Readers respond -- When should police resort to deadly force?

Each week we select a news story, column or letter tot he editor that’s generated a lot of discussion at and reprint some of those reader comments here.

This weeks’ topic is the following letter to the editor by Jane Smith of Rochester:

"How many more people will it take who get shot and get killed senselessly, some of them innocent children or innocent bystanders?

"No one deserves to die from the hands of a police officer, especially with the new technology of Tasers or maybe police dogs.

"It makes me so angry why we are not as smart as the United Kingdom, with tighter gun control. I lived in the U.K.; the serious crime was purse-snatching, maybe a stabbing, and drugs, too.


"Wake up, America; we don't have to shoot to kill."

"No police officer deserves to die in the hands of a criminal either, but that happens and no one says a word. How about everyone minds the laws and gets over themselves. Law enforcement is there to protect and serve..."

"We live in a dangerous world and ought to be thankful that there are brave officers who risk their own safety to enforce the laws. The fact that so few innocent people are injured when the police are responding to the many illicit activities is a testament to the great job they do."

"...Police officers are people too, with families. They are sworn to protect society, and just like you would like to go home to their families after work. When interacting with police, it’s important to cooperate, listen, and comply with lawful commands. Most, if not all ‘police incidents’ could be harmlessly resolved if people would only follow police directives..."

"When a cop tells you to freeze, stop, etc., go ahead and listen to them. If you don’t, then I say go with the deadly force. Police are pretty well-trained and know what they’re doing. I get pretty sick about hearing what great people these criminals are."

"I am wondering why they shoot at the guy in Dodge Center as he was driving away. I know that police chases are deadly too, but to shoot a guy ... as he is running is less than courageous."

"Why is killing over a health question the right thing to do? Drug use should be a health question, not a police situation."

"The reason police went to more firepower is that they were being outgunned. Sorry that the shooting took place, but drugs kill, directly and indirectly."


"I would like to point out what a great job law enforcement has done at the RNC. I have yet to hear of any deadly or excessive force used despite the taunting and throwing feces and urine on law enforcement officials. I cannot understand how a person thinks its OK to throw feces or urine on another person in a form of protest or for any other reason."

"I see no reason for the cops, or law-abiding citizens, to disarm as long as criminals remain armed and dangerous. Unfortunately, you seem to care more about the welfare of the criminals. Gun control is nothing more than criminal protection and victim disarmament..."

"You seem to be infatuated with the wisdom and virtuousness of the Socialist system in the UK. A nation that DOES NOT have a Constitution to protect their inalienable rights..."

"Taking guns from law abiding people is the first step of a Totalitarian society."

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