I’ve read many news stories decrying Taser use by police to subdue people with one health condition or another. It makes me ask the titular question, what did you expect?
Police get called to situations to which they have no business responding. Unfortunately they have no choice but to respond because there is no one else to be called. These situations usually arise from grown folks failing to act like grown folks.
You’ve seen stories like this one in the news. I am sure you wondered, “Why would someone tase a child?” Again I ask the titular (I love that word, don’t you?) question, what did you expect?
This mother called an armed stranger to her house to handle her child because she failed as a mother. A ten-year old refusing to take a shower is not a matter for the police to handle. A cop can’t fix in ten minutes what it took the mother ten years to screw up. I don’t want to see a ten-year old girl get tased, but the mother should not have involved the police.
Another good example is the recent taser use by the Tybee Island, GA police on an autistic man. The family left an autistic man out on the street while they were inside doing, well, I guess something more important than tending to their autistic family member. Again, the titular question, what did you expect?
If you read the police reports linked to by the story, you’ll find the account of the family being pissed at the police. Including the father’s statement that he would, “go down front and find the bastards.” All pops would have found was an ass kicking.
Why is pops pissed? Because he feels guilty. It’s ultimately his fault that his autistic son was left alone in front of a bar. Autism is characterized by the sufferer’s inability to communicate, and interact with others. Why anyone would think it is a good idea to leave an autistic person just standing around by themselves in front of a bar is beyond me. This man should not have had to talk to the police. Since the people charged with caring for this man failed as caretakers, the police were forced to interact with him.
Police have a job to do: Discovering, and investigating criminal activity. Raising other people’s children, and caring for the mentally challenged are activities that the police are ill-equipped to do. The police have a toolbox that contains the tools with which they do their jobs. This toolbox contains exactly: Officer presence, verbal commands, empty-handed whoopass, pepper spray, baton, taser, and firearm. That’s it. Dealing with unruly children, or mentally challenged individuals, with these tools is like trying to drive a screw with a hammer. It gets the job done, but it’s not very subtle. Until the public stops demanding that the police deal with every failure of society they are going to continue to be appalled by these events which are ultimately their own fault.