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Old 10-25-2011, 09:30 PM   #103
Michael Hackett
Dojo: Kenshinkan Dojo (Aikido of North County) Vista, CA
Location: Oceanside, California
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 1,240
Re: Aikido in a street situation

When it comes to using weapons for self defense, there are any number of intangible concerns. Using a knife will have political implications with the police, the prosecution and a jury. Whether true or not, there is a view that a knife is the weapon of choice for thugs and street creeps and one using a knife will quite likely be viewed in that light. A knife is a very personal weapon and to actually incapitate or kill an attacker with a knife is almost an intimate action. How many folks actually have the ability to look their attacker in the eyes as the life drains from them? A firearm is an excellent self defense tool, but requires one to always be armed and in practice to be effective. Always being armed is a pain at best - ask your Berkeley cops about that. And by practice, just going to the range every few months and shooting a few rounds will not make an individual competent. That requires constant work and thousands of rounds fired.

From a more practical standpoint, it would be very wise to research the laws of your jurisdiction to determine the rules and limits to self defense. Generally you must be in imminent fear of death or great bodily injury before you may use deadly force. Your description of your imminent fear will be judged by a reasonable person standard and you could find yourself in deep legal trouble. And yes, I've heard the old saw about it being better to be tried by six than carried by twelve. That has a grain of truth to it - but you must be absolutely sure that you are in danger of being carried by twelve.

I am not adverse to being armed at all. I'm just suggesting that a person must be willing to put in the work and clearly understands the ramifications and consequences that are attached. Just be aware that the decision to use a weapon will forever alter your life and the lives of many, many others. For most people, a canister of pepper spray may be a much better choice. That doesn't always work, but then again, nothing does.

"Leave the gun. Bring the cannoli."
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