Tuesday, 9 August 2005

Police tasers: Good for them, good for us

New Zealand's Police Force are considering the use of Tasers "to 'induce compliance' without substantial risk to the offender, police or the public." At the same time New Zealand's public will still be barred from possessing Tasers, pepper spray or even Mace to protect themselves from criminals.

The argument against New Zealanders being allowed to defend themselves with these simple self-defence tools just doesn't stack up. It used to be argued by the police that we shouldn't need to defend ourselves since the police would be there quickly enough to do it for us.

George Hawkins fixed that line of argument.

It is also claimed that a person with pepper spray for example might have it taken away and then turned around on them -- but presumably if one has felt the need to draw on such a device the situation is already serious, and at least by drawing it you've given yourself a chance you wouldn't have had otherwise. And whose right is it to make the decision of how you defend yourself anyway? Yours? Or Philip Alpers's and Helen Clark's?

Perhaps the main practical reason to allow ownership of such things is to discourage criminal attack by letting criminals know that people do have such things about their person, and they can't expect an easy ride if they do try and attack someone who looks otherwise defenceless.

Imagine if pizza delivery companies for example let it be known that their delivery staff were armed with one of these devices and trained to use them in their own defence. Perhaps then the mother of murdered pizza deliver man Michael Choy would not still be grieving today. And as I asked here a few months ago, what's a woman to do when they have been banned from using such simple devices as Tasers, mace and pepper sprays. These devices are perfect for people that can't rely on their own strength or the skill of a martial art to protect them.

This is not a matter of politics, it is a matter of life and death: specifically of our own life and the right to defend it. If the police should be able to defend themselves, then so should we. And as author Carl Hiassen says to those who might object to the police using such things, "it's still safer for people to be shooting at each other with Tasers than with Glocks."

Picture Credit


  1. I wondered by PC would need self defense weapons. But then I saw the post that claimed that bridges are not art.

    May I suggest you take swimming leasons PC?

  2. It's a poor subtitute, but a dry powder fire extinguisher makes a good close-range burglar repellant, at pepper spray range. Make breathing difficult for the recipiant and is fairly problematic for a socialist govamint to ban...

  3. Oswald, you said, "a dry powder fire extinguisher makes a good close-range burglar repellant."

    But damned hard to fit one in your purse, don't you think? ;-)

  4. Especially the 2kg one, I have next to the bed!

    (it can put out fires, too ;-)

  5. In the US our police are an extension of the civilians, not the government/military. They cant carry OC spray? Its just concentrated pepper oil. Sounds like the government there is repressive towards its people. When the government bans all weapons, but yet they still carry them that is a repressive government.


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