Saturday, January 10, 2009

That's fucked up!

Oscar Grant, tasered while black, except that oops, sorry, got the taser mixed up with the gun. If you haven't yet heard about this story, why haven't you?

FrenchDoc, writing in her guise as SocProf, explains the socialization behind the actions.


Anonymous said...

You can't confuse a Taser with a firearm if you have any familiarity with them. In the first place, your firearm is holstered on your strong side so you don't have to search for it, while secondary equipment is on your off side.

The only way I would buy the "confused" argument is with a lot of testimony that the officer was a total incompetent.

hipparchia said...

ordinarily i would have agreed with you [the police here all seem to carry their tasers on one side and guns on the other] but i've been getting some first-hand reports on taser training for newbies [in general, not necessarily here locally], and some of it's scarily lax.

BadTux said...

According to the local paper, there was two (2) hours of Taser training for the BART cops, then they were issued their Tasers. That was two months ago. Clearly and utterly inadequate.

That said, anybody confusing a brightly colored lightweight 8 ounce plastic Taser with a black 28 ounce Glock has to be a few loads shy of a full set of marbles. One feels like a toy in your hand (the Taser), the other feels like, well, a handgun. Thus why I labeled this incident, on my blog, as an execution. Like Bryan, I'd need evidence that this cop was a total cretin before buying the "thought a Glock was a Taser" argument.

- Badtux the Execution Penguin

hipparchia said...

i'm not being an apologist here, because whatever the reason behind the action, you've labeled it correctly: it still ends up being an execution.

i still think it's possible for it to be a mixup. which argues, in my not at all humble opinion, that we need a sea change at the policy and procedure levels, kinda like abu ghraib was the fault of a few rogue foot soldiers [not].

anyway, this comment [by wok3] at your blog got me to thinking back on the don't tase me, bro incident, and i've just spent the evening hunting down some references, so the next post on this will just have to get written tomorrow night, as now i have to take the cats out for a last walk before bedtime and feed the dog [or something like that].

Anonymous said...

They have finally arrested the officer who did the shooting. Now, let's hope justice will prevail.

Anonymous said...

It would appear the local DA didn't buy the confusion defense either, because they are charging murder, not manslaughter in the wire reports.

hipparchia said...

that's good, but... allow me to put on my cynic's hat for a moment...

1. anything less than a murder charge, and there was gonna be rioting in the streets [well, more than there already is]. anything to forestall fruitvale is the new watts.

2. if the murder charge sticks, this will all be written off as a one rogue cop, and the wider systemic problems won't get addressed [cf abu ghraib].

BadTux said...

Indeed, my first thought was, "does anybody think they would have arrested this guy if people weren't protesting and rioting in the streets?"

I swear, our leaders make it hard to be non-violent. Violence seems to be the only thing they understand and respond to. Sigh.

- Badtux the Non-violent Penguin