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Beard of Chuck Norris
02-28-2007, 10:12 AM
There is a proposed ban on bladed weapons here in the UK. To sign the petition against this please visit

http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/swords

-sorry if i have broken any rules by posting this.

Peace and love

Jo.

Dazzler
02-28-2007, 10:39 AM
Good.

It won't solve all problems and will have more loopholes than a string vest..but its a step in the right direction.

Peace and Love also.

D

RoyK
02-28-2007, 11:06 AM
I don't understand, poster #1 is against the law and poster #2 is pro the law?

Cyrijl
02-28-2007, 01:33 PM
it is ok to murder as long as you use a blunt instrument

Hogan
02-28-2007, 01:54 PM
You UK guys need a Constitution that protects your weapon rights...

Neil Mick
02-28-2007, 02:10 PM
You UK guys need a Constitution that protects your weapon rights...

A weapon doesn't have rights...:freaky: (you have the right to remain sharp...anything you attempt to cut will be held against you...) :)

Rupert Atkinson
02-28-2007, 02:24 PM
The UK Government is thinking of banning swords completely. If you are British, click on the link and sign the petition against it.

http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/swords/

And spread the word!

Cyrijl
02-28-2007, 02:56 PM
What i think is interesting is the idea that something bladed is a weapon. If you are going to stab someone, then you can just carry a steak knife. Someone who is intent on killing someone probably doesn't care all that much about the aesthetics of the weapon.

Mark Freeman
02-28-2007, 03:21 PM
The UK banned handguns a while ago, removing the enjoyment of many sport shooters. It hasn't stopped the spread of gun crime.
The banning of swords will remove the right of martial artists to own and practice with live blades. Will it stop people killing or maiming with bladed weapons? I doubt it.
Signing the petition will not convince the government one way or the other.

regards,

Mark

happysod
03-01-2007, 03:47 AM
Mark, that's not like your usual optimistic self... Anyway, I've decided to start breeding attack canaries as the bird lobby is large enough to protect my right to carry birds - any mugger trying to take me on is about to get cuttle-fished

Anyone outside the UK puzzled by our governments penchant for banning it's citizens rights to have anything remotely dangerous in should realise that our law makers are actually true visionaries who found it much easier to create new classes of relatively harmless and easily dealt with criminals (i.e. normal citizens) by passing new directives rather than attempting to deal with the rather nasty and dangerous criminals that already exist whi have a dismaying tendency to ignore existing laws and peoples right to life.

This has a threefold benefit of not only showing the media they're "tough on crime" but giving them access to new reasons to target sub-groups "for our own benefit" while increasing the level of fear in the general populace, making them less likely object to further erosion of their liberties in order to feel safe.

Anyone from the UK who feels I'm being overly cynical, ask yourselves whether you and your peer group feel more safe following the various tightening of various gun and knife laws than before they were passed.

Taliesin
03-01-2007, 05:04 AM
To be honest I do believe that 'Blue Labour' - Britains current Tory Government do have the tendnace to pass laws instead of tackling problemes - as a kind of legislative incontinence.

The questions to be asked about this new law are.

1. Do we already have an adequate law to tackle this issue?

According to my, albeit limited, understanding of Britians Criminal Law there is already a criminal offence of possession of an offencive weapon (anything made or adapted for the purposes of causing harm).

2. Are there any other steps that can be taken to address the problem? (eg more frequent police patrols with the purpose of preventing crimes rather than 'a fire-brigade' policing of charging to the scene after an offence has occurred).

3. Are there any potential negative issues? (such as the preception that creating new laws which appear to create more criminals of formely law abiding citizens - I'm not convinced that would be the fact of this new law, but it might well be the preception).

4. What effect would it have - would it substantially or even reasonably minimise the number of people carrying swords (and/or knives).

