How to handle tear-gas and pepper spray

Thankfully, very little of these chemical irritants have been deployed (so far). PhotoDoc at Reddit explains what to do if when they are. The biggest take away you should have: they’re non-lethal uless you’re very young or very old. However, some of you could be blinded by them should you be wearing your contacts. Read PhotoDoc’s explanation after the fold.

Hey guys,

I wanted to offer some support and advice if the police become aggressive, especially if they use tear-gas and oc sprays (pepper spray).

One of the most important things to know about these two are that they’re non-lethal, except for a very minute portion of people. Those being the elderly, sick or very young – they shouldn’t be apart of the protests when things get hairy. If you’re out of shape, a young kid (what are you doing there anyway), or elderly – please let the young people handle the beating. Losing lives among our most vulnerable is counter productive.

Even if you’re standing in a cloud of Tear Gas or OC Sprays, and your lungs are coming out of chest, you can’t see, and you feel like you can’t breathe – you still can. The very concept of non-lethal is to exact pain to make you move and comply. You will feel like absolute SHIT!! BUT YOU CAN SURVIVE IT.


Tear Gas: An over production of mucus and severe pain the chest. Severe coughing. I highly recommend you wear glasses when they do this, because tear gas CAN CAUSE CONTACTS TO FUSE TO YOUR EYES AND MAY PERMANENTLY DAMAGE THEM.

OC Spray: The burning piss of Satan across everything you know

Your first reaction will be to run away. Exactly what the cops want. I DEMAND that you don’t! Rather, link arms with your friends and take the beating. Don’t fight back or get aggressive. This whole image will bolster your legitimacy. It reflects your strength and solidarity.

Further, cops would ABSOLUTELY HATE to handle you if you have OC Spray or Tear Gas on you. That shit rubs off on them and they’ll even get a bit of pain themselves from it. If you stick it out once, they will become reluctant to use it again because they’ll know they’ll have to carry you out.

How to treat those things:

Tear gas: You will have to wait it out in fresh air. AGAIN THOSE WITH CONTACTS ABSOLUTELY NEED TO NOT WEAR THEM – get your glasses! It will be a bad day for your vision for the rest of your life. Also, avoid everything you can do to rub your eyes because the crystals may damage your eyes.

OC Spray: Fresh running water and baby soap. This will relieve the pain by a significant amount. The logistics may be difficult, but I would recommend ‘OC Spray Teams’ of people with gallons and gallons of water and baby soap washing peoples eyes and faces out.

Remember, your legitimacy derives from being peaceful. There are plenty of cops out there who empathize with you; don’t make enemies of them. They are not and were never your enemies. They are only the buffer for what’s considered peace. Your opponent is the Corporations who steal money from everyday citizens.


In Basic Training, we were subjected to Tear Gas chambers where we had to stay in an enclosed environment for something like 2 minutes breathing that wonderful stuff in. It was not pleasant, but stands to testify that you can live through it.

Also, I worked in a detainment camp where we used it during Riots, and that stuff out in the open is a whole lot more potent. Again, still survivable.

As far as OC Spray goes, the main thing is to channel the pain. During non-lethal training, I saw large and tall soldiers come down like babies. I’ve also seen little women take it in stride. Its all mental.

Having said its all mental, make it mental with your friends and fellow protesters. Link arms and show solidarity!