Value of the combat cane

jks9199

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Nothing wrong with carrying a cane as an affectation -- or in case of momentary loss of balance. Call it intermittent relapsing vertigo if you must...

But Gentlemen have been known to carry canes.
 

jks9199

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I'll stipulate that my comments were only as regards self defense. If you're the aggressor, you probably deserve whatever punishment the law provides.
Now that I'm not on a phone, let me expand.

Self defense is an affirmative defense, a claim that you did indeed break the law -- but you had a damn good reason. To wit, the other guy was trying to do you harm, and your actions were reasonable and necessary to prevent that. Let's take outright assault off the table, as we are all gentlefolk here and would never consider committing an unjustified assault.

At that point, why you had the cane is immaterial -- unless it somehow goes to show that you created a condition that caused the assault. The only thing that will matter is whether or not the judge or jury (if it gets that far...) finds that your use of the cane was reasonable and appropriate to protect yourself.
 

TSDTexan

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Now that I'm not on a phone, let me expand.

Self defense is an affirmative defense, a claim that you did indeed break the law -- but you had a damn good reason. To wit, the other guy was trying to do you harm, and your actions were reasonable and necessary to prevent that. Let's take outright assault off the table, as we are all gentlefolk here and would never consider committing an unjustified assault.

At that point, why you had the cane is immaterial -- unless it somehow goes to show that you created a condition that caused the assault. The only thing that will matter is whether or not the judge or jury (if it gets that far...) finds that your use of the cane was reasonable and appropriate to protect yourself.


I find that by training in cane defense as a 40 year old, it will give me 20 years of practice, by the time I hit retirement age.

In that span of time, I will have fully internalized my cane art, and it will be autonomic or thoughtlessly biological.

By the time I hit 80... That would be four decades of practice.
If I inadvertently kill my attacker at the ripe old age of 80, that's OK.

I could probably use a relaxing time in some old state penn.
because I certainly dont expect social security to be there for me and would probably be working until the day that I die otherwise.
 
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crazydiamond

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As someone who trains partially in FMA (in the united states) I am surprised how easy it is to get a concealed gun permit, but under no way, shape, background check, certification, or legal method, am I allowed to carry a less lethal blunt striking instrument .

Officer "Hey citizen, nice gun you got there! ...Wait is that a collapsible baton? On the floor scum bag!"o_O

but back to the specific issue, I like having FMA in my training, because at sometime in the future I could need a cane, and I would be ready to continue to train or defend myself.:)
 
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lklawson

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My criticism is that it's only practical for a person who would normally be carrying a cane, I.e. An aging person or someone with a disability.
Never, ever, even once been a problem for me. I carry a cane every day.

I think an able bodied person wielding a cane can draw unnessessary attention
You'd think so but you'd be wrong.

and if you should ever use that cane in an altercation you'd better be damn sure it's an open and shut case of self defense, which is rarely the case.
Sheesh, that goes for ANY weapon or self defense action! Don't act in self defense unless it's actually self defense. That's pretty much the rule.

Benefits of carrying a cane are that you can legally carry them anywhere. A business is not likely to tell you not to use a cane even if you appear able bodied for fear of lawsuits.
Turns out that people are too oblivious to notice and those that do either think it's cool or don't give a crap.

That isn't really my concern. What I'm concerned about is after you actually use a cane and end up in court. If you're able bodied you'll probably have to justify why you had a cane to begin with, this may not be a crime but I think it can hurt your defense.
Just make sure your use of Deadly Force is justified. It's really pretty simple.

Some might make the "better tried by 12 thsn carried by 6" argument. Personally I hate that cliche, in limited contexts it makes sense but it's not justification for ignorance of the law. Also, I have LEO friends who advise against seemingly innocuous "tactical" weapons like flashlights and pens. Law enforcement still recognizes that these items are weapons and while they aren't illegal they can cause a cop to be suspicious of your intentions.
A weapon is a weapon. You carry inconspicuous ones so that the sheeple don't flip out.

My problem with products such as the Cane-Masters "Combat Cane" is that they're over priced for what they are. Just go to the Farm & Fleet store and buy a hickory Stock Cane. Simple and cheap.

