Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Long Range Acoustic Device (LRAD) Used Against Peaceful Protest Of Detroit Water Shut-Off

You knew when you read about the development of the LRAD that its use would extend far beyond mere acoustic communications over long distances.

You knew from its use against protesters at the 2004 Republican National Convention that its use as a police weapon would not be confined to control of violent crowds.

And you learned last Friday that Detroit police used it against peaceful protesters at the entrance to Homrich, "a demolition contractor working on a $5.6 million deal to perform the water shutoffs on residents." There's a video on the linked post; despite the manifestly peaceful nature of the protest, the LRAD fires up near the end of the video. All claims aside, the actual clear purpose of the LRAD is physical intimidation of protesters.

Live in Detroit. Miss a water bill. Have your water shut off along with thousands of other households, as part of a "Detroit Water Collection Project." Join an organized peaceful protest of that over‑the‑top action which surely endangered public health. And in response, have your protest physically assaulted by a sound weapon intended for military use or violent crowd control. Got the picture?

The first arrest the cops made was of a guy in a wheelchair. I've spent time in a wheelchair; I didn't attend any protests while I was wheel-bound... it's just not safe. You've got to admire the man for his courage. I hope he was treated with basic human respect. But I wouldn't bet on it.

The cops used presumably the same weapon or its cousin against Occupy Detroit in May 2012, dispersing another pointedly peaceful protest. Do you see a pattern here?

"Land of the free, home of the brave"... MFA!

A small hand-portable LRAD. Notice that it is illustrated as held by police, not military personnel. Even the smallest LRADs are capable of generating sound at levels capable of damaging human hearing. As small as they are, devices like this one have a range of about a half mile.

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