Mission Statement - De-Spinning the Pro-Taser Propaganda

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


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.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Eugene, OR - closing the gap between the justification and the ugly reality

Eugene, OR - Eugene residents are collecting signatures for a ballot initiative to restrict the use of tasers by police officers. Randy Prince, a teacher, says the initiative would allow police to use tasers only in situations where deadly force is justified. Critics say the effort to classify tasers as a deadly weapon would hamstring police. ... A new report from the Eugene police department says officers are now using tasers more frequently than pepper spray when confronting resistant people. [LINK]

If tasers were pure-good, then there wouldn't be any controversy surrounding them. These sorts of initiatives to restrict the use of tasers are simply trying to force the Taser Use Policies into some reasonable alignment with the purportedly pure-as-the-driven-snow justification for tasers.

The pro-taser forces make wild claims that "tasers save lives" (as an alternative to police gun fire), and then squeal when someone tries to hold them to this purpose.

The facts are plain. Tasers are used about 100 times as often as the police have historically used their guns. This figure varies with location and with time. After a few taser-deaths, the rate of taser overuse tends to drop a bit as the more switched-on officers figure it out on their own.

But this 100-to-1 overuse ratio is a good round number. So the argument that "tasers save lives" ignores about 99% of the taser debate.

The tasers themselves are not really the issue. It's the damn lies about their safety, the defective training, and the propaganda-based Taser Use Policies cut-and-paste from Taser International - those are the problems.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: I don't care if the police have fricken' Flame Throwers. So long as the burnt citizens are not blamed on Spontaneous Human Combustion.

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