The Bag Lady heard a story on the radio a while back about an escaped bull running wild in town. Apparently, this bull escaped from the stockyards on the north end of the city, and made his way through town. The story on the radio said the bull ended up on the south side of the city, in a stand-off with the police. The bull went on a rampage, charging vehicles and people, and the police eventually had to shoot him.
When the Cowboy came home from work, he told the Bag Lady the ‘Paul Harvey’ version of the story. Apparently, the bull had finally played out and settled down when some genius police officer decided to subdue him further with his Taser gun! Now, the Taser delivers enough voltage to temporarily immobilize a human being, but bulls generally weigh around 2000 lbs. and all that jolt of electricity did was piss the bull off, sending him into a rampage that ultimately ended in his death.
The Bag Lady wonders if that police officer learned anything. Or if anyone else involved in that incident learned anything. She also wonders why they didn’t call someone who knows how to deal with cattle to assist them in this matter. There was no need to Taser the animal, and would have been no need to shoot him if they hadn’t used the Taser in the first place. If the police had left him alone, he would have eventually settled down enough to be enticed into a stock trailer and returned to the stockyard, with a tale to impress the rest of the herd.
There was another story regarding a similar incident in the States (Ohio? Iowa? Idaho?) with a much happier ending. Seems a fellow was transporting some cows when he decided to pull into a McDonald’s drive-thru. Somehow, the trailer door came unlatched and out tumbled 6 or 8 cows. Probably trying to escape what they thought was their ultimate fate! They were eventually rounded up and returned to the trailer.
Years ago, we had a very young calf that got stepped on somehow and ended up with a broken shoulder. The Cowboy discovered the poor little thing one morning, so we hustled the calf into the truck and away to the vet they did go. The vet examined the calf, bound up his leg with some really pretty purple vet wrap, gave the cowboy some instructions for care, then sent them on their way. Now this had all happened before the cowboy had even had coffee, so he decided to hit the drive-thru at McDonald’s for a much-needed cup. Imagine the fuss when the girl working the drive-thru saw the cute little calf in the passenger seat with the purple cast! Every single employee had to come to the window to have a peek (much to the annoyance of the people in the line-up behind him!) Our famous little calf was the talk of McDonald’s AND the talk of the pasture when he showed up sporting his purple cast. He recovered very quickly and was bouncing around with his buddies in record time. Probably got tons of mileage out of the story - it either made him very popular or a laughing stock…he never would tell us. (But I digress.)
There have been several instances in the news lately of deaths related to Tasers, but the Bag Lady is pretty sure this one won’t make national news. It is just one more example of the police relying on their new-fangled equipment rather than good old-fashioned common sense. The Bag Lady is well aware that in this age of drugs and violence, the police are doing a job that not many of us would want, and she is also aware that, with the deaths of several police officers over the past few years in Canada, they are more prone to act first and ask questions later, but in the case of the bull, at least, she thinks they were just a little too eager to use the Taser. They were also pretty hasty to use the Taser in the Vancouver airport. She has seen the video (who in Canada hasn’t?!) and it appears that the police in question did not even attempt to communicate with that poor fellow. Were they afraid he was armed? He had just gotten off an airplane – what the hell kind of weapon could he possibly have been carrying?
So again, the Bag Lady wonders if the police officers involved in this and other instances of Taser use have learned anything. What has happened to the fine art of negotiation? The Bag Lady does not want to appear critical of the police – she feels that Canada has the best police force in the world – but she also feels they need to re-examine the use of Tasers in certain circumstances.
How do the rest of you feel? Should the use of Tasers be more closely regulated?