Thursday, February 16, 2017

Drug-testing trigger-happy cops is a good idea

The police are now requiring every officer who fires a shot on duty to undergo mandatory drug and alcohol testing. Good. Its such an obvious safeguard against police misbehaviour that I'm surprised they didn't start doing it decades ago. In fact, its so obvious that even the Police Association agrees with it (though they're not happy with the method, and they're right - blood testing is invasive and requires serious probable cause; urine testing should be enough).

So naturally, Labour's Stuart Nash is opposing it:

Labour police spokesman Stuart Nash said the approach was "very heavy handed".

"It almost seems as if they don't trust the police to use good judgement.

Well no, we don't - not when they're killing people. That's simply not something we can take on trust - every time the police use lethal force against someone, they need to prove to the public that it was justified, otherwise we will take their toys away. We do this with drivers: drug and alcohol testing after car accidents is utterly routine, and rightly so. We damn well should do it when someone points a firearm at another human being. An MP who opposes this is basicly saying that the police should be allowed to kill with impunity, no questions asked. And if that's their view, I really don't want them anywhere near the levers of power.