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Don’t Tase Me, Bro! is a catchphrase taken from a video of University of Florida student Andrew Meyer getting tasered by a security personnel after being forcibly removed from an open Q & A session with U.S. Senator John Kerry.
On September 17th, 2007, Senator John Kerry gave a speech at the University of Florida as part of the Constitution Day forum organized by the school’s student government. Nearing the end of the event, undergraduate student Andrew Meyer walked up to the microphone stand and criticized Kerry for repeatedly evading his questions:
“Why don’t you answer my questions, I have been waiting and listening to you speak in circles for the last two hours.”
When he finally got the floor, Mayer asked Kerry about his involvement with the organization known as Skull & Bones. Kerry had admitted to being a member of Yale’s secret society while studying there, but Meyer pushed his argument to the point in which school officials shut off his microphone. Meyer was eventually forced away from the area by police and tasered repeatedly while he screamed, “Don’t tase me, bro!”
A second, shorter upload of the video was put on YouTube the same day, with over 6 million views over the past 4 years. The event was covered by the LAist, Fox News and Wired immediately afterward. A few days later, NPR blogged about the incident and it was added to Urban Dictionary, where it was subsequently featured as the Urban Word of the Day on November 1st, 2007.
Meyer was charged with resisting arrest but it was later dropped in favor of 18 months probation. On October 31st, 2007, Meyer did an interview with the Today Show, where he stated that he did not profit off of the phrase and felt people were “disregarding the seriousness of the situation.” Despite this, neearly three years later in March 2010, the video was named one of the 50 best videos on YouTube by TIME.
In May 2011, Washington Post reported that Meyer was enrolled at law school in Florida after the incident gave him “a taste of the system” and has written a book about his experience.
Search for both “Don’t tase me bro” and Andrew Meyer peaked in September 2007 with a few much smaller peaks in the months following.