1 Sep 2007

Old Chestnuts!

BBC report: Concerns have been raised for public safety as Taser stun guns are made available to more police officers in England and Wales. Predictably, the old chestnuts of 'untrained police officers' using them 'indiscriminately' has tripped off the tongues of human rights groups, notably Amnesty International. Their 'Arms Programme Director', Oliver Sprague said: "We're worried that this could be the start of a slippery slope"...
Hello, join the 'real world', we've been on that 'slippery slope' for some time now and far too many police officers have been killed or seriously injured trying to protect those 'human rights' Amnesty so valiantly defend. Where are the 'human rights' of the police officer or innocent member of the public who is murdered or maimed by some thug on the street?
Article 2 of The Human Rights Act 1998 gives us all the right to life and, a police officer has the obligation to defend that right by the use of reasonable force if necessary. Now Amnesty may question whether or not the use of Taser is 'reasonable force' and probably quiet correctly. However, the Independent Police Complaints Commission has said; Taser discharges are now only to be referred to the IPCC if the discharge has resorted in death or serious injury, caused a danger to the public or revealed failings in command. They appear to trust us (for a change), why can't others?
The UK is not some tin pot third world country where the police run amok at the whim of some military dictator. In the UK the police operate under strict codes of conduct and, the IPCC rigorously enforce those codes. Often to the extent whereby an officer suspected of a breach is treated as 'guilty until proven innocent', the exact opposite of everyone else in society!
The Telegraph even rolled out the retired 'policing expert' former Scotland Yard commander John O’Connor who expressed his concern at the news by saying; "I think the notion of giving these guns, these Taser guns, out indiscriminately to untrained officers - because it's a non-lethal option - they're going to run the risk of these things being used far too indiscriminately". He should know better as a former commander of the Metropolitan Police 'Flying Squad' however, as that unit hasn't always been know for doing things correctly and, he is now a director of a commercial security firm (and probably got paid for his comment), his view may well be tainted!
Do Amnesty and others really think cops in the UK are going to run around Tasering people indiscriminately? Let's get real here!

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