If you are like me, and have watched Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2, you are sitting there in your chair thinking of TASER FACE, and then laughing hysterically.
I will try to stay on topic, but it is so hard not to think of it! When looking for a reputable product to recommend for the defense of your family and home, there is one name that sticks out, and that is Taser.
Taser – The only one on the market
Taser International, now known as Axon, is not just the name of the handheld electroshock devices, but also the name of the company that Police Officers trust and use in the line of duty. That is why it is the product I recommend for self and home defense. That, and the company Taser owns all the patents to the taser, or Conducted Energy Weapon as it is officially called. Minor details, eh?
You might be thinking that there are plenty of companies that sell handheld electroshock devices, but those are known as stun guns, which I cover below. The CEW that shoots the electrodes out at an attacker is known as a taser, and you can only find them at Axon.
That naturally makes Axon the supply chain leader for law enforcement. Axon has expanded their product lines to body cameras and other cutting edge technology, but the taser is still a sought after less-than-lethal weapon to carry when lethal means are not required.
How a Taser Works
To explain how a Taser works actually has quite a bit of scientific study behind it. A microcoulomb is just a measurement that is used to know exactly how much electrical power is being delivered to a subject. The higher the microcoulomb, the more powerful the take down. The company Taser has built in smart chips in their products that deliver electricity in the form of a wave. Just as your microwave works on your homes AC “wave” power, this wave the taser delivers interrupts the brain signals to the muscles, creating a new signal that pulses the muscles. If you have ever received shock therapy at the chiropractor, you understand how a simple shock can take total control of your movements.
The microcoulomb rating has to be powerful enough to subdue the victim. If it is too weak, the victim can get back up or walk through the shock. Too powerful of a microcoulomb rating, and the shock can capture the victim’s heart and cause it to race at an exceedingly fast pace. There are a dozen variables that play in to the effectiveness of the taser, including thick clothing, placement of the electrodes on the body, tangled wires, just to name a few. If a criminal is wearing an extremely thick jacket, the electrical arc may not reach the body, even if the electrode sticks to the jacket.
The stun gun may seem similar, but the biggest difference is HOW the electricity flows through the body. For the taser to be absolutely effective, the electrodes have to be at least 12 to 15 inches apart on the body to induce involuntary muscle movement through the entire body. Smart chips help determine how much voltage needs to be sent to the threat and for how long.
The stun gun has fixed electrodes that are but 2 inches apart. The electricity only conducts through the body at that specific spot, causing a lot of pain on that area and some involuntary muscle movement in that spot. Since the electricity is centralized to one area, the rest of the body is free to operate as normal, which means the threat can stop you from stunning them.
This is why tasers are a prevalent option with authorities, they can preserve the life of the threat while protecting themselves.
A Controversial Issue?
The Taser X26P, and other current models, have been re-engineered to insure the safety of both the victim and the user utilizing the device. We do not want to cause a cardiac event on the victim, but we also want to make sure the victim does not cause harm to the person utilizing the taser.
The company originally was facing dozens of lawsuits claiming that the original taser was too powerful, resulting in deaths from the heart racing too fast, or officers resolving to guns because the taser didn’t stop the threat. Axon changed their products to safer, smarter weapons that had lower microcoulomb ratings, but still claimed to be as effective. Now the company is facing some allegations that the product is not powerful enough, as some police officers have lost their lives when the taser did not subdue the victim.
Why would I still be recommending such a controversial product you might ask? The taser tries to solve a very challenging and complex problem: to subdue a threat through non-lethal means for both parties involved. We are valuing human life over anything else here, on both ends of the spectrum. There are countless cases where guns are not necessary (and plenty that are), so how do you stop a threat without harming yourself or the threat themselves? What if the person has a knife? Going in to hand combat without some kind of weapon to defend with can lead to very unfortunate situations on your part.
Anything can be turned in to a weapon if you need it, but tasers solve a lot of problems in the non-lethal realm of weaponry, including but not limited to:
- Keeping a safe distance from the threat
- It is more effective at taking a person down than most other alternatives like gas bombs
- It is easy to carry on your person
- The cartridges are reloadable, offering back-to-back use
- Quickly disable the threat so they can be cuffed or disarmed
- Is less-than-lethal (some reports state they are very safe and pose no risk of harm)
- Most importantly: preserves life
Why You Need One!
What the most important thing to remember here, is what lengths are you willing to go to protect your family? Regardless of the stipulations and studies of CEW’s, wouldn’t you rather be prepared in the event a threat crosses your family? All we do know, and all we NEED to know, is that the taser is still a very viable unit for self and home defense. Life is worth protecting, even if that threat is infringing on your family.
When you take a look at the landscape that is self defense, there are not a lot of “effective” tools or weapons out there that will give you the advantage. Sure pepper spray will slow a guy down, but what if it blows back in your face? Now you are blinded yourself.
The stun gun will cause pain, but it may not stop the attacker. They could swipe it away from your hand since you are so close to them.
A baseball bat, when landed correctly, will cause a lot of pain too, but I know a lot of people that do not have the upper body strength to make it very effective.
Add to your Arsenal
The taser is the best bet for self defense if you are not willing or able to carry a gun on your person (by choice or legality). A taser has been proven to be extremely effective, and makes for a very lightweight and powerful weapon to keep close by. It should be treated as such too, a weapon, and not a toy to be zapping your buddy with. The taser gives even the feeblest of a person the power to take down a giant, so give it the respect it deserves.
The tasers come with a lot of great features too, as you can read in the next article. And do not get me wrong, each self defense weapon on the market has its place, but you need to pick what is best for the safety of your home.
Last but not least, some states do carry restrictions on the purchase or use of a taser. Taser has fortunately put a nice map together that lists the restrictions for each state, which you can view here. Be sure you are aware of the restrictions of your state before making a purchase.
What do you think? Will you be purchasing a taser? What alternatives do you feel are better? Let me know in the comments, I would like to hear them!