Choke holds. Watch just about any mixed martial arts (MMA) match and you are bound to see it excuted or attempted. In fact, untold numbers of practioners of Brazillian Jujitstu; Judo; Mixed Martial arts, Jujitsu and dozens of other martial art styles teach it. It is a basic submission. And just about everyone who has learned it has been rendered momentarily unconcious by it in turn because in order to execute it, it is important to know what it feels like. For anyone seriously interested in self-protection understanding how to “choke someone out” is a valuable skill set.
Rendering someone unconscious through a choke hold lasting several seconds and placing your weight through your knee on a person’s neck for almost nine minutes are quite different. Night and day different.
And yet here we are. Politicians and citizens are demanding an end to “choke holds” when police officers already operate under degrees of restraint. Where will the line be drawn? How should an officer react when he or she is fighting for his or her life? Is it ok to execute a “choke hold” then? What about when a suspect is out of his mind on meth and can’t feel a taser? What if a suspect is wielding a weapon or already took human life? The number of “what if”scenarios is staggering.
Criminals don’t have to concern themselves with degrees of restraint. They can choke, stab, gouge, shoot, and claw their way to escape. But police have a higher moral standard and they use generally use the amount of force necessary to control the situation. Not an easy proposition under the best of conditions. It is easy for these shameless politicians and so-called activists to demand the banning of “choke holds” as none of them (or their children) will ever have to contend with uncooperative suspects resisting arrest,or attempting to kill them for simply wearing a blue uniform.
Why not ban tasers, after all, a suspect coud hit his head on the pavement and die. Or batons for the same reason. Certainly firearms because they are clearly dangerous. Handcuffs are humiliating and can hurt and of course police crusiers are scary. They should be changed too. And yet most citizens would agree these steps would be too much. So why ban a choke, a move that is allowed in sport competition?
Most police officers I know turned to that profession for altruistic reasons, the drive to be protectors of society. It certainly couldn’t be for the money. I know one officer who just joined a police force to make all of $17.00/hr.
Don’t make an already enourmously difficult job harder by placing needless restrictions on police officers. Better to hold people acountable—whether they are police officers who use excessive force needlessly, or protestors who deface the memorials and pull down public statues because they are “offended” by it. Accountability should be applied across the board—not just to the the men and women who are sworn to protect and serve and do so on a daily basis.