Friday, December 18, 2009

Alternatives to Taser

I noted in my last blog how some people are incensed at the police for using tasers on people. So, I've decided to come up with some alternatives. The criterion I'm working under is what the taser critics would want: The device has to immobilize a subject without doing any harm at all, without causing any discomfort, and with a due respect for environment and global warming in particular.
So here goes. First, police could be equipped with giant cans of super string. Then, when a person confronts them with a gun, they could run around the person, all the time squirting them with super string until they were wrapped up in a warm cocoon. No, wait. Super string could get in their eyes and possibly blind them, or get in their noses and possibly interfere with their breathing somewhat, or even cause them to topple over and skin a knee. Not to mention the possibility of staining clothes. So, that's out.
How about a giant, soft net -- not one of those hairy, scratchy, hemp ones, but a nice woven nylon with a flexible core. That might work. No, on second thought, it might cause the person to fall over, and they might be allergic to nylon.
So, why not just set phasers on "stun." No, because there may be some persons who will react poorly to being stunned. After all, a phaser is just a 23rd century taser (they even sound alike).
Fact is, there is no 100% sure-fire, works-every-time, never-a-hitch way of subduing someone who's gone berserk, or, as we like to say, postal.
So, instead of carping, I'd suggest we thank the police for putting themselves in harm's way for us, and suggest, oh so gently, that they are thoroughly trained in using the devices. And, oh, we can remind the manufacturers that they need to tell us where and where not to nail people.