June 1, 2020
Petition to
Signatures: 117,857Next Goal: 150,000
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Why this petition matters

Started by Anonymous A

This petition was started for the purpose of restricting or banning the use of tear gas by law enforcement on non violent crowds and other innocent civilians in the United States.

GoFundMe for this cause: All funds go to NAACP

The use of tear gas has been banned and is ILLEGAL in war. This same tear gas is used by the law enforcement, to control unarmed crowds protesting for the BLM movement. Tear gas is also used for border control and is thrown at innocent migrants who are unarmed and pose no sudden threat to anyone in the vicinity. 

The United States has NO SPECIFIC RULES regarding tear gas and requires NO PARTICULAR TRAINING for its use. 

"The use of this chemical agent, which can cause PHYSICAL INJURY, PERMANENT DISABILITY, and even DEATH, is often excessive, indiscriminate, and in violation of civil and human rights. Studies suggest that children are more vulnerable to severe injuries from chemical toxicity: Infants exposed to tear gas can develop severe pneumonitis and require WEEKS OF HOSPITALIZATION. Using it on a crowd of people who were exercising their right to seek asylum at an international border indeed violated human rights norms; using it on a crowd of U.S. citizens engaged in protest is more common and also fraught.

Tear gas cannot distinguish between the young and the elderly, the healthy and the sick, the peaceful and the violent; it cannot tell whether a person is an unarmed rally goer or a curious bystander. That is why it is RARELY APPROPRIATE to use against protesters, and why its use should be regulated."  - ACLU


Q: What happens when protests get violent? Won't tear gas be necessary then?

A: As stated, there are NO rules for using tear gas, that is why this petition also says "OR restrict". Banning might be a far fetched idea, but the use of it definitely needs to be restricted. Police officers should consider when to deploy and when to resort to it. There has to be layers and layers of de-escalation — steps and actions taken by law enforcement— before you reach that point. 

Q: Why is tear gas allowed to use against civillians but not in war?

A: "Things that are classified as riot control agents are exempt from the ban on using chemical weapons and there’s also part of that exemption, which is about defensive versus offensive force. The idea is that if tear gas is used in war, it would be a part of an offensive [operation], whereas when the police use tear gas, it is defensive." - Feigenbaum



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Signatures: 117,857Next Goal: 150,000
Support now

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