When does a knife turn from tool to weapon?

OK, this is a trick question. It depends on whether you are using the legal definition of “weapon” or the practical one. And in case you were wondering, yes, the query was inspired by yet another interestingly named fighting weapon:

Bodyguard Full Tang Fighting Tool.

Bodyguard Full Tang Fighting Knife Tool
[view full size]

Now this is a neat little knife. A single piece blade, with a mildly contoured handle, and cut outs that might actually be useful. I especially like the blade, simple straight edge with a westernized tanto point, clip point on the back, sharp straight angle on the front edge. Kind of like a cross between a traditional boot knife and a tanto with no grip. Nice.

But what also caught my attention is how it was described as a “tool” on the site I found it on. Notwithstanding the fact that they include “full tang” and “knife” in it’s description, despite these being a painfully obvious facts, the “tool” nomenclature raises a rather thorny philosophical question. Is this any more a tool than any other knife? Or any other weapon for that matter? In my humble opinion, No. Absolutely not. In spite of what anyone may have you believe, a weapon, in fact any weapon, is a tool.

Yep. Don’t believe me? Look it up. A weapon is a tool, and any tool can also be a weapon. And what’s more, almost anything can be pressed into service as a weapon.  So what’s the difference? It’s design purpose? Maybe. One could definitely argue that a Fairbairn-Sykes fighting knife has no useful purpose beyond inflicting grievous bodily harm upon anothers person.

But that would be ignoring both it’s historic and aesthetic value. To some, (myself included) it is more than just a knife. It’s a piece of history. An object d’art. And a quite beautiful one at that. As benign as an modern art sculpture. Just in steel. But no more, or less dangerous than the one wielding it.

Just a random thought for the day… 🙂

Bodyguard Full Tang Fighting Tool – [True Swords]


2 Responses to “When does a knife turn from tool to weapon?”

  1. 1 Niccolo
    April 28, 2008 at 6:18 am

    What amuses me is this weapon really has no choice but to be ‘full tang’…

  2. April 29, 2008 at 6:58 pm

    LOL Yeah really… It’s like a car maker advertising that their diesel trucks all have high compression internal combustion engines…

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