5. And since we are talking about the UK - maybee we should ne 'tough on the causes of crime' - unfortunaltey that would mean trying to re-establish a concept of community (although that would mean abandoning the cherished Thatcherite philosophy that 'there is no such thing as society', that 'love of money is the root of all virtue' and worst of all of accepting that the purpose of a Government is to ensure the best quality of life possible for it's citizens - rather than the greatest profits of business)

Dazzler
03-01-2007, 06:03 AM
I don't understand, poster #1 is against the law and poster #2 is pro the law?

Thats about the scale of it Roy.

I personally remain unconvinced as to why anyone in general public really needs swords or guns for that matter.

Regulated activity within clubs etc is a different thing perhaps. and I'm pro when it comes to the Police having them.

I'm sure others view it differently and have much stronger opinions than me.

Bring them on and I'll read with interest.

Regards

D

Cyrijl
03-01-2007, 07:47 AM
Yes Daren, but if blades are made illegal you won't have them within clubs because you won't be able to get them to and from the club.

The idea is ridiculous since for a bladed weapon, the line between weapon and tool is almost invisible and relies heavily on intent. This is much different than a gun, which generally serves one purpose. It is pretty hard to cut down a tree with a gun.

Beard of Chuck Norris
03-01-2007, 08:26 AM
I don't own any bladed weapons but i do know of people who frequently practice with them and they are not the people who cause the trouble but will be the people effected if the bill is passed.

I thought i would bring it to the attention of the UK aikido community as i am sure there are a lot of you out there who get much joy from sword practice. Be it in aikido, kendo or iaido kata.

A ban on bladed weapons is not going to solve anything. Criminals do not tend to adhere to laws such as these... kinda why they are criminals.

peace and love

jo

George S. Ledyard
03-01-2007, 08:37 AM
If Britain is anything like the US, the majority of deaths from edged weapons attacks are from domestic kitchen type knives. Then would come improvised weapons like sharpened screw drivers etc.

The number of people stabbed with knives that were actually designed for fighting is very small. We banned switch blades many years ago based on Hollywood's depiction of ganger types even though there were actually almost no real crimes committed with them.

I'd be interested to know what the incidence of injury due to sword violence is in Britain. I'll bet it's another example of legislators solving a non-existent pronlem.

Dazzler
03-01-2007, 08:46 AM
Yes Daren, but if blades are made illegal you won't have them within clubs because you won't be able to get them to and from the club.

The idea is ridiculous since for a bladed weapon, the line between weapon and tool is almost invisible and relies heavily on intent. This is much different than a gun, which generally serves one purpose. It is pretty hard to cut down a tree with a gun.

Doubtless there would be some work around.

I remain unconvinced that anyone really needs to own a real sword but open to persuasion otherwise.

D

Hogan
03-01-2007, 08:58 AM
...I'd be interested to know what the incidence of injury due to sword violence is in Britain. I'll bet it's another example of legislators solving a non-existent pronlem.

I was watching the Prime Minister Question Time the other day, & member of Parliament was asking the PM when was he going to do something about the problem of violence from blades - evidently there are more deaths in the UK from blades than from guns, the member said. He didn't say sword deaths, but nontheless, it doesn't surprise me they will ban them at some point. 5 pounds it'll be baseball bats next....

Dazzler
03-01-2007, 08:59 AM
If Britain is anything like the US, the majority of deaths from edged weapons attacks are from domestic kitchen type knives. Then would come improvised weapons like sharpened screw drivers etc.

The number of people stabbed with knives that were actually designed for fighting is very small. We banned switch blades many years ago based on Hollywood's depiction of ganger types even though there were actually almost no real crimes committed with them.

I'd be interested to know what the incidence of injury due to sword violence is in Britain. I'll bet it's another example of legislators solving a non-existent pronlem.

Hi George

No argument with your comments on domestic implements. Always going to be the case unless we stop eating with knives and forks.

Legislators solving a non existant problem. Well - maybe blowing it out of proportion.

But it does happen....

