According to responsible authority figures in the Media, these are rubber bullets:
…And this is a Choke-hold:
Didn’t think I’d get a chance to make this blog about actual Judo, but here we are. No, journalists, this is not a choke-hold. This is a variation on a half nelson. It is a control hold that would not in any way choke or strangle the victim. Actual strangleholds are going to involve three, or at the very least two points of contact with the neck. Other wise you just aren’t going to get any real constriction of blood-flow or air flow.
This is an example of what an effective stranglehold looks like:
Just kidding. This:
See how the upper arm cuts off blood flow to the left side of the neck, and the forearm cuts off blood flow to the right side, and then the right arm closes off space in the back and tightens the hold? There are a variety of ways to successfully strangle or choke someone, but they’ll all follow the same principles. At no point on camera did an actual choke-hold take place. The argument could be made that the officer put the victim in a choke-hold when the camera was blocked, except for the fact that the victim himself told us this was not true…
I genuinely wonder if any of the “I can’t breathe” protesters have taken a first aid class. If so, they should have learned that a person saying “I can’t breathe” or anything else is an indicator that they aren’t actually choking. (Because if they couldn’t breathe, they wouldn’t be able to say anything at all.)
I recall after the disappointing outcome of the Casey Anthony trial seeing a lot of people express that we shouldn’t all second guess the decision since we aren’t legal experts, weren’t in the courtroom etc. That degree of forbearance was nice to see, not quite enough to get me to believe in Democracy again, but still, nice. However when the police are involved, it seems that all such wisdom and forbearance goes out the window. Suddenly people who despise violence, have no experience or knowledge of it personally, and who semi-secretly despise those who make it a part of their profession are suddenly experts on violent encounters (not to mention legal proceedings) who are fully qualified to convict police officers in the court of public opinion.
Obviously it’s a tragedy when someone dies accidentally, but that’s what this was, an accident. There would be no reason for the police officers in question to suspect that what they were doing was likely to kill a person. Even if a real stranglehold was involved, which it wasn’t this is a maneuver so safe that teenagers are routinely allowed to use it in athletic competition. Freak accidents happen. Unfortunately when they happen in the context of the contemporary racist police witch-hunt, they end up being the nations top media story instead of a personal tragedy for those involved. Condolences to the deceased’s family and friends. And also to the officer involved and his family and friends who will undoubtedly face severe repercussions.