Imagine you’ve just gotten on a J train at Marcy Avenue, and you’re going over the Williamsburg Bridge when you turn to your left and see a fellow passenger is assembling an explosive device. You alert an MTA employee, who confronts the bombmaker with… a Metrocard? A walkie-talkie? “There is nothing that MTA employees have to match that level of violence,” State Senator Eric Adams told the Fort Greene Patch. Such a scenario, thought up by Adams, is why the senator thinks that certain transit workers should be allowed to carry Tasers on the job.
His bill wouldn’t demand that workers carry the (sometimes) not-lethal weapons—it would just give the MTA authority to allow certain employees to carry them if the agency deemed it necessary. Adams doesn’t foresee a future of bus drivers and train conductors assaulting every pandhandler, direction-asker, and irate passenger who can’t believe the G isn’t running. “A police officer is not authorized to use a gun when he is not allowed to use it, and a transit employee would not be allowed to used his Taser in a situation that is not authorized,” he told the website. You know—he’d only use it in literal life and death situations, when Al Qaeda’s on the Bridge and the Marines are stuck in Manhattan.