Amidst continued nationwide civil unrest and protests, many laws around the country are being altered with respect to police use-of-force, some new laws are raising genuine concerns about their validity and safety.
New York City Council recently passed a bill that prevents law officers from using body-to-body pinning maneuvers that, according to the legal language, restrict blood or air flow to an alleged perpetrator. The Gracie Brother’s speak out on the potentially disastrous effects this can have on society, given that the legal language is ambiguous enough to convict an officer for using something as simple as a knee on belly or a chest-to-chest connection in mount to control a suspect.
The precedent this law sets is of great concern, enough so that the Gracie brothers, who through their Gracie University school host several Gracie Survival Tactics seminars nationwide to train and certify police officers in jiu-jitsu techniques tailor-made for law enforcement, have began having conversations with many departments around the country in an effort to educate sheriff’s and precincts alike about the short-sightedness of this policy.
The brothers discuss that taking away effective hand-to-hand combat maneuvers for officers only advocates for added use of force, as it severely limits the ability for an officer to detain a suspect without the use of a taser or a firearm. While there are many laws being rightfully looked at and changed in the wake of the George Floyd tragedy, this is one that many would argue was done potentially in haste, with little input from experts in de-escalation of force.
Rener and Ryron are not classically known to speak out on policy or political topics in their videos on topics that they are not at liberty to discuss nor claim to be experts in. As police tactics instructors and well-known jiu-jitsu professors themselves, they state an impassioned case for proper tactical control maneuvers to be introduced to law enforcement in an effort to deescalate aggression of officers in the line of duty, particularly during a time where police reform is a major discussion in society.
They claim that the reforms on the docket for New York will only lead to unnecessary loss of life and overreliance on firearms for law enforcement. When properly applied, non-violent body control tactics serve to protect suspects from an escalated situation. Use-of-force is always going to be a part of the job description for police officers, this new bill sets a dangerous blanket precedent for other departments that may be looking at this example as one to follow.
There can be expected to be strong pushback from the jiu-jitsu community for a knee-jerk reaction like this by the New York City Council, the brothers make it no secret that they are intent to strongly lobby against it.
Rener concludes the video stating “the collateral damage of a change like this is going to far outweigh any benefits that it may bring.”
Check out their discussion below: