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Tear Gas and Pepper Spray Can Be Deadly, But the U.S. Won’t Regulate Police Use

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SOURCE: In These Times

“While tear gas and pepper spray are banned from use in war by an international treaty, domestic use is legal and nearly ubiquitous in the United States.”

(Photo by JASON REDMOND/AFP via Getty Images)

Despite widespread use, chemical agents sold for police purposes aren’t monitored by any federal agency.

BY Terry J. Allen

This article was originally published by In These Times on April 3, 2000. Although this investigation was written 20 years ago, police and other law enforcement continue to use and misuse pepper and tear gasses on peaceful protesters in violation of manufacturers’ regulations and international treaties. Support for this article was provided by the Fund for Constitutional Governmen​t.

The tons of tear gas and pepper spray munitions Seattle police used on demonstrators and bystanders alike at the anti-WTO demonstrations last December contained chemicals implicated in lung problems, eye damage and even death. Contrary to conventional wisdom, the effects of these chemical weapons are not always confined to 15 or so minutes of intense pain and incapacitation. According to manufacturers’ documents, military research and medical literature, each of these agents carries short- and long-term health risks; various formulations contain potential carcinogens.

Tear gas and pepper spray cause health problems even when used within guidelines on healthy people. But in Seattle, as elsewhere, law enforcement violated manufacturers’ warnings and inevitably sprayed vulnerable populations such as people with diabetes, asthma, allergies or heart problems, as well as pregnant women, children and the elderly. “It was like a war zone,” says Russell Sparks, a student from Bellingham, Washington, who helped block a Seattle intersection on December 1. “The police rolled up in humvees, and I heard the clink, clink of cops jogging toward us. Within seconds the area was filled with gas and the air was pure white all around. I coughed and coughed. I felt like I was on fire, my friend and I both became hysterical. He fell down. A middle-aged man near me passed out, eyes open, shaking, dry heaving, twitching in the shoulders. A woman passed out face down. I tried to help but my eyes were burning and I was screaming for medical help.”

Three days later, Sparks still felt “serious flu symptoms, phlegmy, tired, fatigued, problems with eyes focusing, burning, slightly nauseous. I felt like it went into every pore.” He wasn’t alone. The persistence and severity of symptoms widely reported by demonstrators and hapless bystanders gave rise to speculation that some “mystery gas” had been used. Rumors of nerve gas spread like a toxic cloud across the Internet.

The truth is that tear gas and pepper spray alone can cause temporary blindness, respiratory problems, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue and disorientation. Symptoms may linger for days in otherwise healthy individuals. Out of 187 North Carolina corrections officers exposed to pepper spray under controlled conditions for training purposes, according to Duke University Medical Center study, eight had symptoms persisting for more than a week, including eye problems, chest problems, headaches and disorientation.

More seriously, reports by the Army and in prestigious medical journals have warned of respiratory arrest, pulmonary edema, and acute elevations in blood pressure associated with risk of stroke and heart attack. Military and industrial sources also point to the possibility of cancer, birth defects and DNA damage from these chemical weapons.

While tear gas and pepper spray are banned from use in war by an international treaty, domestic use is legal and nearly ubiquitous in the United States.   READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE HERE.

‘OK, Boomer’ mentality: Academics want to label old age a disease, in case you had any respect left for the elderly

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Frank Furedi:  is an author and social commentator is an emeritus professor of sociology at the University of Kent in Canterbury. Author of How Fear Works: The Culture of Fear in the 21st Century. Follow him on Twitter @Furedibyte
“The scapegoating of the elderly amounts to a form of gerontophobia, which dehumanises the old. Unfortunately, this unflattering representation of the elderly has become normalised to the point that many old people feel culturally isolated and constantly devalued. In my own research of the process of ageing I was struck by the profound sense of alienation and estrangement that many of my elderly respondents communicated to me. In particular they expressed a deep sense of cultural distance from the young.”

 

‘OK, Boomer’ mentality: Academics want to label old age a disease, in case you had any respect left for the elderly

 

Prominent academics are pushing for the World Health Organization (WHO) to include old age on its list of diseases. They say it will improve old people’s lives – but in reality, it will give everyone the excuse to write them off.

In their wisdom, 30 experts – from prestigious universities like Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Cambridge Imperial and UCL – have decided that ageing is no longer a normal feature of life. They want the World Health Organization to classify ageing as a disease. This diseasing of old age represents another blow to the moral status of the elderly.

