Debating Essay

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Arming Gardai Most uniformed members of An Garda Síochána do not routinely carry firearms. It was a tradition of the service that standard policing should be carried out by uniformed officers equipped only with a wooden truncheon. Since March 2007, all new Gardaí have been issued with ASP extendable batons, with existing members to be trained in their use as training allows. In addition, the force was equipped with pepper spray during the period 2008–2010.[6][7] A member of the motorcycle unit of the Garda Síochána The force, when originally created, was armed, but the Provisional Government reversed the decision and reconstituted the force as an unarmed police force. This was in contrast to the attitude of the British Dublin Castle administration, which refused appeals from the Royal Irish Constabulary that the force be disarmed.[8] In the words of first Commissioner, Michael Staines, TD: “ The Garda Síochána will succeed not by force of arms or numbers, but on their moral authority as servants of the people. ” According to Tom Garvin such a decision gave the new force a cultural ace: "the taboo on killing unarmed men and women who could not reasonably be seen as spies and informers."[8] Garda Síochána Emergency Response Unit on duty in Dublin Although a primarily unarmed force, certain units of the Gardaí, such as detective units, the regional support units, and the Emergency Response Unit are commissioned to carry firearms. The original stock of Smith & Wesson Model 10 revolvers are in the process of being replaced by the Sig Sauer P226 and Walther P99c semi-automatic pistols. Regional Support Units are equipped with Heckler & Koch MP7 sub-machine guns in addition to issue pistols and non-lethal weapons such as tasers and pepper spray.[9] They serve as a first response to back up regular Garda officers in critical situations due to a rise of

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