Law and Order Sword Press

Given the moderately heavy snowfall that fell on my city last night, we’re going to stay with ‘heavy’ and serious topics this today.  From time-to-time, we have to remember that we are involved in a sport involving true weapons – and of a variety of types as well.

Theft of Swords … again.

NORTHAMPTON CHRONICLE & ECHO (UK) 21 February 12  Van filled with history re-enactor’s swords, spears and artefacts stolen from outside Northampton home (Emma Clark)

OK, we’ve discussed this before – we all have valuable, desirable and potentially dangerous kit – please take those extra steps necessary to secure it.  Oh yes, and in case c*** happens, insurance should be a serious consideration.

That aside, I think we all commiserate with the loss, and hope for the early and undamaged return of the van and material.

Carrying Swords

SACRAMENTO PRESS (California) 22 February 12  Is it legal to carry a wooden sword in public in California? (Coral Henning)

Q. Is it legal to carry a wooden sword in public in California? Also in schools?

I fully recognise that this is an American item and that laws differ between countries, provinces, states and cities; but it does illustrate a relevant and important point.  As you’re moving your kit from home to training, from home to a public display, or from the point of purchase anywhere; know the applicable laws and by-laws of your area to prevent problems with local authorities who are obligated to react to (probably) panicked phone calls about the Black Knight walking amok on the street.

And if you want to understand a bit more about the background to civic sensibilities to carrying of swords in public, I invite you to read ‘The week in sword crime’ that the good folks at put together.

>> A number of laws restrict or prohibit carrying concealed weapons, such as cane swords, switchblades, pen knives, and even lipstick case knives, but openly carrying a sword or stick is not expressly prohibited. 

>>  Sacramento’s City Code prohibits carrying “dangerous or deadly weapons” by car, except for “for uses of honest work, trade or business or for the purpose of legitimate sport or recreation.”

Carrying Swords Safely

DAILY BHASKAR (Noida, India) 25 February 12  Groom’s sword kills his friend during puja

Though not WMA specific, it is relevant.  When in public, blade control is critical.  When we’re amongst peers, ‘we’ are very aware of what we’re doing and what we have in hand – the general public?  Not quite so much.

In situations in the public venue, be very aware of your position, your blades path, and the public presence around you!  All sword ‘demonstrations’ with individuals are done by experienced fencers within a well-marked and monitored ‘safe zone’.

And I fully understand the tradition which involves the use of a ‘sharp’ in this public, festive venue – however, our use of sharps has to be held to a different standard.  If not for ethical and professional reasons – for the inevitable law-suit one!