The last time I wrote about our attendance at the Citizen's Police Academy, Matt hadn't been tased yet.
(The English major in me has gone back and forth on the past tense of taser several times. Is it tased, or tasered? The officer teaching our class says 'tased,' but he also says 'burgled' so I take his verb conjugation with a grain of salt. On the upside, the attorney at work this week asked which form of "compli/ement" to use when referencing a group of attorneys, and my English degree and I were thrilled to have the correct answer for him.)
We arrived at class the night of the taser presentation, and the officer slid a three page waiver across the table to Matt and said, "Can you just sign this?"
The paralegal in me said LET'S READ EVERY SINGLE WORD, and also, IS ALL OF OUR INSURANCE UP TO DATE?
Matt did indeed sign the waiver, and then we waited one entire hour while a detective came in and taught us all about tasers and why they're so effective.
In short, because they're debilitating.
STEP RIGHT UP, MATT.
After we had a quick break for soft pretzels, Matt was called to the front of the room. At that moment, several (handsome) young men walked through the side door.
"Are you the paramedics?" asked a woman in our class.
"No ma'am," they said, "We are the SWAT Team. We're just here to watch."
And then, Matt was tased/tasered. I stood at the back of the room and couldn't even watch, but here he is afterwards with a few of his adoring fans.
The taser makes your muscles contract 19 times per second, for five seconds, and when the electric charge ended, Matt said very matter of factly, "Well, that hurt."
He said it was the worst pain he's felt in his whole life, and will never do anything to get tasered.
Which means he is going to have to give up his life of crime.
All jokes aside, the officers talked at length about how tasers have changed policing significantly, in a positive way, and how they're so grateful for that option.
We finished our Citizen's Police Academy classed a few weeks ago, and with all the controversy surrounding police departments these days, I have to say that I'm thankful for ours.
I know that nobody is perfect, but our police department is one whose officers reflect the citizens they serve and values the community they serve in.
And don't worry, I'm not considering a career change. I could hardly stand straight under the weight of that vest!