So to recap, I like the combat cane stuff I've seen. It makes sense for me to train and learn it now so that I may use it one day when It is more socially appropriate for me to carry a cane. But I'm not sure it's the best idea for an able bodied person to walk around with a cane. What do you guys think? I'm only raising the issue because I've seen a few combat cane guys promoting it lately.
You're over-thinking it. Just carry what you can legally carry. If you want to make sure you don't scare the sheeple, then keep it hidden or carry something that appears innocuous to the untrained eye. After that, just adhere to the 4 Pillars of Justifiable Deadly Force.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
 

lklawson

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Good points, I can see the value of a cane representing an improvised weapon, much like the stick is in Filipino arts. Outside of that I'm still not sure. At home, I'd rather use a gun. In the car, you'll still possibly have to explain why the cane was there if you use it.
Nope. It's not a problem. On the rare occasion that people ask, it's almost always someone who already knows me and I just tell them, "I'm pretentious" or "I like it." Never been a problem.

As far as Law Enforcement goes, they don't care. I went in to the local PD/Court center and through the metal detectors. The LEO working the gate asked me to run my cane through the X-Ray and asked if I needed help standing. "No, thank you," I replied. He looked at me again, knew I didn't need it for an ambulatory aid, then looked really bored. He put my pocket knife in a property box for me to claim after I was done and leaving and I kept my cane. Why? Because the rules said he has to let me "check" the knife with him.

It's not a problem. Honest.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
 
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lklawson

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2 - If you're in a courtroom in the US, the other side has to prove that you do NOT have a trick knee - which is impossible. You don't have to prove anything.
Not even that. The other side has to prove that you weren't justified in using it as a weapon.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
 

lklawson

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Depends on the charge... Aggravated assault isn't influenced by whether you carry a cane as an affectation or as a medical necessity. Remember that self defense is a defense of justification. ..
THIS!!!

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
 
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Mephisto

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Now that I'm not on a phone, let me expand.

Self defense is an affirmative defense, a claim that you did indeed break the law -- but you had a damn good reason. To wit, the other guy was trying to do you harm, and your actions were reasonable and necessary to prevent that. Let's take outright assault off the table, as we are all gentlefolk here and would never consider committing an unjustified assault.

At that point, why you had the cane is immaterial -- unless it somehow goes to show that you created a condition that caused the assault. The only thing that will matter is whether or not the judge or jury (if it gets that far...) finds that your use of the cane was reasonable and appropriate to protect yourself.

The "somehow goes to show that you created a condition that caused the assauly" is where my cause for concern arises, but like you said that's a concern regardless of the weapon you use. People who get into disputes that lead to violence often think they're acting in the right, if it's an open and shut case there's no cause for concern but it's the gray area where trouble can arise. Somehow what seems like a common sense call to you and everyone else results in a good guy getting in trouble or a bad guy walking free. But if you clearly and decisively act within the law you're probably okay, I just don't think its always so simple.
 
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Mephisto

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Never, ever, even once been a problem for me. I carry a cane every day.

You'd think so but you'd be wrong.

Sheesh, that goes for ANY weapon or self defense action! Don't act in self defense unless it's actually self defense. That's pretty much the rule.

Turns out that people are too oblivious to notice and those that do either think it's cool or don't give a crap.

Just make sure your use of Deadly Force is justified. It's really pretty simple.

A weapon is a weapon. You carry inconspicuous ones so that the sheeple don't flip out.

My problem with products such as the Cane-Masters "Combat Cane" is that they're over priced for what they are. Just go to the Farm & Fleet store and buy a hickory Stock Cane. Simple and cheap.

You're over-thinking it. Just carry what you can legally carry. If you want to make sure you don't scare the sheeple, then keep it hidden or carry something that appears innocuous to the untrained eye. After that, just adhere to the 4 Pillars of Justifiable Deadly Force.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
I'm glad carrying a cane hasn't been a problem for you. This thread isn't really about any one specific person. I don't know you or how you look. My concern is that a young able bodied guy who ends up cracking someone over the head with a cane might be subject to scrutiny for having a cane. If you're an aging guy in his 40s who's not in super great shape you're gonna be viewed differently than a mid twenties/early 30 year old athletic guy. It would be like using an ax handle/chain/baseball bat on someone, you're gonna have to explain where you got the weapon, and in court they may just paint you as a trouble maker. This is easier to do in court on a younger social guy out and about with friends than it is for a 40 something or older home body.

