We were in class on Saturday practicing nunchaku and began to wonder how the weapon was treated in the eyes of the law.
1. Texas Law - Does someone know the specifics of Texas law? I would think that nunchaku falls under Title 10 Chapter 46 of the Texas Penal Code. Nunchaku's seem to meet the definition of a club: http://tlo2.tlc.state.tx.us/statutes/pe.toc.htm But that is just my best guess...I would consult a lawyer if a policeman tried to confiscate my nuncaku's. I know there was a great article on the laws of knives in one of our newsletters.
2. National Law - According to the Wikipedia:"Legality in the United States varies at state level, e.g., personal possession of nunchaku is illegal in New York, Arizona, California and Massachusetts, but in other states possession has not been criminalized. In New York, attorney Jim Maloney has brought a federal constitutional challenge to the statutes that criminalize simple in-home possession of nunchaku for peaceful use in martial-arts practice or legal home defense. As of March 2009, the case was awaiting the filing of a petition for certiorari for review by the U.S. Supreme Court." [They are illegal in many parts of Europe.]
3. The Supreme Court Case (pending) - Jim Maloney's website is VERY good. He discusses the current case at:
He also has a Blog called "Forbiden Sticks, a Four Century Blog Tour" - http://nunchakulaw.blogspot.com/
NPR had a great story on him as well. "Come on, they are just a couple of sticks with a string" was one of his defenses.
4. My experience - I was pulled over in Dallas and the officer saw my nunchaku's that I have had since my 12th birthday in the back of my hatchback. He tried to confiscate them, and I told him that I used them in martial arts practice and was on my way to class. He shrugged his shoulders, put them back in the trunk and proceedded to write me a ticket for expired tags. The point is that it is probably worth it to stand up for your rights if someone questions your martial arts weapon.
5. My Opinion - Using any weapon, including your pinkie finger, or even your words to threaten another is and should be illegal. However, laws specifically banning nunchaku's in a society where mass murderers go to gun shows and get weapons for their killing sprees is absurd. Our consititution specificallly protects us "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." I think our founding fathers would not pass a law banning nunchaku's and we should carry our nunchaku's with a peaceful mind and a strong heart.