A community garden is growing on the back of the building that houses Campus Corner Restaurant at 90 Bridge Street. Once again Outside Art: Plattsburgh Art Project is creating another mural to brighten up Plattsburgh.
After some modification to the original design the nature themed mural outside the Plattsburgh Public Library has been completed after four years. On July 16th at 4 PM the mural will be dedicated to the memory of Jerry Seguin, one of the artists who worked on "Read and Grow: Dream Garden Mural." The dedication will be held on the Brinkerhoff side of PPL where the mural can be seen.
Following the dedication there will be a memorial film about Jerry shown inside the library. Attendees are advised to be prepared to wear masks depending upon the library's policies.
Julius, great nephew of astronaut Michael Anderson, sits in a mini FB-111 jetreproduction during the Plattsburgh July 4th parade. Michael Anderson died in 2003during the disastrous re-entry of space shuttle Columbia. He was born inPlattsburgh and at one time was stationed at the Plattsburgh Air Force Base.The Anderson family visited Plattsburgh to attend the dedication of the mural locatedon Durkee Street depicting the astronaut.
© 2020 Luke T. Bush
PLATTSBURGH CITY, NY – 6/20/21
At first glance the paintings spread across the sidewalk outside 30 City Hall Place are fanciful images for young children. But take a second look and you’ll notice a pattern in two sections. Squares form a hopscotch layout. The long twisty green band is a maze pathway through a school of fish.
There’s also a section with blank white fish, ready for sidewalk chalk artists to fill in with their own details.
Outdoor Art: Plattsburgh Public Art Project created the City-wellness installation through the work of primary artist Les Cosgrove with assistance by Amy Guglielmo.
The Clinton County Health Department provided funding through the Operation Lighter, Quicker, Cheaper grant program. One aim of the program was to add activity stencils to a sidewalk or building so that people can play as they go.
|Blank fish await for details to be added by young sidewalk chalk artists.|
© 2021 Luke T. Bush
PLATTSBURGH CITY, NY – 6/8/21
In a previous article I discussed BolaWrap, a less-lethal/nonlethal device that fires Kevlar lines at a human target. The lines immobilize the target by wrapping around that person, four-pronged barbs holding the lines in place. This device is intended to safely deal with non-compliant people including the mentally ill.
Now if the barbs dig into thick clothing, no problem. But the barbs can also dig into bare flesh. A misfire could mean the lines could wrap around someone's neck instead of the legs.
In a demonstration video there aren’t any problems when someone walks away at a measured pace and is BolaWrapped. But when someone is running they take a hard fall but fortunately in the video the target is on a soft lawn or sandy area. Someone slamming down on pavement might end up with a busted nose or loose a few teeth. Is this the way to treat the mentally ill?
The last segment in the video shows a scene from NCIS: Los Angeles, a fictional TV crime show. BolaWrap also appeared on another CBS police drama, S.W.A.T. Talk about product placement. And with TV production you can do a retake if the line wraps around the fleeing suspect’s neck or he takes a hard fall, breaking his jaw. Save it for the blooper reel.
After stopping the suspect the NCIS agent observes how BolaWrap makes him feel like Batman. Yup, let’s invoke comic book fantasy. Some critics have called BolaWrap the Batman lasso.
Critics have observed that using BolaWrap on a mentally ill person is dehumanizing, treating them like an animal.
Coverage of an incident in Buffalo, NY shows the opposing views on BolaWrap. In what appears to be a news article through GlobeNewsWire there was the successful use of the device when the police were dealing with a woman suffering from a mental health crisis.
"Police say they spoke with the woman for an extended period of time, asking her to get in a police car and receive medical evaluation. The woman refused, which police say prompted them to deploy the Bolawrap.
"The device allowed police to transport her to Erie County Medical Center for evaluation without anyone getting hurt, according to police.”