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2000/feb2000/uk-f01.shtml

If you can see this, its one of a few such cases reported in recent years. I believe we had a similar one in Croydon more recently too if anyone wants to search for murder sword and croydon.

Anyway - I'm sure its a tiny fraction of the murders in the UK...but if it could make a difference then why not?

And so far no one has really come up with a reason that I can see to prevent them living without one.

Respectful regards

D

Dazzler
03-01-2007, 09:33 AM
I was watching the Prime Minister Question Time the other day, & member of Parliament was asking the PM when was he going to do something about the problem of violence from blades - evidently there are more deaths in the UK from blades than from guns, the member said. He didn't say sword deaths, but nontheless, it doesn't surprise me they will ban them at some point. 5 pounds it'll be baseball bats next....

Well John ...since you mention it....with our world famous reputation as a great baseball playing nation to protect ;) ....I wonder if there are any stats available to indicate how many baseball bats sold in the UK are purchased for baseball? I'll match your fiver with one of my own to guess its less than 20 percent :)

Cheers

D

happysod
03-01-2007, 10:32 AM
2. Are there any other steps that can be taken to address the problem? (eg more frequent police patrols with the purpose of preventing crimes rather than 'a fire-brigade' policing of charging to the scene after an offence has occurred).
Now this one rings a biig bell - due to aikido (for which I'll never forgive it fully) I've come into contact with various members of our boys in blue in a rather more social atmosphere than I ever thought I would when younger. One of the more common complaints I've heard at the moment is policing by tabloid where the latest headline grabs the biggest police resources so "incidentals" like community policing and long-term social initiatives are dropped in favour of the latest task force..
And so far no one has really come up with a reason that I can see to prevent them living without one. And you're totally correct if you assume a government has a mandate to legislate against any and all items and activities which may cause it's citizens harm.

However, where do you draw the line? The same group which are in favour of this ban have also mooted the point that martial arts in general should be banned. I can't actually recall a single instance of a trained sword practitioner being involved in any of these very headline grabbing articles and to be honest, if I was wishing to use a sword illegally, give me a piece of sheet metal, some wood, tape and a few hours I can quite easily make something suitable for the purpose.

As David said, there are already the laws to cover illegal use of weapons - all the new laws to date have done is conspired against is the genuine hobbyist or collector.

Finally, with regard to your baseball query, you may be suprised at the sheer number of not only baseball but also softball teams that do exist in the UK. Softball in particular has a growing following as one of the better mixed sports.

Anyway, for sheer ease of use/concealability cf damage provided I'd definitely suggest a rounders bat instead - a truely handy, pocket sized bat which has such a noncy name and reputation that explaining it away is childs play.

Taliesin
03-01-2007, 10:53 AM
Joseph wrote

"The idea is ridiculous since for a bladed weapon, the line between weapon and tool is almost invisible and relies heavily on intent."

Personally I think that for a 'bladed object' the key element is intent. However that can most reasonably inferred througth circumstance, meaning the diffence would not be nearly invisible

After all if i'm carrying a brand new kitchen knife home - all wrapped up in it's packaging, in a carrier bag at 4pm on a week day afternoon. It's reasonable to conclude I'm taking it home.

If I'm carrying the same knife concealled in my jacket at 1pm in the morning in a dark street - there can still be a legal presumption of intent.

So you end up with a situation where circumstances can have greater relevance than the actual object as far as intent is concerned.

I'd also take the point that the key circumstances as to whether the bladed object is intended as a tool or a weapon would be accessability of use.

If my sword is sheathed, and in a carrying case that is closed and it would take me 5 minuetes to get it out - it would be hard to say I'm carrying it as a weapon to attack someone.

So by and large I'd stick with the law we have since it provides for both arrest and discretion rather than introducing a new law covering the same situations. (although I might ammend the punishments and defences)

Mark Freeman
03-01-2007, 12:49 PM
David, you are right in your iterpretation of the law, we have a full explanation posted up in our H.Q dojo, so that we are all aware of it.

