Mission Statement - De-Spinning the Pro-Taser Propaganda

Yeah right, 'Excited Delirium' my ass...

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The primary purpose of this blog is to provide an outlet for my observations and analysis about tasers, taser "associated" deaths, and the behaviour exhibited by the management, employees and minions of Taser International. In general, everything is linked back to external sources, often via previous posts on the same topic, so that readers can fact-check to their heart's content. This blog was started in late-2007 when Canadians were enraged by the taser death of Robert Dziekanski and four others in a short three month period. The cocky attitude exhibited by the Taser International spokespuppet, and his preposterous proposal that Mr. Dziekanski coincidentally died of "excited delirium" at the time of his taser-death, led me to choose the blog name I did and provides my motivation. I have zero financial ties to this issue.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

A convenient 'Pain Compliance' technique, or just 'Torture'?

(CP) FREDERICTON — New Brunswick's public safety minister has done an about-face on his government's policy concerning the use of stun guns on minors serving adult sentences in adult jails. On Monday, John Foran said any person serving a sentence in an adult facility is to be considered an adult, but today he says guards cannot use stun guns on minors. ... [LINK]

Although it is nice to see that a good night's rest and a cup of coffee in the morning can help to clear the mind, one needs to ask about the overall use of stun guns in Canadian jails:
  • Are stun guns "better than a gun" in the context of a jail? Do we normally shoot prisoners with a gun if they misbehave? What's going on?
  • How about water-boarding as punishment in Canadian prisons? Is there any real difference between tasering as punishment and water-boarding as punishment?
  • Is 2000 times higher than 'intolerable' pain (M26 and X26 tasers) the correct level for such pain compliance? Why don't we try 50,000 times higher than 'intolerable' to see how that works? [sarcasm]
  • Would Canadians be outraged if we knew what was going on inside Canadian jails? Will we find out eventually?
  • Has a judge ever said, "5 Years. If he misbehaves, zap him! And make it hurt." Who said it was okay to use electric shock in prisons?

These questions are not directed to the majority of prison staff that are fine, upstanding and dedicated professionals. But where there are tasers, there almost always seems to be misuse, abuse and overuse (sometimes driven by badly flawed policy).

Once we get the streets and airports made taser-safe, then we should turn our attention to the use of tasers in prisons. Given how screwed-up the Taser Use policies of the public police forces are, there's no doubt in my mind that the Taser Use policies in place for Canadian prisons are probably just as bad, or worse.

Senior government officials should add "Tasers/Prisons/Policies?" to their To-Do List.

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