This little news item on New York magazine is about people who were pepper sprayed by NYPD Deputy Inspector Anthony “Tony Baloney” Bologna seeking damages. The actual headline was “NYPD’s Occupy Pepper Spraying Sparks More Lawsuits, Calls for Police Oversight” but the link to the story just said “Occupy’s Pepper Spray Suit.”
I can’t be the only person who saw that and though “oh, they developed some kind of functional garment to protect against the effects of pepper spray, that’s a great idea.” Now, in hindsight, it’s pretty silly to think that there might be some subgroup of protestors with the wherewithal to invent the Iron Man Mark VIII Civil Disobedience Suit, or even the Pepper Poncho. There are probably some intense people out there who think they should just get sprayed for the sake of public sympathy. But this is an idea whose time has come.
Pepper spray is not something armies worry about. It’s not on the 1%’s radar as something they fear or from which they need to defend their armed surrogates. Maybe until now people considered pepper spray to be a threat exclusive to violent criminals and other horrible types who, despite representing a potential potential for profit, have no twisted benefactors to invent a protection against it.* Chances are they’d just have stolen them anyway.
Gas masks would work but aren’t practical and can be stripped off relatively easily, I would think (no idea, though). Something online mentioned “wet bandanna” and “goggles” but bandanas dry out and goggles are no more secure than (I think) gas masks are.
So, what’s the story? Engineers, medical professionals, weapons experts and people who work with capsaicinoids (what do they wear where they make the pepper spray?): this is an idea whose time has come. Let’s see something.
DISCLAIMER: I do not condone violence nor recommend breaking any laws or creating situations in which people could be injured. You are your own person and you control your actions. Think before you act and always try to have empathy. Practice non-violence and be kind to your fellow individuals. Treat others how you would want to be treated.
*The Joker might try to make one, to help shake up the status quo. Bane definitely would have if his other plans had fallen through. Most movies go right to the shooting of the guns, though, however accurate that might be. In Batman Begins Ra’s al Ghul has some pretty handy portable gas masks but they were protecting against poisoned water vapor in the air. Also, that was a movie.