Saturday, August 11, 2007

The Target

Click above for a larger view


These targets showed up on a wall of the Paramount Theater (prior to its renovation) and a few other spots in Charlottesville, about 6 years ago. They are the standard targets used in the training of police officers, government agents, etc. Attempts were made to remove them, which were only partially successful.

They are disturbing to see on a gut level. It is a human target. They mean one thing; this is a violent place. Not Charlottesville in particular; everywhere.

They are used to train civilian “peace” officers to use “deadly force.” Pasting them up in public was a surprisingly direct manner of communicating. No comment was necessary. The items themselves spoke volumes.

There has been quite a shift in the way people think and behave in the last ten years or so. We are trying very hard not to see it.

2 comments:

Waldo said...

It's actually been there since at least 1995. I have a picture of it that I took then and, looking back at it, it looked old then.

Ed Deasy said...

Waldo

I have a tendency to underestimate time values, so I'm sure you've got it right. It probably took me several years to pass by there while also carrying the camera. I guess there is no question about the targets durability. I'm also wondering, in case you remember, if they were pasted up anywhere other than the Paramount and beneath the Belmont bridge?