Like I mentioned though, I talked to my lawyer friend and it may not be a big concern. You just have to convince a jury you sometimes need the cane and it was a weapon of opportunity.
 

lklawson

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I'm glad carrying a cane hasn't been a problem for you. This thread isn't really about any one specific person.
You're missing the point. The point is, how old you are doesn't matter.

I don't know you or how you look.
<- That's my picture.

My concern is that a young able bodied guy who ends up cracking someone over the head with a cane might be subject to scrutiny for having a cane.
And I'm telling you that you're concern is unfounded. When you crack someone over the head with a cane, what matters is whether or not you were JUSTIFIED in doing so, not whether or not you need a cane to walk.

If you're an aging guy in his 40s who's not in super great shape you're gonna be viewed differently than a mid twenties/early 30 year old athletic guy.
Actually, no. Turns out that's irrelevant.

It would be like using an ax handle/chain/baseball bat on someone, you're gonna have to explain where you got the weapon
No you're NOT. You're going to have to explain WHY YOU USED IT AS A WEAPON. Where you got it and why you had it is only relevant if your explanation for why you used it is not believable because it sounds like you were starting a fight. If it's clear that you used the cane for self defense, then that's all that matters.

and in court they may just paint you as a trouble maker. This is easier to do in court on a younger social guy out and about with friends than it is for a 40 something or older home body.
I've been carrying canes for 15 or 20 years, since my 30's or so. I don't limp (unless I'm injured). And I've known guys who were younger than me to do the same. It's, honestly, not a problem.

Like I mentioned though, I talked to my lawyer friend and it may not be a big concern. You just have to convince a jury you sometimes need the cane and it was a weapon of opportunity.
You don't even need to do that. You only have to convince the DA/Prosecutor that you were justified in your use of the cane as a weapon. End of story. The only time it matters past that is if there is enough of a question of the justifiability of the use of a cane as a weapon that it might go to a Grand Jury and thence on.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
 

lklawson

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The "somehow goes to show that you created a condition that caused the assauly" is where my cause for concern arises, but like you said that's a concern regardless of the weapon you use. People who get into disputes that lead to violence often think they're acting in the right, if it's an open and shut case there's no cause for concern but it's the gray area where trouble can arise. Somehow what seems like a common sense call to you and everyone else results in a good guy getting in trouble or a bad guy walking free. But if you clearly and decisively act within the law you're probably okay, I just don't think its always so simple.
No it isn't. It's perfectly darn simple. Just follow the 4 Pillars of Justifiable Deadly Force. That's ALL. The people who get into trouble for doing what they thought was reasonable have almost always violated one of those rules or appear to have.

It's this simple. If it's legal for you to carry a cane then IT'S LEGAL FOR YOU TO CARRY A CANE.

You're over-thinking this.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
 
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Mephisto

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No it isn't. It's perfectly darn simple. Just follow the 4 Pillars of Justifiable Deadly Force. That's ALL. The people who get into trouble for doing what they thought was reasonable have almost always violated one of those rules or appear to have.

It's this simple. If it's legal for you to carry a cane then IT'S LEGAL FOR YOU TO CARRY A CANE.

You're over-thinking this.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
Sorry but you're wrong things aren't that simple. You are not a lawyer are you? I don't care about the 4 pillars, I'm not interested. If you carry a cane fine, go ahead.

