A lot to say about this, but after the last police shooting, and then another, and another. . .I feel compelled to say what’s been on my mind for many years.
First: Why can’t police shoot? I mean, why do they have such terrible aim?
A young woman has a knife and acts threatening. She’s killed. Not shot in a leg, not wounded, killed.
An elderly man having a mental health crisis won’t comply with orders. He’s not hit in the arm, not wounded, but killed.
This happens all the time (and much too often responding to black and brown people). Though I realize there are times when lethal force must be used, many times it just doesn’t seem necessary.
Second: perhaps more importantly, why use guns? There needs to be another way to incapacitate a person without shooting them.
Obviously, first and foremost is negotiating, de-escalating a tense situation.
When that first response isn’t feasible for some (very good) reason, here’s an idea that could become the Second Best Option:
Now, stay with me here, this gets a little wild and “out there.”
I’ve been a Star Trek fan since the 60’s. Star Trek gave us touch screens, cell phones, other forms of A.I. (I’m still waiting for some kind of transporter, and warp speed).
Anyway, phasers. Some way to stun people from a distance. Tasers are terrible. The military has experimented with lasers (and sound waves). A light-ray of some kind could revolutionize policing. No need to kill people, especially people having a mental breakdown or high on drugs who just need to be brought down, not killed.
I have no doubt someone has the technology somewhere. If not, create it! Make it available to every police department.
Even a person with a gun can be taken down without killing them.
Police need more, and better options to take a person into custody.
(I think I’ve even seen some officers throw a net (not a hood) over some people just to disarm them. Why not use that option, in special cases?
The killing could stop.
(not to mention changing the battlefield forever)
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