Brassed Off Britannia

Brassed Off Britannia

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 Post subject: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 12:31 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:56 pm
Posts: 9404
Location: Lake District, England
I'm all for keeping knives out of the hands of street gangsters but as so often the law goes right over the top. I carry a sheath knife about the home, garden and workshop because it's useful for rope and other cutting. My little Swiss Army knife just doesn't have it while the heftier 3" Ruhr steel blade will cut anything. But I have to remember to take it out of the sheath and drop it on my desk if ever I go out because despite my advancing age and lack of a record for stabbing people the law would bang me up or fine me for carrying it. So when did the law stop judging the circumstances and start assuming that everyone is criminal? I can carry my oak walking stick but not a baseball bat, yet if faced with a violent confrontation I'd choose the stick. A WPC once took me to task for the wooden club hanging by the door when a few yards away in the log bay I have two axes easily to hand, not to mention a workshop full of deadly tools if causing death were the choice. Then there's the kitchen draw positively stuffed with armaments. And don't even think about the car boot with it's wheel brace, spanners and screwdrivers. Hasn't it all become a bit irrational?


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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2018 5:17 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 03, 2010 2:35 am
Posts: 5976
Location: Fleurieu, South Australia
Cumberland Cockney wrote:
Hasn't it all become a bit irrational?

Yes: long ago. When I can't carry nail clippers on an aircraft, I'm inclined to do a web search on how they can inflict lethal injury. Yet, I can wrestle a champagne bottle off a hostie and brain anyone with the thick-walled glass container.
A folding knife may be carried here if a realistic use can be stated for it. A mate works with horses most days and he carries one all the time.
Bowie knives in night clubs are a different matter. It seems that stabbings are commonplace in UK, based on the "24 hrs in Emergency" TV show.
A Bowie knife in the bedside drawer is another matter, as is the mattock handle in the corner of the garage doorway, off the hall. I never know when I might need to dispatch a spider or mouse.

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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:29 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:56 pm
Posts: 9404
Location: Lake District, England
I think I mentioned elsewhere that I was once ticked off by a WPC for having a 2 foot wooden club hanging just inside the door when the proper way to deal with an intruder is to phone 999 and await the arrival of the fuzz. Then, the other day, there was a report in the paper that the police, being undermanned, are not answering 999 calls for several hour and sometimes several days, and in any case our nearest police station is 25 miles away. It appears that under the law I, a pensioner, am allowed to defend myself as long as I don't use a weapon. Mad, innit?


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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:43 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 03, 2010 2:35 am
Posts: 5976
Location: Fleurieu, South Australia
Cumberland Cockney wrote:
It appears that under the law I, a pensioner, am allowed to defend myself as long as I don't use a weapon. Mad, innit?

I disagree. You are allowed to use "reasonable force" sufficient to exceed the nature of the threat, even a "weapon".
The definition of weapon is determined by case law - precedent - and may include a host of "unweapons".
A chef's knife is not a weapon but may be used in reasonable self defence or in the defence of another victim.

We had a case some years ago when a senior citizen and long-term member of a gun club arrived home and was followed by a burglar who attempted to rob him, using a knife. The old boy shot him dead. There was an investigation but no charges were laid.
All he needs establish is that he held a reasonable fear of serious/major injury or life threat.
For the next class, we will examine "reasonable"; it's probably not what you might think.

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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 7:43 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:56 pm
Posts: 9404
Location: Lake District, England
But I return to my police warning about keeping a club by the door. I see your point, but does that allow me to keep a potential weapon (though not an actual one) available? If so can I transfer the axe from the shed to the hallway and would the WPC have been happier with that? After all, I have to store the axe somewhere, so why not by the door which gives me access to the woodpile? I could even argue that this would be a more secure location.

There has been much argument here that 'reasonable force' contains no specifics, thus leaving it to the police and the courts to make a judgement. There have been many cases of householders arrested and detained for hurting burglars then spending a few years awaiting a judgement, usually held on a charge of assault or even murder.


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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2018 7:16 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 03, 2010 2:35 am
Posts: 5976
Location: Fleurieu, South Australia
Cumberland Cockney wrote:
There has been much argument here that 'reasonable force' contains no specifics, thus leaving it to the police and the courts to make a judgement.

There is abundant case law (precedents) that demonstrates appropriate tests of a fair thing.
When I received threats from a group of 20-odds after I reported one for loutish behaviour in a public street, as they wandered about outside a deli with bottles of beer in hand. One schoolgirl had an uninvited hand up her skirt that I reported.
We lived 10 miles out of town on a country road where police support would have been ten minutes away. A group of louts can do plenty of damage in ten minutes. My local senior constable's counsel was that, if they broke in my front door while my wife and baby were there, nothing was "off limits".
I didn't mind caring for my brother's Ruger carbine for the next month. Happily - for all of us - nothing came of it.