The current laws covering offensive weapons are adequate to deal with just about anything that can be construed as a weapon. But this government which has introduced over 3500 new offences since coming into power have 'targets' to reach, and you know how much they are slaves to them!

regards,

Mark
p.s. I want some of Ian's attack canaries as soon as he gets the breeding right. However, I fear that there is a backbencher already drawing up a white paper to restrict my right to own a feathered object!

Dazzler
03-02-2007, 04:33 AM
. However, I fear that there is a backbencher already drawing up a white paper to restrict my right to own a feathered object!

Is it an old fashioned dart Mark? You bad bad man! :grr:

deepsoup
03-02-2007, 05:47 AM
Could someone post a link to details of this proposed ban? There seems to be something going on in the Scottish parliament, but I couldn't find anything at Westminster. (I didn't spend a lot of time looking though.)

The No 10 petitions thingy is new, and there are lots of petitions going on about 'proposals' that don't actually exist. (I'm thinking here of the petition against a ban on photography in public, which isn't likely to make much difference because no one is proposing such a ban).

If its a Scottish parliament thing, petititoning the PM is even more pointless than usual. (Bearing in mind that if you get up to 2 million signatures, the response will be an email explaining that he is listening, no no really he is, but he's still going to ignore you all sorry.)

If you really care about something, its much more effective to write letters to the relevant ministers. A response of as little as 8 individuals' letters is considered 'significant', and the minister has to respond to each one individually. ie: each individual letter a person writes is more likely to have an effect than the whole petition no matter how big it gets.

Just a thought.

BTW:
George Ledyard is of course correct. I'd also like to take this rare opportunity to agree with John Hogan: we do need a written constitution, though the right to bear arms, or arm bears is the very least that we need it to protect.

SmilingNage
03-02-2007, 09:25 AM
Sounds like some politician is just trying to get his name in the paper to show his constituency that he isnt sleeping thru law making sessions. Instead of creating laws or programs to further the economy, this politician decides to get his 15 mins of fame taking on bladed weapons.

If the movie Braveheart didnt spark a massive jump in claymore related hacking deaths, then I think the UK should be safe.

Jim ashby
03-03-2007, 05:30 AM
Here in Coventry we have had a "blade registration scheme" for years. Some jumped up numpty copper (name supplied on request) thought it would be a great idea if you had to give your name and address to any shopkeeper where you bought "any bladed instrument" so the police could "trace weapons". The shopkeeper would keep a register of all knives and bladed instruments that were sold and to whom.
I don't buy anything with an edge in my home town.

Liz Baron
03-05-2007, 04:55 PM
Not been around for a while (long story involving work, mostly), but I thought I'd drop by to pass on some info: The UK Home Office has published a document, available online here (http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/documents/cons-ban-offensive-weapons-0307), with a view to public consultation on the banning of swords. Specifically, the banning of 'samurai' swords, and aimed at the cheap stainless steel weapons widely available online.

Having read the document, there appears to be a distinct inclination to separate these cheap swords from the real Art Swords, so that the legislation has as little impact as possible on martial artists, collectors and suchlike, but if you're in the UK and you think this type of legislation might affect you, perhaps it's worth a little time to read the document and reply.

The consultation is open for replies until May 28th 2007.

Cheers,

Jason Woolley
03-06-2007, 04:05 AM
Coverage on bbc website here (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/6419913.stm).

As mentioned above, the government is making a distinction between cheap replicas, which they do not want easily available, and martial artists and collectors.

"We recognise it is the cheap, easily available samurai swords which are being used in crime and not the genuine, more expensive samurai swords which are of interest to collectors and martial art enthusiasts."

Jim ashby
03-06-2007, 11:19 AM
They said the same about firearms.
They lied.

