Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Tasered College Student

I watched the video; an obnoxious adult (not a kid) disrupts a lecture by John Kerry during QandA, taking over the mic and proving his idiocy, then resists removal by campus security. Screaming, kicking and yelling, under a pile of officers, some of them women, and gets tasered. He turns into a screaming puddle and the whole thing escalates.

Was he abused?

I don't think so, though I admit it's borderline.

1) It was on video, but we don't know if he was grabbing officers inappropriately, so we really don't know what they were responding to.

2) Idiocy has concequences and now the student knows that.

3) Tasing hurts like crazy, but it isn't permanent and it beats clubbing the guy in the head.

4) He also deserves it because he's probably not going to learn his lesson and he'll file a lawsuit. I hope the judge tasers him.

Was it necessary to tase him? It's hard to second guess officers in that kind of situation. They couldn't wrestle him out the door, they didn't want to club him... maybe the officer thought it would take the fight out of him. If so, it didn't, so maybe it was a poor choice. What should they have done? They're choices were: Tase him, Club him, let him go and if he didn't leave, you're left with the first two choices again. Tasing is the best of those options.


Sunrise said...

I actually felt a little sorry for Kerry, up there trying to conduct a forum with all this insanity going on. It was clear from how he was stammering that he was uncomfortable and didn't know what to do.

Then again, maybe that's a good example of what he'd be like as a leader during, say, a terrorist attack.

So the guy was a complete idiot. When the police tell you to shut up and calm down, you need to do exactly that. I do not understand why they couldn't have wrestled him out the door, though. That many cops couldn't drag him out of the building? That doesn't say much for our police force. And having this caught on camera certainly isn't good for their image, because a lot of people are not going to give them the benefit of the doubt. I mean, you heard the people shouting "Rodney King" and "Police Brutality", when before that they had actually applauded when the cops pulled him away from the microphone.

The guy didn't have a knife or a gun. He was just being a jerk. I don't know that he deserved to be tased. Arresting him, okay, but they could have done that outside, I think, and spared everyone the spectacle.

Anonymous said...

Well, my wife seemed to have a lot to say about that. I say if all the cops had cattle prods and a smile they could have taken him out easily.

overthinker said...

after matt's comment...

well i heard sean hannity's opinion and i liked it but i'm not smart enough to requote it here.

i liked what mr swanson had to say.

whether he should or shouldn't have been tazed; he was; it's done. it seems like nobody has any fear of authority so maybe that's why we need tazers now--something less than a gun to enforce people with...
uh oh. i'm ramblign and i haven't had any coffee yet. this could be bad.

sherlock said...

Have fun tasing idiots for all i care.

Did you see the poor woman who got tased on youtube?(the welsh host family i was with have a very low opinion of american cops now) She was trying to get out of the car and the police tased her after giving her a hard time. That one makes me madder than heck.

Rob said...

Can't say I did, dear Sherlock. Youtube is another one of those generation gap things. I can't comment on that particular incident, but I've known a few cops who should never have been given a badge, let alone a taser. Incidents will crop up, but you can't judge an entire group by the actions of a few.

In this case, the wise thing would have been for the police to tell the camera operators to stop for a few moments and the human bedsore would probably have shut up. Hindsight is everything, though. They did the best they can.

Rob said...

Okay, this just in, an obese woman confined to a wheelchair exhibiting schitzophrenia brandishes a hammer and a knife at responding police officers. They tase her 50 times and she dies from heart failure (is that the one you were talking about, Sherlock?)

There are a dozen different, non lethal responses to this woman. BUT police are told that tasing is actually quite safe (which it usually is). They are defending their choice because by their understanding it was the safest choice.

I'm thinking if the first dozen tasings don't work, it's time to stop pushing that button.

That said, there's a little devil in me that says delivering the shock is probably quite fulfilling...