September 25, 2009

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Sounds

G20 protesters are complaining that they have come under the attack from LRADs, or Long Range Acoustic Devices. LRADs are capable of directing sound at extremely high decibels, and can be used to project a warning over distances in a focused "sonic beam," or can be used to cause pain through extremely loud sounds. Using LRADs in the latter manner would classify them as a less-than-lethal weapon, though one capable of causing permanent hearing loss.

The Drudge Report has a link this morning, "Video of 'Acoustic Weapons' Deployed on American Soil" that links to the following clip on YouTube.

But do you notice something about the way the "acoustic weapon" is being deployed? If you look at the video, it is clearly not being used as a weapon.

How do we know this?

Because if you watch the video, people cross back and forth in front the LRAD the entire time it is being used, and some even slow down or stop directly in front of it from mere yards away to shoot video, as this guy did.

The LRAD is the large gray disk mounted on the back of the black truck in the left of the frame. Moments before, a pair of young women wandered across the shot to no apparent ill effect, and seconds after, another videographer passed in front of the same device in the foot steps of the first.

I will readily agree that an LRAD can be used as a weapon. But I'd submit this very video as evidence it was not being used that way in Pittsburgh yesterday, at least now when captured on camera.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at September 25, 2009 07:56 AM

Saw a clip on one of the networks last night showing the LRAD in use at the demonstrations, anarchists covering their ears while "shreiking" in pain and running away, meanwhile as you've pointed out others are in the vicinity showing no ill effects. It reminded me of the time Michelle Kosinski decided to go canoeing.

Posted by: wowbagger the infinitely prolonged at September 25, 2009 09:06 AM

Maybe it is like a dog whistle, at a range only the truly insane can hear. Of course, that theory means some of the G-20 protesters are sane so I may have some bugs to work out yet.

Or maybe half of the protesters have ruined their hearing through years of loud music. See? Your mother TOLD you to turn it down.

Posted by: Silhouette at September 25, 2009 10:26 AM

What would be the big deal if it WERE being used as a weapon? It seems like a much friendlier device than a pistol, and all cops 'deploy' those in America.

Posted by: Kevin at September 25, 2009 12:38 PM