The “case” for excessive force

At Monday night’s Phillies game a fan ran onto the field and was tasered until he collapsed. As opposed to recognizing this incident for what it was (a grossly unprofessional abuse of police power) it became “controversial”. Because, you see, there are many people out there who somehow think it’s okay to send thousands of volts of electricity coursing through a persons’ body for the heinous crime of briefly interrupting a sporting event.

But the case that’s always been made in favor of such obviously disproportionate uses of force has been deterrence – if people see how bad the punishment is, they won’t commit the crime. Which is, of course, why there are no more murders committed in countries with the death penalty on the books, and why no fans in Philly will ever run onto the field again.

Oh, wait, my bad. That’s not how it works. The way it actually works is that the US, the only Western democracy that has yet to abolish capital punishment, ranks first in murder rate amongst such nations, and another fan ran onto the field in Philly the next fucking day.

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