Image via WikipediaTazer is one of the best police tools available to control non-compliant people. A lot of "critics" are now screaming at the number of deaths allegedly caused by the Tazer, usually on people high on drugs, or otherwise behaving very strangely. They said those who died have their civil rights violated, electrocuted by 50000 volts, and **** like that. That is from total misunderstanding of how a Tazer works, and what it does to a human body.
Despite the sensational "50,000 volts", that's only the initial jolt to force the "arc-ing" of electricity from where the conducting pins are (which need NOT touching skin) to the skin. Once the connection is established, the voltage actually drops down to a much lower 2000 volts, and only for a pulse that lasts milliseconds.
The way Tazer incapacitates is by sending a T-wave through the muscle tissue that it comes in contact with. All muscles are connected to nerve fibers, and the T-wave shocks the nerve, connected to the central nervous system, into immobility. It should NOT affect the heart, which is controlled by the INVOLUNTARY muscles.
Obviously this was not tested on addicts, and somehow, addicts, and/or those with weak heart, are less tolerant of Taser shocks, as Tazer's history shows.
The problem however, is how some "civil rights activists" are screaming about how these suspect's rights were violated by the use of Taser.
Well, activist, what alternative does the police officers have besides a Tazer to control a potentially violent suspect without killing him? Let's see what the cops usually carry:
* their hands, capable of administering "holds" or other melee techniques
* their baton / billy club / whatever
* their service pistol
* and of course, the Tazer, if they are issued one.
So what's the problem? Service pistol is out, as cops are NOT trick shooters. Shoot the leg. Shoot the arm. Sorry, but they are trained to shoot at center of mass, which is lethal. So forget the pistol.
Baton? To disable a suspect, you pretty much have to beat them over the head and knock them unconscious. Not only will that be likely to be bloody, it may cause a concussion, and a massive lawsuit alleging "police brutality".
Hands? If the police is trained in Juijitsu or similar hold techniques it may be possible, and a reasonable suspect will not further resist. However, getting a non-complaint person into such a hold is nearly impossible without hurting them, and after that they will continue to struggle, hurting themselves. They are NOT reasonable, so any assumption that they will behave reasonably is automatically false. And the chance of the police getting hurt is vastly increased in hand-to-hand combat. What if the police lost control of the pistol in the ensuing struggle?
Tazer is the only reasonable alternative. Why won't people see that?