The story of a ninety-five year old NSW nursing home resident being tasered by police has generated lots of clicks (and therefore advertising revenue) and created an outcry on social media.
It does seem shocking. It also seems like the “outrage on demand” stories that appear almost daily on social media.
Outrage is a very satisfying feeling. We should be wary of it; the encouragement it gives us to think ourselves superior, the easy excuse to think others evil, and the way it justifies words and actions which may be cruel and have consequences worse than the event about which we were told to outraged.
The lady in the news story may have been threatening another resident with the knife she was wielding. Or may have been on the verge of stabbing herself. Or police may indeed have acted precipitously to protect themselves. All we really know is that experienced staff called police because they were not able to resolve the situation safely.
Let’s delay both judgement and outrage until we know what really happened. And don’t hate just because the media tells us to.