Sunday, December 23, 2018

Legalize It

Nunchucks are back!

Well, they never really went anywhere. But if you happen to live in New York, you are now legally cleared to carry them. New Yorkers are no longer prohibited from possessing the time-honored Okinawan weapons, courtesy of a ruling rendered by a federal judge on December 14, 2018. The story goes that in 1981 a martial arts trainee, Jim M. Maloney, was arrested in New York City following a public demo with the dreaded nunchucks. Unbeknownst to Maloney, nunchucks (or 'chuka sticks') have been banned in New York since 1974. After graduating from law school years later, Maloney began to draft a challenge to the now-decades long New York state ban on nunchucks.

Cops in various municipalities have included nunchaku (Japanese, lit. 'twin sticks') for years as part of their restraining arsenal. A while back I posted about a nunchucks certification program offered for police in California. Nunchucks are currently banned in several states.

Following the kung-fu movie craze of the 70s, nunchucks fever swept the land, with users brutalizing themselves on more than one occasion. I can't blame lawmakers for regarding them as a problem at the time, but times change. With the ban lifted, I don't see an army of nunchaku wielding maniacs tearing up the countryside. It's an interesting ruling in an era of the politicizing of citizens' rights to keep and bear arms of various stripes.

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