Can anyone see a day when citizens will have updatable microchip IDs implanted into them, complete with criminal and medical records?
Carrying an ID card embedded with such a chip is the possible bridge technology. "Chipped" cards, and cheap smart phones equipped with the same feature, may eventually converge and become the Universal and Mandatory ID.
Of course, not every citizen may wish to, or be capable of, carrying their ID consistently. The incorrigible, forgetful and incapable could still be implanted physically as we do now with our pets.
Regardless, a cop's job would be easier: scan the erratic suspect from a distance and proceed with tactics suited to their profile.
Civil liberties? If current trends hold, citizens may not even care. We might even demand it.
And I doubt PDs would oppose.
I posted the above as a comment to the Patch piece, Kelly Thomas: Schizophrenic and on the Street, about a year ago. Kelly Thomas was beaten to death by Fullerton police officers when he failed to follow officers' commands while being detained, searched and arrested. His father had been a Deputy to the OC Sheriff's Dept.
Two years ago this coming December, an extremely intoxicated Doug Zerby was shot and killed by Long Beach police officers in a Belmont Shore residential courtyard. Doug was blind drunk, sitting on a friend's landing, fiddling with a hose nozzle that a 911 caller (and officers) mistook for a gun.
Editor Nancy Wride and the BelmontShore-Naples Patch covered the story aggressively from the get-go and commentary onsite was vigorous and extensive:
Police Chief: Autopsy Shows Doug Zerby's Arms Outstretched When Officers Fatally Shot Him
DA Rules Zerby Shooting by LB Police Justified
A little over a week ago, David Jordan, a twenty-year-old autistic man with the mental capacity of an eight-year-old, was shot to death in his home by Long Beach police officers while agitated and brandishing a knife.
Family of Slain Autistic College Student: We Called for an Ambulance Not Police
In its wake, retired LBPD Sgt John B. Greet wrote an interesting Patch essay titled, Officer Involved Shootings: Tragic Even When Justified.
Ok, honestly, isn't it about time we all "chip-up," enable a force-multiplying technology, one of a type the Chief said will become necessary as budgetary constraints reduce the cop-to-citizen ratio?
Well, not you, of course (you're obviously not the problem) but the demonstrably anti-social, odd, addled, mentally ill or eccentric at least?
Will that be all right?