According to Amnesty International USA :
Since June 2001, more than 351 individuals in the United States have died after being shocked by police Tasers. Most of those individuals were not carrying a weapon. Amnesty International is concerned that Tasers are being used as tools of routine force — rather than as an alternative to firearms.
Before I hear another word about how “criminals” should know better – let us look at a two cases which thankfully did not end in death.
Eunice Crowder, you see, didn’t follow orders. Eunice was uncooperative. Worried a city employee was hauling away a family heirloom, a 90-year-old red toy wagon, she had the nerve to feel her way toward the trailer in which her yard debris was being tossed.
Enter the police. Eunice, who is hard of hearing, ignored the calls of Officers Robert Miller and Eric Zajac to leave the trailer. When she tried, unsuccessfully, to bite the hands that were laid on her, she was knocked to the ground.
When she kicked out at the cops, she was pepper-sprayed in the face with such force that her prosthetic marble eye was dislodged. As she lay on her stomach, she was Tased four times with Zajac’s electric stun gun.
And when Nellie Scott, Eunice’s 94-year-old mother, tried to rinse out her daughter’s eye with water from a two-quart Tupperware bowl, what does Miller do? According to Ernie Warren Jr., Eunice’s lawyer, the cop pushed Nellie up against a fence and accused her of planning to use the water as a weapon.
Lesson learned? Let the Government take away your possessions – or be punished.
McFarland told ABC’s San Francisco affiliate KGO that he called 911 after slipping and falling on the steps at his house. In the video, his pants are torn.
But after being treated by paramedics, he said, he was ready for it all to be over. That’s when, he said, police stormed in.
“They came in here like there was a fire going on, like a gunfight was going on,” he told KGO.
Lesson Learned? Never call 911 if you hurt yourself and if you do – certainly don’t admit your hurt – or be punished.
Interestingly enough the arguments for usage by the Police Departments sound very similar – and both cases were challenged. Mrs. Crowder was awarded $140,000 and Mr. McFarland’s case is still being heard.
Why as a Society are we allowing this to happen around the Nation? To show how mainstream and accepted this has become, watch this video of a Cop (with his partner assisting) who doesn’t like the actions of his Fantasy Football Teammate. Did you laugh? I didn’t either and I plan to contact DirecTV and demand they pull this offensive commercial.
What about the Bud Light commercial where a fully equipped SWAT team secures the beer and pizza, but leaves the individual needing help stranded across the hall?
In addition I just learned of a very useful organization that tracks these types of issues called The National Police Misconduct Statistics and Reporting Project. One can see from this map that police misconduct is not as “isolated” as one would believe – and this is just 9 months of 2009:
If ever there was somewhere to divert “support our local cops” fund-raising requests or DirecTV monthly programming fees – this is it folks. This issue is not about age, gender or ethnicity – this issue is about fear.
We are descending into a group of individuals who are fearful of our Government, both the Legislative and Policing side. We chose to cower in our homes hoping that we will be “missed” or not chosen for action because we are “innocent”. If we allow and accept such statistics as represented in this report or as played daily on television as a “funny commentary” on society what dignity do we have.
Where does this issue stop? Rape for Romaine Lettuce? Child Abduction for Cheetos? Where is your line and what do you intend to do about it? Or will this image be next? Our Children surrendering for safety.