I talked to my lawyer friend "Matt Murdock" again he expanded on the topic:

"not to get all legal on you but b/c i hate seeing all the wanna-be lawyers on martial talk --> Yes self defense is an affirmative defense. At the same time, in many jurisdictions, you lose the defense if you initiated the confrontation or escalated from non-deadly to deadly force. The criminal justice system is more nuanced than people often understand and the decisions of police/prosecutors/judges/juries are often based on their general feeling or reaction. It would end best for a person involved in an altercation where a cane was used if the responding officer believes that the use of force was justified and declines to pursue the issue further. I think that this result is more likely if you have a good reason for having a cane as opposed to no reason at all (I feel like it) or worse yet (I carry it for self defense)"

After further back and forth Murdock said this:

" everyone thinks that the cop is just going to take them down town and they are going to raise the "self defense" claim and they are going to get let go. If that was the case then they would never charge anyone because everyone knows to say that.

if they don't buy your defense then they will charge you and let the jury sort it out, and if the judge doesn't buy it then the judge can take self defense off the table and you have to rely on a jury nullification... not something i would bet my life on.

Again self defense is nuanced in itself and is not the same in every jurisdiction
there are hundreds of cases in every state that have developed an interpretation of what each states statutory self defense statute means."
 

Chrisoro

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Fair enough, I'm coming from a frame of reference from someone in the U.S. Still, you can't carry a gun everywhere over here. Or a knife for that matter. I can understand that with knee surgeries you could justify carrying a cane. You as an individual are clearly not the person I'm referring to in this thread. I talking about a healthy young man walking around with a cane, or perhaps even driving with one in his car. Im 31, if something goes down and I crack a guy over the head with a cane I might just have some explaining to do.

The only explaining you would want to do, is to tell that the reason you had the cane right there at that moment, was that you have a knee that sometimes gives you trouble, and having a cane available for those situations is very helpfull. Then you can explain that having the cane close buy at the time, made it the obious choice for use in a justified self-defence situation, even though that is not why you had it with you at the time.

I'm not that much older than you. I'm 36. The knee surgeries was done in my late teens, one of a result of Taekwondo training and the other from when I served in the RNAF. Also, I don't walk around with the cane, but I do have one in my car, as well as one near the door in my home. I'm not talking about walking around with it on a regular basis. At least not in the near future, hopefully. :)
 
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geezer

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Sorry but ...things aren't that simple.

...self defense is nuanced in itself and is not the same in every jurisdiction ...there are hundreds of cases in every state that have developed an interpretation of what each states statutory self defense statute means."

Kirk is an invaluable addition to this forum, and a "go-to" guy for all kinds of information especially regarding weapons. And, I found his "4 Pillars" link to be very informative. Nevertheless, regarding this matter, I have to agree with you, Mephisto.

I have an old MA acquaintance who was a cop for many years before becoming a prosecutor. When discussing this same issue he stressed the "nuances" and importance of appearances. Claims of self defense often pivot on determining intent. These often highly subjective determinations could be made by the arresting officer(s), a prosecutor, a judge, or a jury, ...depending upon how far the process goes. And as a successful prosecutor, although not a very ethical individual, my former acquaintance could do a lot with appearances to get a conviction.

Another point he mentioned was that whether or not it is legal to carry many common objects often depends on perceived intent as well. In some jurisdictions something like a piece of ordinary sporting equipment, such as a baseball bat or golf club, becomes illegal if it is being carried with intent to cause harm, etc. rather than for its intended sporting purposes. Such determinations of intent could equally be applied to a cane, or any other object, especially if advertised and marketed for "tactical" purposes.

Personally, I admit having no formal knowledge of the legal system and its workings, but I have had enough life experience to know that things don't always work out as simply as Kirk seems to suggest. So, Mephisto, like you I would always prefer to take nothing for granted, even my "legal rights" and err on the side of caution.

That said, carrying a simple cane ...not a tactical" model or massive, brass-ball headed skull-crusher, but a plain-Jane crooked cane is probably a good, cautious choice for self-defense.


Oh, one afterthought. Do make sure it's a stout cane made of good, resilient hardwood. Once in my youth I got into a brawl while I was still in a walking cast and carrying a cane. Pretty stupid. Even more stupid, I busted my cheap cane into three short pieces across the back of a much larger individual who was not hampered by a cast on his leg. If my brother hadn't saved my butt, things would not have ended well. True story.
 
