Taser International Issues WARNING, FINALLY!!!

Taser International has issued a warning!  Well, hot damn, finally!!!  Taser is "warning law officers against firing it at a person's chest because of a 'low risk' of an 'adverse cardiac event.' "  Of course, that is going to have zero effect on how the City of Houston and Harris County, Texas, law enforcement officers behave, which includes shooting (gun, Taser, whatever) at your chest.  Which, IMO, is EXACTLY the reason all the Tasers and other electroshock weapons should be taken away from them all!

And don't think this just affects humans.  I have no doubt at all that officers use or would use electroshock weapons on animals too.  Check out this discussion on the topic.  According to Amnesty International, over 300 humans died after being electroshocked in the US between 2001 and 2008.  We have no one who keeps track of how many animals were shocked, let alone died afterward.  I think every law enforcement agency should be required to disclose each and every deplyment of these electroshock weapons on a public website.

As thrilled as I am that Taser International has finally issued a warning, albeit one that is understated and minimizes the effects of electroshock, I won't get too excited since I think they have ulterior motives here.  They've sold lots and lots of those 50,000 volt models while claiming they were relatively safe.  Of course, they've been a growing company during that time too.  And now, surprise, they have lots of new electroshock and other weapons, including lower voltage ones.  Wanna guess how long before they're saying: "we think the 50,000 volt is safe but, if your department is concerned, we have this lovely new line of lower voltage, blah, blah... models we'll be happy to sell you".  So, time for some good old common sense on this topic.

Sticking your finger in a standard electrical socket is a 110 volt shock.  50,000 volts is like sticking your finger in 450+ standard electrical outlets simultaneously.  So, if they reduce the voltage by 50%, that's like sticking your finger in 225 outlets.  Yeah, that's SO much better!  Give me a break!!!

On the electrical grid, after a substation, most lines are dropped from ultra high voltage to somewhere between 33kV and 110kV.  That's 33,000 volts and 110,000 volts.  THESE are some of the "high voltage" lines the power companies are always warning us to avoid because they are so dangerous.  "While contact with overhead high-voltage lines represents only 5% of total electrical accidents, it is responsible for approximately 45% of the fatalities."  But somehow, every single death after electroshock by law enforcement officers is attributed to something other than the electroshock.  Does that make sense to anyone?

Anything over 600 volts is considered high voltageOSHA requires these be guarded and warning signs posted, even in the residential home building industryOSHA even says one can die from low voltage, they have lots to say on this topic.  I'll be one of the first to say that OSHA tends to be overly conservative but even I can't dismiss the discrepancy between OSHA warning against shocks at 600 volts and electroshock weapon manufacturers claiming 50,000 volt, even multiple 50,000 volt, shocks are "reasonably safe" and considered "non lethal".  And then there's the poor 60 pound dog who dares offend some officer who's knee jerk reaction to everything these days is to shock him/her/it into compliance and submission.

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