The experts claim that the transformation of ageing from being a natural part of the cycle of life into a protracted phase of illness will ensure that the medical treatment that the elderly receive will improve. No doubt these medics actually believe that they have the best interest of the elderly at heart. But by rebranding the process of ageing as a form of illness these experts unwittingly contribute to the weakening of the moral status of the old and contribute to the ongoing erosion of the authority of adulthood.

Being old is already considered to be an unattractive and undesirable stage of life. The call to diagnose ageing as a form of illness will merely enhance its negative image.

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Rense & Marti Oakley – Guardianship – Theft, Looting And Murder

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It happens everyday in every state.  Elderly or disabled individuals are kidnapped under the guise of “guardianship” by predatory guardians who then begin bleeding off the estate.

Corrupt probate judges, attorney’s, social agency workers, nursing home operators, doctors and the ever present predatory guardian, all begin hammering away at the vicitms assets until nothing is left.  The family is restrained from visitation while hearsay charges  are levied against them by the predators.  No evidence required.

[Interview on Jeff Rense]

https://ppjg.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/rense_oakley_062911.mp3

“06-29-11 – HR3 – Marti Oakley – The Guardianship Nightmare” from http://www.rense.com by Jeff Rense. Released: 2011.

IF you think this can’t happen to you, think again.  Congress is well aware of this crime.  Your state agencies, police departments, state attorney’s general, the FBI, the DoJ …all are fully informed and yet refuse to do anything to stop this theft and looting while holding an elderly or disabled victim hostage.

There is money to be made by converting a human being to chattel property!

And if a victim escapes the prison of the nursing home?  A warrant is issued for “escaped human property”…….It could happen to you.

Texas: SB 286 payrolling attorney’s

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For Texas Residents-
Senate Jurisprudence Hearings Set For 03/01/2011 – Estate / Guardianship

The Senate Jurisprudence Committee will be taking public testimony on 2 bills that should be of interest to all Elderly and Disabled Texans in Guardianship. Unfortunately these two bills only continue the abuse estates. SB 286- relating to attorney’s fees, the amendments are to include that the court may allocate attorney’s fees taxed at costs among the parties as the court finds is FAIR and JUST. If after examining the proposed ward’s ASSETS the court determines the proposed ward is unable to pay for costs allocated to the proposed ward for services provided by an attorney, the county is responsible is responsible for those costs. The attorneys appointed by the courts are forcing the sale of all assets to payroll attorneys fees.

SB 481- relating to the removal of a guardian of an incapacitated person ordered by the court. This bill has been amended for the court to provide notice and citation of a removal (after the fact) giving 30 days to file an application with the court for a hearing for reinstatement. If you are removed, you will be affected by SB 286 to pay for attorney fees that are FAIR and JUST. Which allows Attorneys to collect more fees.

A removal should only take place with clear and convincing evidence to substantiate a removal as written in the Probate Code under Section 761, no mention of removal with clear and convincing evidence in this bill. However, included in this bill: if the court is SATISFIED by the PREPONDERANCE OF THE EVIDENCE THAT THE APPLICANT DID NOT ENGAGE IN THE CONDUCT THAT DIRECTLY LED TO THE APPLICANT’S REMOVAL, the court shall set aside an order appointing a successor guardian, and shall enter an order reinstating the APPLICANT AS GUARDIAN. This bill does not mention that attorney’s fees be waived with the preponderance of the evidence.

Texas residents please join us at the Capitol On Tuesday March 01, 2001 to OPPOSE  these bills, and speak up for the disabled and elderly and for yourselves, this is our future under the Texas Probate Code pertaining to Estates and Guardianships.

We compel you to LISTEN, LEARN AND ACT for the well being and sanctity of families with incapacitated and elderly members, many of whom are also your constituents. You must bring justice to the citizens of Texas through logical and appropriate changes in the laws and institutions.  Unfortunately there are no agencies or laws to protect the rights of the family members of Texas’s most vulnerable population once their Guardianships are removed and revoked

For More information contact GRADE – Guardianship Reform Advocates for the Disabled and Elderly @ info@guardianshipreform.org or visit us as www.guardianshipreform.org

   “So much of what is best in us is bound up in our love of family, that it remains the measure of our stability because it measures our sense of loyalty. All other pacts of love or fear derive from it and are modeled upon it.”
  Haniel Long

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