Are Taser Guns Torture?

Last week, the United Nations Committee Against Torture ruled that the Taser gun is a form of torture, and "can even provoke death." The group issued the statement in response to news that Portugal has purchased Taser X-26 stun guns for its police force. Basically, the UN thinks that's a bad idea, and a violation of the UN'S Convention against Torture.

Naturally, Taser isn't too happy about this conclusion. The company says the UN group is "out of touch" and questions its contention that there is evidence the stun guns can provoke death. Yet it's not exactly surprising that people are raising questions, since two people died after being jolted by the gun in Canada in the last two months. There's no evidence that the Taser devices actually caused the deaths, but officials are looking into both events.—Gregory Mone