Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Devil or the Deep Blue Sea?

When I posted about the new kerambit, I made a little bet with myself: How long, I wondered, would it take before somebody sent me an email or a note here regarding the advisability of carrying such a nasty-looking thing around?

Less than twenty-four hours, as it turned out:

"Your [sic] nuts. Cut somebody with that and you go to prison for sure."

It is possible. But, attend my reasoning ...

If I have to use my legally-worn kerambit against a life-threatening attack, it'll be because the options are A) use it or B) go RT (that's "room temperature.")

This will mean that two other things will have taken place: 1) I was in a back-to-the-wall situation whereupon I could not flee -- this being my default response to deadly attacks, publicly and privately -- and 2) My gun ran out of bullets and I didn't have time to reload.

Yes, I have discussed the notion of a jury-proof blade -- a Girl Scout pocket knife -- but the truth is, given who I am and what I know, that won't fly. I will be painted, if the grand jury indicts, as a crazed martial artist knife expert praying for a chance to slice somebody. No matter that I have, high, wide, and repeatedly averred and avowed that I'd never use such a weapon unless it was a matter of self-preservation for me or my family. (That I posted about the GSA knife means it would surely come up, and look like an attempt on my part to sneak one past the jury. Listen to the prosecutor: Knife? Shoot, the defendant could kill a room full of black belt SEALS with a pair of fingernail clippers!

Well, yes, that's true. But I'd never do that. I'm against seal hunts.)

If lethal force is justified, then the weapon doesn't matter, long as it is not prohibited, and a sheath knife on the belt in plain sight, no matter how wicked-looking, is legal in these parts. Yes, juries get swayed, but when it gets right down to it, I would rather have the option of convincing them I had no other choice, than having my neighbors interviewed by Channel Six news outside the police-line tape about how shocking it was to have somebody's grampa killed right here in our quiet neighborhood. I used to see him walking his funny-looking little dogs. He would smile and wave. So sad ...

I am a child of the universe; I have a right to be here. Long as you don't try to make me leave, we're gonna get along fine.


Joe said...

Read the Matador series about four times over the past 15 years, read some of your other books too but none as sweet as 97!

I have one question: Where can I get me one of those Girl Scout knives? ;)

Steve Perry said...

Well, the Girl Scout knife you can get wherever Girl Scouts shop.

The Crowner stuff:

Or check out his page on Silat.TV:

jks9199 said...

If lethal force is justified -- it's justified, whether you use your hands, a club/baseball bat/cane, "scary knife" like a kerambit, or a gun.

You'll face the same criminal issues of proving that you were justified -- and the same civil liability challenges.

So carry what you like, stay within the law in how you carry it ('cause it's just freaking stupid to get locked up for something like that), and do all you reasonably can to avoid using any of them.

Dan Gambiera said...

Four useful rules for potentially lethal self defense:

1) Know what you're doing and why you're doing it

2) Don't keep going when there is no more threat

3) Don't stop while there is still a threat

4) Samson slew the Philistines with the jawbone of an ass. Don't do yourself in with the same weapon.

(That includes making a fashion statement like "Driver only carries $20 of ammunition" or having a Death's Head with lightning bolts engraved on your pistol)

Worg said...

When talking to the nice man with the kerambit, it's your nuts you should be worrying about, not his.

Viro said...

Talk to your knife-making friends. Have one of them make a "Hello Kitty" edition kerambit. Pink grip, maybe a cute flower-design for the finger guard.

It'd be just as effective, but when held up by a lawyer, the jury will laugh.

Dave Huss said...

Come on Steve,,, I have just GOT to see the "Hello Kitty" kerambit.

Jason said...

Jiminy christmas.

The mental visual on that "Hello Kitty" kerambit is almost enough to get me back to making knives.

If I had the space I would be back to making knives regardless, so that is not saying much, but still.

All pink micarta and with little Hello Kitty faces on the handle rivets. :D