TeppoLeinonen
03-07-2007, 02:57 AM
You know, the 'Right to Bear Arms' is not quite as universal rule as Americans liek to think. Two countries with American-influenced recent Consitutions come to mind. Japan and Germany, both had their post-WW2 constitution influenced by Americans. Both countries with rather strict restriction on public ownership of weapons.

Neither of which are havens for unrestricted muggers, though.

One good point here with regards to this topic is the japanese sports shooting. Civilian possession of firearms is very limited, I recall even their Olympic shooting tam, or at least their civilian (non-Law Enforcement) members don't get to keep their sports arms at their home. Instead, they are held in the Club, with dedicated ranges.

Now, how would this translate to UK and ban on swords? The swords would be held in lockers at the dojo where applicable. Not at your home or dorm where a drunk college student can grab the piece of steel and hurt someone else with it. Transportation for seminars and visiting classes would be controlled, in a case. But not prohibited.

But this is my (complete outsider's) view of how this could still work if this law passes.

deepsoup
03-07-2007, 04:08 AM
They said the same about firearms.
They lied.

Quite so. They don't specify how they'll define either a martial artist or a 'cheap replica'. Besides, why should one be serious to practice a martial art, is in not permissible to dabble? And what is an affordable iaito anyway, if not a cheap replica?

This is a depressingly stupid proposal. Right at the top of that consultation document they admit that they want to change the law to make it look like they're doing something. What an absurd reason to introduce legislation.

We already have some pretty stringent laws regarding offensive weapons, and a shinken is hardly an easy thing to conceal. They don't seem to consider the option of merely enforcing the perfectly adequate laws we already have.

Swords/knives/bladed weapons aren't like guns. A gun's only use is as a weapon, but there are many, many tools that can serve as an edged weapon.

So let's say they go ahead with an outright ban on "samurai swords" - criminalising a lot of innocent people in the process and wiping out the practice of iaido and a fair chunk of kendo. Lets assume that the handful of criminals and lunatics who've committed crimes with these weapons comply with the law (yeah, right) and get rid of their 'samurai swords' too. It'll still be easy enough to get hold of a sabre, a machete, a felling axe, there is a wide choice of alternative edged weapons. And what then? More legislation, which will have the side-effect of turning gardeners, fencers and lumberjacks into criminals? If someone gets stabbed with a javelin, will a bunch of our athletes have to practice abroad?

Government are supposed to offer a bit of leadership, not merely bow to every bit pressure thats put on them with each new minor moral panic. They find it pretty easy to ignore the wishes of the people when they want to do something like, oh i dunno, wage an illegal war of aggression somewhere. How come they're suddenly the obedient servants of the tabloid press on this issue?

Bah!

Now, how would this translate to UK and ban on swords? The swords would be held in lockers at the dojo where applicable. Not at your home or dorm where a drunk college student can grab the piece of steel and hurt someone else with it. Transportation for seminars and visiting classes would be controlled, in a case. But not prohibited.
That seems like a sensible suggestion. Something like that japanese approach was suggested when the current ban on handguns was being considered, but it was rejected in favour of the current outright ban. Likewise, there's no such suggestion here, only a complete ban making it a criminal offence to own a certain (not very well defined) kind of sword no matter how you store or transport it.

But as I said above, its not like a gun. If your drunk student wants to shoot someone, he has no alternative but to grab a gun. If he's looking for an edged weapon, getting rid of some swords is hardly going to make a difference, he's more likely to have access to a kitchen or a toolshed anyway. So what will come next? A ban on anyone who can't prove they're a professional chef from owning a kitchen knife, a register of professional landscape gardeners who are the only people allowed to own a machete, scythe or axe? How many more people have been killed by a criminal armed with a screwdriver than with a 'samurai sword'?

Maybe we should ban those too. We won't be able to use nails instead of screws, sadly, quite a few people have been killed by criminals armed with claw-hammers over the years.

I say Bah! again.

Sean
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