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jks9199

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The "somehow goes to show that you created a condition that caused the assauly" is where my cause for concern arises, but like you said that's a concern regardless of the weapon you use. People who get into disputes that lead to violence often think they're acting in the right, if it's an open and shut case there's no cause for concern but it's the gray area where trouble can arise. Somehow what seems like a common sense call to you and everyone else results in a good guy getting in trouble or a bad guy walking free. But if you clearly and decisively act within the law you're probably okay, I just don't think its always so simple.

Simple, no. Common sense? Yes. This is really moving off the topic, so I'm going to stick with what would lead to a situation where carrying a cane might be an evidence of seeking violence, rather than either preparation or simply an affectation. What might shift that perception? Conduct, of course... if you're seeking offense and causing trouble, than your "walking stick" is suddenly looking a lot less harmless. But it can be less obvious. If you're walking around with your cane, faking a limp, with $100 bills falling out of your pocket? Yeah, you're probably going to be seen as seeking trouble. The truth is most of us would be in the middle. So it'd likely turn on the specifics of the encounter.
 

jks9199

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Not even that. The other side has to prove that you weren't justified in using it as a weapon.

Peace favor your sword,
Kirk
Not exactly... Or it depends on what sort of court. If you find yourself charged with assault, and you assert that you were justified in defending yourself, you've moved the burden of proof into your lap. You've openly admitted that you did indeed strike/smash/hurt/whatever the other guy, contrary to laws which say you ain't supposed to do that sort of thing... BUT you had a damned good reason -- namely that he either intended or was in the act of doing unto you first/worse, and you acted to stop it.

In a civil court? I can't say with certainty, not being a lawyer, but I suspect it would come down to a very similar argument.
 

jks9199

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I'm glad carrying a cane hasn't been a problem for you. This thread isn't really about any one specific person. I don't know you or how you look. My concern is that a young able bodied guy who ends up cracking someone over the head with a cane might be subject to scrutiny for having a cane. If you're an aging guy in his 40s who's not in super great shape you're gonna be viewed differently than a mid twenties/early 30 year old athletic guy. It would be like using an ax handle/chain/baseball bat on someone, you're gonna have to explain where you got the weapon, and in court they may just paint you as a trouble maker. This is easier to do in court on a younger social guy out and about with friends than it is for a 40 something or older home body.

Like I mentioned though, I talked to my lawyer friend and it may not be a big concern. You just have to convince a jury you sometimes need the cane and it was a weapon of opportunity.
It would be looked at no differently than any other way a person used force: did they have a legal justification for the force they used. Hit someone in the head with a cane, and kill them; it doesn't matter whether you're an 85 year old relying on a cane for balance or a 20 year old MMA fighter. Did you have legal justification for the force you used? If it was sufficient for lethal force, than you were OK. The age, infirmity, etc go into the assessment of reasonableness -- but not whether you needed the cane for walking.
 

jks9199

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OK... What's a cop going to think about you carrying a cane without an apparent disability? Speaking as one... Depends. You're in gang colors, walking with 3 other gang members, towards a group of members of another gang? You're up to no good. Opposite end of the scale, you're out walking about and have a cane, and get attacked, and use it to protect yourself? Well, unless you were hunting for trouble (see my post above)... Kind of fortunate. Just like someone with a legally carried concealed gun... or openly carried gun, for that matter.
 

lklawson

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Sorry but you're wrong things aren't that simple.
Actually, yeah, it really is that simple. The fact that you don't like the truth doesn't change it.

You are not a lawyer are you?
I'm as much a lawyer as you apparently are. So where do I get my information? From similar sources to what you're claiming you do: actual lawyers and law-makers. The difference is that 1) I didn't start with a preconceived notion and then try to make facts fit what I wanted to hear 2) the legal experts I reference specialize in this sort of thing 3) I paid attention to what they have to say.

I don't care about the 4 pillars, I'm not interested.
Because you don't know what they are or how they relate to self defense. This is because you didn't read them after being advised to. Read them. The information comes from actual lawyers and is specific to using weapons for self defense.

I've been saying this for decades but few people seem to be paying attention. The larger "Martial Arts community" can really learn a lot if they'd pay attention to the "Gun Community," in particular the subset of Firearms for Self Defense. Besides important research and training on subjects such as stress and adrenal dump and its effects upon the human body, they also have an absolute metric crap-ton of legal expertise on using weapons for self defense. You should pay attention to it but, given how you've reacted so far, it seems unlikely that you will.