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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2018 7:46 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:56 pm
Posts: 9404
Location: Lake District, England
We had a case recently of a rape accusation against a student. Evidence that the girl lied was available at the time, retained by the police and not revealed to the defence until the day in court. The charges were then withdrawn and the student's name was cleared - after two years awaiting the case during which he was barred from the university, lost his friends, had his life wrecked. Similarly with home defence cases where the police almost always bring a charge of assault, or murder, just in case and leave it to the courts to sort out a few years down the line after the accused has lost his job, suffered severe stress, his children tormented at school and his life ruined. Can it really be said that he got justice in the end?


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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:30 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 03, 2010 2:35 am
Posts: 5976
Location: Fleurieu, South Australia
It sounds like a case of a colleague in a large regional town who was accused of molestation by a 14-year-old lad. The teacher was immediately posted to district office while the investigation continued, lest he repeat his behaviour with someone else.
After several months, the case was due to come before the court at which time the lad withdrew his claim and the matter was dismissed. By this time, the entire town knew of the man's reputation and he was thus placed in a city/suburban centre to take up his career anew. Thankfully, he survived the experience but the system requires that the care of the child is paramount and the effect is the professional is assumed guilty until proven innocent. No one warns you of this when you take up such a career.

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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:13 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 3:56 pm
Posts: 1240
Back to the subject which is hard to make a joke about. Yesterday the 29th victim died due to a stabbing, 14 deaths in London alone. Is it a cultural thing or just a sign of the times?


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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2018 3:53 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:56 pm
Posts: 9404
Location: Lake District, England
Is that a big number? Horrible, of course, but I read somewhere that last year in this country we had the lowest murder rate since 1983. There have always been yob gangs with knives killing each other and always will be but while there exists a mentality that will throw acid in someone's face just to steal their mobile phone it's a sickness the world just has to live with.


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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2018 5:45 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 3:56 pm
Posts: 1240
Quote:
Is that a big number?

Not really, they were mostly kids anyway so it shouldn't be taken too seriously unless you're a parent of one of 'em.


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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2018 7:01 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:56 pm
Posts: 9404
Location: Lake District, England
Now steady on, I wasn't trying to belittle the deaths of 19 people, just suggesting that it's probably about normal for this sick society and doesn't necessarily suggest a new or increasing problem.


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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Sat Mar 31, 2018 6:55 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 03, 2010 2:35 am
Posts: 5976
Location: Fleurieu, South Australia
Cumberland Cockney wrote:
....it's probably about normal for this sick society and doesn't necessarily suggest a new or increasing problem.

How about the number of "non-life-threatening injuries" that don't feature? With modern A&E doing such a good job, plenty of victims are making it home rather than the grave. How do those stats compare?

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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Sat Mar 31, 2018 7:52 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:56 pm
Posts: 9404
Location: Lake District, England
About 38,000 in the UK, 13,000 in London last year and yes, a bit up on the previous year apparently. My earlier point is that although that is a problem for others, especially families and friends, it is not a problem for callous old me and my level of care is hardly more than a passing thought as I read the news, quickly moving on to something else. Were I the parent of one of this year's 19 London victims of course I would care deeply, but I'm not and have to ask how much anyone else really cares about the 16 shot dead Palestinians on the Israel/Gaza border yesterday, or any of the other hundreds of thousands of victims of violent death through murder or natural disaster throughout the world. "Our thoughts and prayers are with..." begins almost every spokesman, policeman or politician, to get his mandatory virtue signalling in first before giving the details and walking away to give it hardly another thought. The nation doesn't grieve for the victims of the Manchester terror attack or the US school massacre, the people note the news and get on with their lives, their own problems and private tragedies.

Is that callous? Of course it isn't, it's the only way people can possibly cope with a world of horror that a few centuries ago would have been news delivered by mounted dispatch rider from the port after a three week or three month journey by sea, a piece of history done and dusted, but now almost filmed as it happens and broadcast to every home in the land. It's now far more than the human mind can deal with so we quite properly shut it out.


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 Post subject: Re: Knife paranoia
PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:28 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 03, 2010 2:35 am
Posts: 5976
Location: Fleurieu, South Australia
Interesting one this morning: over the last 12 years, UK has reduced its police force by 26 000 officers. That has to make it easier for the thugs.
And how many warranted officers are busy watching CCTV rather than acting as a visible deterrent?

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