Earlier this week, swords were banned in Scotland. Seriously. Starting in 2007, sales of swords will be forbidden, licensing and registration of sales of "non-domestic knives" will be mandatory, and shopkeepers will need permission from local councils to sell anything scarier than a chef's knife.

The announcement of the ban follows a five-week amnesty, in which blade owners were encouraged to turn in their weapons voluntarily. Chief Inspector Alex McGuire, from the Safer Scotland co-ordination unit, said he was "deeply disappointed" to learn that more than 400 knives had been seized by police sweeping Scottish streets in the weeks following the amnesty:

"Although it shows that police are proactively searching for knife carriers, it clearly shows that there are individuals still out there who continue to think it's acceptable to carry a weapon in 21st Century Scotland."

To add insult to injury, police and politicos are encouraging shopkeepers to stop selling weapons now, and calling for the public to boycott shops that increase sales in the months leading up to the ban.

Perhaps it's time for Scotsmen to ask themselves WWWWD? (What Would William Wallace Do?)

Kerry Howley wrote about Scotland's ban on glass in pubs earlier this summer.

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  1. …encoraging…


    Also, the link doesn’t work.

  2. They really have gone mad in the UK. I laughed when I read it, but I was not surprised and nor was I unconcerned. I wonder how long before we head down this road — or do Americans have the basic good sense to prevent something like this from happening? I think we’re more like the proverbial toad in a pot of water on the stove.

  3. When swords are outlawed, only hordes of angry Celts will have swords.

    Tremble, English soccer fans. Tremble.

  4. What has happened to this world?

  5. One of the Australian states (Victoria, I think) did this a couple of years ago. If I remember rightly the authorities even admitted that the rate of sword-related crime was right around zero.

    And like most weapons control laws the ban had no effect on violent crime rates (unless you wanted to claim that the increase in violent crime is due to the sword ban, but I doubt anyone wants to do that).

  6. OMG!!! My post got through!

    Praise be unto the server squirrel!

  7. They may take our swords and glassware, but they will never take our freeedddooommmm! Uh, oh, wait, they have. Never mind.

  8. Why does the first link (swords were banned in Scotland) go to a story about displaying William Wallace’s sword in Manhattan and how it needs special handling to avoid damage?

  9. There’s a novelty bumper sticker popular amongst gamers: “When guns are banned, can we carry swords?”

    I guess the answer is “no.”

  10. WWWWD?

    I don’t know… blame the Jews, I guess.

  11. Just think, folks: If you were reading inactivist.org you could read stuff by H&R commenters without AND post your own comments!

    The irony is that if this comment gets through then the content is false. If it doesn’t get through then it’s true and nobody will know.

    So, suppose there was a liar from Crete…

  12. Oh no! Run! He has a board and it has a nail in it!

  13. It would be interesting to scan back through H&R for instances of “Oh that’s just a slippery slope argument.”

  14. Who cares about swords? They should ban Ice-Picks instead!

  15. When I taught HS in rural NM, one of my student’s father was killed by a broad sword in a local bar (yep, NM is a fun state).

    Random. I know, but…

    Another random fact about the case that I always found interesting…the victim was carrying a gun (concealed) at the time (he was worried because of an inter-tribal feud, but that gets complicated). Apparently, the guy with the sword didn’t worry that maybe he might get shot…maybe, just maybe, because he couldn’t see the gun. I’ve always wondered how it all would have played out if the victim had the gun on his belt in open view.

    I am pretty sure that swords are arms that we have a right to here, but would they be useful for the militia?

  16. Well, first William would go talk to the clans. They’d discuss the matter calmly, over some scotch and wee bit o’ haggis. They’d play some Highland games. And go home.

    The next morning, they’d paint their faces white and blue, pick up their swords, and hack off the heads of the people who dared threaten their swords.


  17. When WW whipped out that dried thistle his little girlfriend had given him, it looked too vibrant to me considering where it had resided lo those many years: in a grimy secret compartment in his truss. yuk.

    Has anyone here ever tried to press a thistle?
    (Say that quickly four times.)

  18. No.


    Guy killed me, Mal.

    He killed me with a sword.
    How weird is that?

    I got a short span here.

    They destroyed my equipment…

    but I have a backup unit.

    Bottom of the complex,
    right over the generator.

    Hard to get to.
    I know they missed it.

    They can’t stop
    the signal, Mal.

  19. You gotta be jerking me!

    What the fuck?! The Gathering is supposed to be in Edinboro this year. I really pushed it. There goes my cred.

    There’s NO FUCKING WAY we can change the venue at this point. Dammit, it’s going to be hard enough just letting people know.

    GOD-DAMN it, we’re going to have to cancel the thing. And I just sent out the Newsletter…


  20. WWWWD?

    He’d blame the Jews, of course.

  21. I am pretty sure that swords are arms that we have a right to here, but would they be useful for the militia?

    Ask the U.S. Marines.

  22. I sense a lot of drug suspicions in the female locker room…toking up in the showers, I bet.
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