I can only imagine what it is like to be a police officer today. The world we leave in is a dangerous place. Although I feel that racial profiling does, unfortunately, ignite a lot of fear in police officers, their overall fear on the job is not completely unwarranted.
I try to imagine stopping a random stranger on the side of the road and approaching his or her car. I try to imagine going to a stranger’s home to investigate a domestic dispute call and not knowing how violent the aggressor is. That is certainly not a job that I could personally take on, and I commend police officers for taking on that role.
With the fear of the unknown, I understand the need for protection. I certainly would not roam the city without a sufficient method of protection. That being said, I often wonder why guns are the primary method of choice. I also wonder why there are not more alternative uses of protection available. I know that there are Tasers, and I think that they are an excellent alternative to guns. However, I do not understand why they are not used more. I read an article written by a retired cop who said that guns are used more often, because you may only have one option of defense if the aggressor comes at you with deadly force. The article also explained that for Tasers, there needs to be contact of the skin with both electrodes. If that contact does not happen, the Taser will be ineffective.
After reading that article, I can understand why guns are used more often. I just don’t understand why we have not improved the Taser or worked on creating another alternative. Guns are extremely deadly, yet very easy to use. A lot of police officers are not in danger of “deadly force” when they are dealing with citizens. They panic, and they immediately grab their guns, because they know that that will stop the problem. But at the end of the day, it does not stop the problem, and a lot of innocent people are killed.
I am not the one creating these weapons, so I cannot speak on how easy it is to create a new weapon that will be effective while also protecting police officers. However, I do know that we spend a lot of money and time arresting and incarcerating people for marijuana charges, but we cannot seem to spend the time and money on finding an alternative to guns for police officers. Police officers are not the only ones who need to protected, citizens do too. A misunderstanding should not lead to a gunshot wound to the chest. I think that we have enough intelligent individuals who can come up with a non-deadly form of protection for police officers, that it is more effective than the Taser.