Fuck Your Breath

Fuck Your Breath

Corey WilsonWednesday,15 April 2015

Once upon a time, when I was but knee high to a moose, I was playing with dry-erase markers in my parents’ basement. At that time, our house was painted all white, so to my fine eye it seemed as if the house was asking for it. I told myself that it was okay to draw on the walls because, “I’m pretty sure these are dry-erase markers.” Turns out, they were not dry-erase markers; they were Sharpies. Naturally, I was in a tonne of shit. The walls were full of poorly drawn army men, and elegantly drawn explosions (explosions are so easy). When my parents came downstairs, I tried desperately to explain that I had just made a mistake; I thought I could erase it all. The response I got was, obviously, it doesn’t matter what you thought would happen. I’d fucked up the damn walls, and I’d have to deal with the consequences of my lack of forethought.

That was a hard time for me; I was forced to clean up my doodling by hand, alone. Unfortunately for me, if I had only been a 73-year-old insurance executive from Tulsa, accidentally using a sharpie instead of a dry-erase would’ve been a great excuse!

I feel bad for Bob Bates, the 73-year-old insurance executive slash reserve cop who shot a subdued Eric Harris (on tape). Bates claimed after, that he had intended on using his taser, and not his .38 caliber pistol. If that’s true, then I can only imagine the guilt he must be feeling. He’ll be going to jail (likely for the rest of his life), because of an accident. But after 2nd-degree manslaughter charges were filed against him, this happened.

Tulsa County Sheriff Stanley Glanz said this. “He made an error. How many errors are made in an operating room every week?

I’ve submitted the above to Dictionary.com to be the new definition of a false analogy. Because it’s not even the same fucking thing. A doctor is trying to save—faaack! Never mind.

Tulsa police Sgt. Jim Clark, who investigated the case, said that the shooting was not a crime, and did not violate department policy.

What? Accidentally shooting a guy (which resulted in his death) is not a crime. I don’t—but—okay, moving on.

Clark went on to say that a psychological phenomenon called “slip and capture,” where someone’s behaviour “slips” off the intended path after being “captured” by a stronger response was the cause of Bates’ accident.

That’s terrifying, but also meaningless because it doesn’t matter if Bates was a “victim” (as per Clark’s words) of “slip and capture.” He was given a gun, and given the responsibility to use it properly. He fucking failed to do so. Therefore, just as I was forced to pay for the mess I made on my parents’ walls, Bates must pay for killing a man. And I really, truly mean it when I say I feel bad for him.

I get that Bates is a valued member of the Tulsa Police Department, so it’s hard to look your friend in the eye and say, “You’re guilty.” But to say that he “did not commit a crime,” says two things. One, you’re fucking delusional, or two, the law that exonerates Bates is beyond fucked up.

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