The Hazards of Opening One’s Mouth

Joy Bayhar opened her mouth and all sorts of stupidity flowed out. Of the policeman who shot the young woman with a knife, she said, “He should have fired a warning shot.” “He should have shot straight up in the air.” “He should have used his Taser.”

Let me take the last one first. A Taser only has an effective range of about 10 feet. As near as I could tell from the videos the officer was at least 3 to 4 times that far. This also put her out of range of any other physical methods such as kicking her or striking her with a club. She was even out of range of a good horse whip. Time and distance eliminated all other forms of restraint besides the gun. Even then, if he did not act quickly, both might have ended up dead, the one from the knife, the other from the gun.

Shooting a bullet into the air is stupid, illegal and downright useless. Had he shot up in the air, it would not have stopped the woman from using the knife — and — the bullet might have come down on some passerby’s head. That sort of thing has happened before. That is why it is illegal.

Shooting a warning shot sounds nice, but where is the bullet going to go. It might work in war. Certainly ships still shoot warning shots across the bow of other ships. However, it is dangerous and inappropriate in situations such as this. Worse, it could result in a hostage situation. The perpetrator could pull the victim between her and the officer while continuing to hold the knife. Then what is the officer supposed to do?

Something else that might have happened even after he shot her. The perp might not have died right away. Indeed sometimes it may take as many as four or five shots to bring a person down, especially if they are on dope. It was horrible the way it turned out, but, given the circumstances, it was unavoidable.

I say circumstances because of how things were when the officer arrived on the scene. The fact is, it all went wrong long before he arrived. I really think, instead of investigating the shooting, we need to figure out what happened that led to these circumstances and see that they are not repeated. That is the real way to save lives. That way, the officer won’t have to be called out and he won’t have to shoot anyone.

In essence, this woman was killed before the 911 call was made. Joy Bayhar, if she was thinking, just might have mentioned that, instead of complaining about the one true hero in this whole thing. In any case, Bayhar should adhere to an old and true saying, before opening mouth, engage brain. Well, come to think of it, she might have done it that way, which would speak to her intelligence, or lack there of.

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