting a device that may save a life. (Okay, I know it sounds like I borrowed that from the NRA, but I know it to be the truth.)
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Old 09-24-2007, 03:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ned View Post
For cops is one thing, but the original question was about the general public using them.

As far as civil disobedience goes, rubber bullets are a good alternative, and of course, not foolproof either.

I'm pondering and wondering without any statistical evidence, but only based on anecdotal evidence, and news reports if home ownership of handguns gives many people much real protection.

For example, many people, to keep the home safe in the case of children, don't keep the gun loaded in the house. What good is it then?

I read about couples having a heated argument and one of them going for the gun they have for protection and killing their spouse. The gun didn't do much good then either.

I'm wondering how many people have every even used a gun to stop an intruder, versus how many have accidentally shot someone.

I'm also wondering how many handgun owners actually know how to use them and practice to make sure they'll hit at what they're aiming, and only at what they're aiming.

I'm also wondering if someone breaks into a home with a gun how many homeowners are going to be able to grab their gun and get the intruder before the intruder gets them.

I'm wondering why we just don't get rid of the d@mn things, since they have little or no sport value, and become a whole lot safer than if we have them.

Just my wonderings and musings.
Good points. Hence, my ambivalence. Along the same lines, I always wondered what good a gun lock is, if you can't get it off in time to defend yourself. My dad's rifles are in a locked glass case in the living room - certainly not a good place if that's where the intruder enters. But he always keeps his handgun in a handy place at night. No worries about where it is during the day - he carries it everywhere. Not everyone can do that, though. Lucky for us, he taught us how to use guns safely when we were young. That took care of our natural curiosity about them and we generally didn't touch them outside his close supervision. But I'm as sure that approach would work as well today. Kids are different.

For that matter, police also have guns that shoot bean bags. They work pretty well. Unless someone falls and hits their head. So still not foolproof. I don't think anything can be.

I'm just not sure there's much point to outlaw individuals from having tasers when they have legal access to so many other more dangerous weapons. Gee, what's one more?
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Old 09-24-2007, 04:09 PM   #9
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I'm not thrilled with the fact that anyone can buy a taser nor do I like the idea of people being able to purchase guns and other weapons.

Too many people are innocently hurt by weapons. But at least tasers are not going to kill as many as a gun or knife may do. If I had to use a weapon, I would prefer to use the taser over that of shooting a gun.

I have some pepper spray that was given to me by one of my ex bosses. Sometimes I have to work late and feel a little better when going to my car if I have that in my hand.

I'm not sure what would be the best way for someone to defend themselves. The only thing that cannot be used against the owner of a weapon is a dog. I have two dogs and I'm sure they would protect me.
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