I talked to my lawyer friend "Matt Murdock" again he expanded on the topic:
OK. I chose to listen to people with real names such as Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and a whole host of legal experts in the CCW and Firearms for Self Defense community.

"not to get all legal on you but b/c i hate seeing all the wanna-be lawyers on martial talk --> Yes self defense is an affirmative defense. At the same time, in many jurisdictions, you lose the defense if you initiated the confrontation or escalated from non-deadly to deadly force.
Which is exactly what I wrote and what you chose to ignore when you told me above that you "don't care about the 4 pillars, I'm not interested" You don't know about Preclusion or Imminent Jeopardy and the rest because you already decided before hand that you had the answer and didn't like what I was telling you. Now your buddy "Matt" is agreeing with me and you don't even know it! You think that he's saying something different because you already refused to pay attention.

The criminal justice system is more nuanced than people often understand and the decisions of police/prosecutors/judges/juries are often based on their general feeling or reaction. It would end best for a person involved in an altercation where a cane was used if the responding officer believes that the use of force was justified and declines to pursue the issue further.
Well dang, doesn't that just sound familiar? It's exactly what I already told you and you just told me that I'm wrong. I specifically wrote that it doesn't matter if you were carrying a weapon, provided that it's legal for you to do so, but what mattered is if your use of it is justified (post #31 and several other times). But, because I know you're still not going to pay attention, let's go ask Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine about using a weapon in self defense, shall we?

"Depending on the specific facts of the situation, an accused person may claim that the use of deadly force was justified to excuse his actions..." He then spends a couple of pages talking about the 3 "Conditions" such as the defendant not causing the situation or being the aggressor, a reasonable and honest belief of danger, and the responsibility to try to avoid the danger before using deadly force, all of which were discussed in the 4 Pillars article which you refused to read.

I think that this result is more likely if you have a good reason for having a cane as opposed to no reason at all (I feel like it) or worse yet (I carry it for self defense)"
That's nice. However, actual examples of people using weapons for self defense seem to not bear out his concern. "What examples," you ask? Glad you asked. Here are, literally, thousands of them. You can read for days on end of actual examples. In the vast majority of them, it doesn't matter that the person had the weapon, what matters is that the use of it was considered "justified."

After further back and forth Murdock said this:

" everyone thinks that the cop is just going to take them down town and they are going to raise the "self defense" claim and they are going to get let go. If that was the case then they would never charge anyone because everyone knows to say that.
I really wish you and "Matt" would stop using Straw Man arguments. I didn't write that so stop claiming I did. What I wrote was, "You're going to have to explain WHY YOU USED IT AS A WEAPON. Where you got it and why you had it is only relevant if your explanation for why you used it is not believable because it sounds like you were starting a fight. If it's clear that you used the cane for self defense, then that's all that matters." Are you deliberately ignoring this, like the rest?

if they don't buy your defense then they will charge you and let the jury sort it out,
There "Matt" goes again, agreeing with what I already wrote and you already ignored: " Where you got it and why you had it is only relevant if your explanation for why you used it is not believable because it sounds like you were starting a fight. If it's clear that you used the cane for self defense, then that's all that matters." Remember the "Armed Citizen" link I pointed you to just a few sentences ago in this post? Notice how very many of them end with "Police declined to file charges" or "the police chief said, 'this is a clear case of self defense'." or have the Police praising their actions.

Again self defense is nuanced in itself and is not the same in every jurisdiction
there are hundreds of cases in every state that have developed an interpretation of what each states statutory self defense statute means."
Again, you made an assumption in your thread-start that you're "not sure it's the best idea for an able bodied person to walk around with a cane" because "If you're able bodied you'll probably have to justify why you had a cane to begin with." Again, it turns out that the answer is still, "No, why you had it is irrelevant as long as it was legal for you to have it." What matters is if your use of it as a weapon is legally justified. I've told you. "Matt" has told you. Mike DeWine has told you. Legal experts from the firearms world have told you.
 
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