Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Vancouver Airport taser death

The video of the October 15 tasering death of Robert Dziekanski at the Vancouver airport was finally made public late today. It was taken by a bystander (and amazingly, turned over to the RCMP without being copied), then kept from the public pending an investigation.

From what I saw on the video, what happened was unnecessary, unacceptable and brought to mind the thuggish brutality of a police state. The cops not only overreacted, but reacted with force far too soon. It was less than 30seconds after they approached that they tasered the guy, and keep in mind, there were three four of them and one of him. If three four cops can't get control of one guy without using a taser, they are in the wrong line of work.

Look at it this way: if the same cops had approached the guy and immediately started kicking the shit out of him, 4 on 1, it would be considered unacceptably savage. A taser can (obviously) be more deadly than a shitkicking, but because it's small and quick, somehow it gets lost that this is exactly what they're doing when they employ that kind of force.

Dr. Dawg has some more thoughts and a link to the video, watch it and make up your own mind.