Self-defense is the reason most people get into martial arts or learn how to fire a gun. In this day and age, attacks can come from anywhere at any time and with any weapon. Obviously, the best form of self-defense is to escape the situation, but when that is not an option, is it really fair that as a law abiding citizen you only have your fists to defend yourself with?
Apart from the fact that carrying knives is often illegal in most of Europe, America, Australia and Asia, we ask the question whether carrying knives is a good decision when it comes to defending yourself if th time should arise.
In many cases, if you are also armed, then you’ll at least be on par with your attacker. Some guy jumps you and puts a knife to your back, you can just as easily spin around and hold one to his throat. If you can pull it off, then they’ll soon be eager to leave you and not cause any more trouble and you can carry on with your day wallet and phone still in your jacket pocket.
If you are choosing a knife for self-defense, make sure it’s a knife that is designed for such a role. There is no point in carrying a machete around or a samurai sword, because apart from looking like a total dork (or a crazed madman that’ll be prime target practice for the cops), they are not designed for defense against someone attacking you with a four inch kitchen knife. If it doesn’t look menacing and is clearly a self-defense tool, you can much more easily talk your way out of arrest or prosecution if at any time you end up needing to use it.
Knives are generally bad news. Sure, you are armed but you are armed with something that is considered ‘deadly force’. One stab in the wrong place and you’ve severed an artery and killed your attacker. Now it is you standing in court, looking at a murder or manslaughter charge.
Fights can get out of hand very quickly, and body parts can be moving very quickly – leaving you open to accidentally stabbing someone (or yourself) – especially if you have not had any formal training.
If you don’t kill someone, you could seriously injure them and the same rules apply. A knife is a last resort, but to have it at all opens up hundreds more dangerous opportunities to arise.
If the attacker has a knife himself, or you’re a woman and are being sexually assaulted, then the use of a knife in defending yourself would most likely be justified in court. The issue is not a simple one and there are a number of grey areas. We can’t say we approve of people who carry knives, but if we were being attacked by someone wielding a big knife, I expect we’d like to have one too, just to make it fair.
Either way, we suggest you check the laws in your area and don’t do anything that would put your life at risk – be that physical risk or legal risk. There is nothing worse than being stopped by a police man and getting a criminal record because you wanted to defend yourself in a rough neighbourhood…well, apart from maybe being stabbed yourself.