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Rescind the Ban on “Samurai” Swords

Comment 5th July 2010

The recent regulation introduced to outlaw the sale and ownership of 'decorative' Japanese style blades was well intentioned, altho it was a reaction to address a tiny number of actual offences. 

Sadly, for  that segment of the population who practise the martial arts that make use of katana or iaito, the legislation serves mainly to criminalise us, in the eyes of the general public and also makes problematic the legal aquistion of swords with which to train.

At present it is not illegal fo those of us who are members of legitimate martial arts schools to purchase and practise with iaito but, because these blunt training swords appear to be similar, in the wording of the legislation, to those cheap ornaments that the law was crafted to address,  it has become difficult to purchase them.  After all, none of us want to take the risk of an overly enthusiastic customs official deciding that our iaito, which cost several hundred pounds and for which there is often a lengthy waiting period, is an 'illegal' decorative blade.

Why does this matter?

As with any weapon, there are already plentiful regulations and restrictions on what can legally be done with them.  To add a layer of law that does not deter those with nefarious intent but does impinge on the law-abiding is an infringement on our right to take self-responsibility for our actions.

To strip away that fruitless legislation would be a small victory in our recovery as a country from too many years of the Nanny State.

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