Note that GlobeNewsWire distributes press releases, not actual news articles that look at all sides of an issue. GNW’s stated purpose is to disseminate press releases to a maximum audience while increasing SEO.
As for a real news article vice.com covered both sides of the controversy. The incident in Buffalo included some extra details.
The BolaWrapped woman was only wearing a t-shirt in freezing temps. A witness told a local news radio station the woman wasn’t given warm clothing or a blanket after she was snared. The witness added that a mental health professional was on the scene but no attempt was made to calm the woman down, deescalating the situation.
Sometimes it’s worth the effort to read a press release to the very end. The GlobeNewsWire has a disclaimer entitled Cautionary Note on Forward-Looking Statements – Safe Harbor Statement. In part this disclaimer tells readers the forward-looking statements can mean risks, the Company’s actual results might be completely different from the Company’s statements. It goes on to cover all bases including “government regulation,” “defects,” “litigation,” and even “outbreaks of disease.”
Ever see such a disclaimer at the bottom of a news article?
© 2021 Luke T. Bush
PLATTSBURGH CITY, NY – 5/25/21
The other day WCAX-TV news showed the demonstration of a new non-lethal / less-lethal restraint for when police are dealing with an uncooperative person.
The demo was held at a local fire department with law-enforcement officials and the city mayor in attendance. The device created by Wrap Technologies is called BolaWrap. It was inspired by a throwing weapon called bola used to entangle fleeing animals. A bola is a combination of connected thin cords (usually three) with weights on each end of the cords. When thrown the bola spins through the air until it makes contact with the target’s legs, wrapping around the legs to immobilize the animal.
BolaWrap is a high tech version of the bola but instead of weights it uses hooks, each one with four prongs, to entangle the target. The lines are made of Kevlar.
In the videotaped demo Mayor Chris Rosenquest is seen standing still and then there’s a flash-bang, the lines wrapping around his pants, hooks holding the lines in place.
But the mayor was standing still, not running. Also noted in a front page article in the Press-Republican (weekend print edition May 22 & 23, 2021) the Wrap Technologies representatives asked the mayor to wear thick sweatpants over his normal clothes. He stated the hooks didn’t hurt. But what if someone is wearing thin pants or shorts? I’m guessing that at the high velocity the BolaWrap is fired (513 feet per second) the hooks would find it easy to penetrate soft flesh. The BolaWrap trainer during the demonstration mentioned that flaw. Also when the person is wrapped and stays still, no problem. But if they try to move the hooks dig in.
During the WCAX news segment a Wrap Technology representative stated that BolaWrap would stop injuries and lawsuits. If there’s a real screw up I can see someone losing an eye. (No lawsuit, huh?)
A photo accompanying the PR article shows the mayor standing with his arms crossed on his chest.
The Washington Post mentioned in an article published last year that at one demonstration a police chief got hooked in one of his hands. He stated: “I had my hands too low and it was my fault.”
According to a Reuters article the electric shock from Tasers killed 49 people in 2018. The search is on for a less deadly device.
It’s commendable that the recent effort for police reform is considering other non-lethal / less-lethal devices to control a noncompliant person. Wrap Technologies says their device can be used to restrain a mental ill person or someone on street drugs.. I can imagine how a severely agitated mentally person or drug user would react when trapped by a BolaWrap. Instead of spending more money on high tech devices governmental entities should use their funds to support mental health services.
“As death toll keeps rising, US. communities start rethinking Taser use” Reuters https://reut.rs/3hSYOya
“NY authorities demo alternative use-of-force tool” WCAX-TV news https://bit.ly/3casRhd
“That's a wrap: Police see demonstration of BolaWrap restraint device” Press-Republican (online version) https://bit.ly/3uif3Y5
By Luke T. Bush
The Press Republican beat out 90 other newspapers in the CNHI, LCC chain for showing the best improvement: https://bit.ly/33oGKTQ
Here’s evidence of how they’ve improved with this item about two people being transported to the hospital: