Tuesday, August 19, 2014

7 Things: The Tear Gas Edition

I kept holding off on this post, hoping it would become unnecessary. But, here we are.
1. There are a few kinds of tear gas, but ultimately it's an aerosolized irritant.  It inflames the mucus membranes in the eyes, nose, mouth, and throat making them feel inflamed, itchy, and irritated.
2. It can also causing burning, itching, and peeling of the skin.
3. Tear gas can be fitted to a gun, with a blank cartridge. So reports of shots followed by tear gas, might just be the deployment of the tear gas, rather than a cause and response scenario.
4. Not to make this all about me, but I take three medications a day to assist with my allergies and asthma so I can hopefully breathe normally. Given that an estimated 1 in 12 people have asthma, it's highly likely when you gas a town night after night, that some of these people are asthma sufferers.  Asthma is certainly not the only condition that would be exacerbated by tear gas, all sorts of illnesses would be impacted. 
5. It also, as you may expect has a greater effect on children.
6. I saw some people wondering on social media why people would bring their kids to a protest that by now has a pattern of erupting into violence.  Here's the story of a family who stayed in, and gave refuge to one reporter.  They have to turn their AC off to try to slow the creep of tear gas into their house.
7. Tear gas, per the Chemical Weapons Convention, which the US signed, the use of tear gas is banned in foreign wars, it however remains allowed for use against your own citizens.