Police Introduce ‘Restraining Bags’ in Escalation of War Against the Mentally Ill
The tone of policing in America is on a downward spiral as cops around the nation are hardening themselves against a public that is growing more and more frightened of the thin blue line. Along with many well-publicized incidents that make it to national media, many concerning changes are happening outside of the limelight. An example of this is a new living body bag that is being used to restrain uncooperative individuals.
Earlier this year the New York Police Department (NYPD), an organization of some 34,000 uniformed officers and an annual budget surpassing $5 billion, introduced a new crime fighting device, the ‘restraining bag,’ or as it is sometimes affectionately called, ‘the burrito.’ It is essentially a full-body sized duffel bag that officers can stuff a perpetrator into and cart him off to jail like a piece of luggage.
Manufactured by DeSantis Gunhide, a division of HELGEN Industries Inc., the EDP bag, which is an acronym for ’emotionally disturbed person,’ retails from $750 to $899 and has already been used hundreds of times in 2016 by the NYPD. As reported by Gothamist, the EDP bag was used 122 times in a 110 day period between January and April of 2016, with one very disturbing incident being caught on video by a concerned bystander.
“In March, a video was posted to YouTube showing NYPD macing a man and then restraining him in what the uploader described as a “body bag,” zipping it all the way over the arrested man’s head.
The man restrained in the bag in the video posted in March allegedly failed to pay his subway fare, the Times reports, and he’s said to have became violent when officers tried to arrest him, flailing his arms, kicking, and spitting. He allegedly struck one officer in the head with his elbow and injured another. He now faces charges for felony assault, among others—but his lawyer, Andrew Miller, says that’s completely backwards.”
The idea, as we’re told, is that the bag will protect police officers from seriously disturbed people, but apparently the definition of ’emotionally disturbed’ is so loose that it includes the most basic hopeless efforts of resisting arrest or actively protesting treatment by police, even for crimes as trivial as failure to pay for the subway.
“Use of such restraint traumatizes a person in emotional distress and exacerbates the condition and experience of the crisis for the individual. It is a dehumanizing tactic, and promotes stigma against people with mental health issues.” Carla Rabinowitz, of Community Access
In reality, however, this is yet another abuse in the long and growing list of dehumanizing measures being used by American law enforcement in the pursuit of exacting total government control over any beings who inhabit the physical space known as the United States of America. And people with mental health problems do have greater reason to be afraid of police as it is shockingly common for officers to use deadly force against the deaf, the autistic, the deranged, or the out of control, even when contacted by family members who are seeking help in resolving non-violent conflict.
According to the website Cops Plus:
“New York officers are familiar with the unfortunate routine of bringing in an emotionally-disturbed person (EDP) to the psychiatric emergency room or temporarily to a holding cell. With these incidents in mind, DeSantis has developed the EDP Bag to specifically meet the needs of professionals in Emergency Service Units. The bag is a modern straightjacket reinvented, securing EDPs from the scene of an incident and safely transporting them to a hospital for appropriate care if they pose a danger to themselves or others. The durable bag features seven carry handles for an even weight distribution. Crafted from strengthened, porous materials, the bag allows for bodily fluids to pass. DeSantis’ bag is easy to clean and disinfect after each use.”
Instead of re-thinking brutal tactics or increasing accountability for officers like Daniel Pantaleo who choked New Yorker Eric Garner, a father of six, to death for illegally selling cigarettes on the street, the NYPD is doubling down on its intent to control people at all costs, even though the result will undoubtedly be a greater rift between citizens and police.
The roots of the problem lie in training, lack of accountability, militarization, hiring practices, a culture of ‘brotherhood’ and a general shift in consciousness of local, state, and national government, and new devices and tactics like these are only a symptom of these problems.
Read more articles by Isaac Davis.
About the Author
Isaac Davis is a staff writer for WakingTimes.com and OffgridOutpost.com Survival Tips blog. He is an outspoken advocate of liberty and of a voluntary society. He is an avid reader of history and passionate about becoming self-sufficient to break free of the control matrix. Follow him on Facebook, here.
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