Defense, Not Compliance

It’s time we really got the ball rolling on a national anti-taser abuse program:

The use of Tasers as compliance tools — means for compelling behavior — has generated a huge amount of protest. For many, the famous “Don’t Tase me, bro” incident, in which student Andrew Meyer was Tasered at a political debate, signaled an alarming new form of oppression. (Others have accused Meyer of setting the whole thing up as a stunt.) Perhaps the distinguishing feature of the Taser, compared with other forms of enforcing compliance, is that it can be used with one finger. Police have always been able enforce their wishes using batons or manual force, but a Taser is a much easier option, and perhaps this makes it more prone to abuse. Whether it’s zapping an unruly student protester, an uncooperative 11-year-old or an abusive driver, the trite observation that power corrupts may have some truth here.

“It sounds like this court is attempting to raise the bar for non-lethal use of force,” retired Los Angeles Police Department Captain Greg Meyer told the Los Angeles Times. The ruling specifies that the Taser X26 and similar devices should only be used where there is “strong government interest [that] compels the employment of such force.” This rules out any situation in which there are alternative means of dealing with the situation.

Here is the video of Mr. Derrick, a motorist tasered by police from the Columbia Missouri police department after 23 seconds!! He was stopped for allegedly having no front license plate. He was tasered 23 seconds later. He asked why he was stopped – the policeman responded that he had no license (false – it was in the police officer’s hand). The policeman signalled that he smelled marijuana (touched his nose – the other officer shook his head, indicating that he did not smell marijuana. Mr. Derrick was tasered, beaten, maced and arrested. Why? Resisting Arrest!!!!! His lawyer is filing suit and would appreciate your comments at sam.trapp@trapplaw.biz.

I am cadilac’s attorney. This will be the only post I make. Just to get the ball rolling – I enjoy your commentary and am quite interested in the current “get rid of the taser issue.”.

What if………

The license plate was in the front window because the placeholder recently fell off?

Cadilac was pulled over by the same two officers several weeks before and arrested for having a warrant for his arrest when he had no warrant, was taken to the police station for booking, and then was released?

Cadilac was wondering why the officer would tell him he has no license, when his license was in the officer’s hand?

Cadilac has no prior record except a high school altercation with another student?

There was no weapon or contraband of any kind discovered in the resulting search of the vehicle?

The policy of the CPD requires you to yell “Taser! Taser! Taser!” before deploying the taser?

— My only comments on this blog will be as follows: I want to support good, tough police work. Unfortunately, 100% of the officers do not behave properly 100% of the time. We cannot be so foolish as to believe that everyone with a badge deserves to wear it. I have no doubt that these two officers are good people. I just question whether they have the objectivity and wisdom to wield the awesome power of the state without getting their feelings hurt. Officers should go out of their way to be the good guys, with good motives. If they wish to presume that every peson they deal with in their job is a “bad guy,” fine. But they should go out of their way to de-escalate the already tense atmosphere of being stopped by the police, not escalate hostilities.

I believe the taser should NEVER be used to gain compliance. It should be used as a defensive weapon only. These are my beliefs and reasonable minds may disagree. John Stuart Mill opined that a persons liberty extends as far as that person wants it to, limited only when it bumps up against the liberty of another citizen. The duty of the State (in this case the police) is to step in when one persons liberty interferes with the liberty of another. Not to create another conflict.

We as citizens SHOULD question state actions that seem unreasonable. Thomas Jefferson stated that a little revolution is a good thing. It is. If the officers had treated Cadilac with a very small amount of respect, I believe they would have received it in return.

Read More http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2010/01/court-dials-back-taser-use-cops-cant-zap-to-force-behavior/#ixzz0ucMwJ5xa

2 thoughts on “Defense, Not Compliance

  1. Tasing is torture. Tased for not jumping when a white man tells you to. Like the guy just last week who was executed by taser for wanting to pick up his shoes. I come from a family of police officers, so I know how dangerous the job can be. But being scared is no defense for torture or murder.

  2. That was a disturbing video. There’s little doubt in my mind that the police committed these actions in part because the driver was black. It’s more racist bull from the police. You have to ask yourself would they have out of the blue tasered a white guy.

    And what’s worse is that we live in a near police state and many Americans refuse to acknowledge it. I think they don’t acknowledge it because the media is in massive denial about how the police in this country behave. No one is putting it all together. No one is pointing out how all these seemingly isolated incidents are all connected. There’s an incident here and we think “Oh that’s just a rogue cop.” Then we see an incident over there and it’s just another “rogue cop.” But all these incidents are connected by the unimpeachable, unassailable power and authority of the police in this country. They can do whatever they like with impunity and there’s no one to reign them in. There are no citizen’s review boards. Police rarely suffer serious consequences for their actions.

    It’s an insane country we live in.

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