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The Only Thing That Can Stop a Bad Guy with a Machete Is a Good Guy with a Bean-Bag Shotgun

In another example of weird language choices from public officials, the Aberdeen Police Department circumlocutes around the fact that it shot a machete-wielding nut with bean bags:

On 11-16-23, at 1448 hrs, law enforcement was dispatched to the 500 block of S State St in reference to a male swinging a machete in public. The reporting party relayed to dispatch that the male was swinging the machete towards innocent bystanders. As law enforcement was responding to the area, we were advised that the individual began running to the north and the east. As soon as this information was relayed, it was requested that a number of nearby businesses and school be notified to lock down. They included the Avera St. Lukes Hospital, the Aberdeen YMCA, and Roncalli Elementary School.

As law enforcement searched the area, the individual was located near the intersection of S State St & 4th Ave. Law enforcement gave the individual commands to surrender, he refused and attempted to walk away. An APD officer deployed a less-lethal bean bag shotgun to gain compliance. After multiple deployments, the individual complied and was taken into custody.

The individual was charged with Aggravated Assault, Obstructing Law Enforcement, and Open Container in Public. The individual was taken to an Aberdeen hospital for medical clearance and will be transported to the Brown County Jail [emphasis mine; Aberdeen SD Police Department, press release, 2023.11.16].

Police are direct with offenders on the street; why not be equally direct with the public in the news? “An APD officer stopped the suspect by shooting him several times with a bean-bag shotgun.”

But hey, be careful out there this weekend deploying your more lethal shotguns on pheasants. Try to take down each bird without multiple deployments.

In related weird rhetoric, one local woman comments on the police bean-bagging as a sign that evil is on the march and that everybody needs her religion:

People are asking “What in the world is happening to our Aberdeen?“ Well, evil is alive and well and moving throughout our town. My humble suggestion is this: if you are a believer and a person who believes in the power of God, spend some time each day praying for our city, for God‘s protection for our police department, sheriffs department, and the highway patrol. And pray for the schools, the children and teachers and staff in Aberdeen. Ask God to cover them and protect them [Bobbie Ekanger, comment on Aberdeen PD FB post, 2023.11.16].

That’s not evil on the march; that’s just one dude with an open container getting out of hand. The police didn’t kneel and pray to stop that dude—whom no gods stopped from taking his Miller Lite (or was it Maker’s Mark from Kessler’s?) and machete for a walk in the first place—they broke out the bean bags. And what’s there to pray for, anyway? In Ekanger’s world, Jesus is coming soon, so the end is already in motion, unalterable by any human incantations.

If Jesus is coming, there’s nothing you can do about it. But if a drunk is coming with a machete, you can do plenty about that with a bean-bag shotgun.


  1. sx123 2023-11-17

    Bean bags are evil and a clear sign of end times. i.e. Cornhole tournaments. (Ok, they’re kinda fun, but I don’t want to admit it.)

  2. e platypus onion 2023-11-17

    NRA and police will demand special access to shotguns that vomit bean bag chairs as a deployment for criminals of color.

  3. larry kurtz 2023-11-17

    In South Dakota sobriety checkpoints equal freedom.

  4. DaveFN 2023-11-17

    “Toward and towards are two acceptable ways of spelling the same preposition.
    Toward is the preferred spelling in the United States and Canada.
    Towards is the preferred spelling in the United Kingdom and Australia.”

    Aberdeen being in Scotland, of course.

    Assembly of God churches generally have excellent pianists to get the Spirit moving, tongues and all.

  5. Noem's nemesis 2023-11-17

    While writing on the subject of ludicrous euphemisms, Cory, remember you don’t “take down” pheasants with “deployments,” you “harvest” them.

  6. Arlo Blundt 2023-11-17

    A fella can’t even get hammered and start swinging a machete around anymore without the cops coming and pasting you with non lethal bean bags, then hauling you off to the hoosegow. What happened to all our God given freedoms in South Dakota???

  7. leslie 2023-11-17

    The 2d amend right to (high-capacity) bean-bag your neighbor TRUMPS those other shabby freedoms! Maybe leave it up to the states? Each governor could get an AG opinion. Or a supreme court hypothetical?!

  8. grudznick 2023-11-17

    The rules of bean bag require that players pitch their bags in an underhand motion from the pitcher’s box next to each side of the board. You can’t score points that way. But if the cops want to fire real bullets or rubber ones or bags of stinging rock salt into the bodies of miscreants, that is their right. You don’t want to get watermeloned from a copy catapult, don’t be an ass. Cops should carry spiked bats, and just let them flail. Cops are like your basic school teacher…what they say goes, and if you don’t listen, you go to the principal’s office. Or get kneecapped. Sort you out later.

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