Regulating Rubber Bullets
By: Elizabeth Arias
According to The New York Times, at least 50 people have been seriously injured or, in some cases, killed by the permitted use of rubber bullets because they were considered to be “non-lethal” weapons since 2000.
Medical experts from varying universities have concluded that the impact of a rubber bullet can rupture vital nerves, blood vessels, and organs including eyes or ear drums for life.
In response, the Metea Valley delegate Pinakin Kale proposed a bill to stop the use of rubber bullets by local law enforcements, limiting their use to the national guard.
Bill S-G-03 would fine any law enforcement agency with the possession of rubber bullets a fee of 1.2 million dollars and would suspend State aid.
The bill proposes the implementation of a one percent tax increase on footwear, supported by the Secretary of State.
Kale, the bill’s Senate Sponsor states, “The main issue isn’t just in Illinois but the nation as a whole, rubber bullets have a high lethality rate when compared to other forms of crowd control and are simply not safe.”
The goal is to delegitimize the use of rubber bullets by any law enforcement agency regulated by the State of Illinois, municipalities within the State of Illinois, the offices of the State’s Attorneys, the Office of the Attorney General, and local governments within the state besides the national guard.
Kale believes that doing so will ensure civil liberties and provide a safer environment for people who decide to peacefully protest.
Update: On March 20, 2021 the bill failed to pass in the Grey Senate.