Someone back in 1974 was a complete idiot who tried to ban nunchucks in New York state because people were scared that kids watching martial arts movies would cause widespread mayhem. A federal court finally slapped some sense into things, stating the Second Amendment, and ruling that it was unconstitutional to ban two sticks on a string.
We can thank Judge Pamela Chen for pulling the ultimate Bruce Lee and defeating this nonsensical attempt to ruin everyone's fun by hitting themselves in the face by accident with nunchucks. We can also thank plaintiff James Maloney for taking this all the way to the Supreme Court and getting served the knockout victory from Judge Chen.
The plaintiff, James Maloney, started his legal quest after being charged with possession of nunchucks in his home in 2000. He initially filed a complaint in 2003, and appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court when the case went against him. The Supreme Court in 2010 remanded the case back down to be reconsidered in light of a Second Amendment decision it had made in another case, and Maloney filed an amended complaint later that year.
Maloney had been focused on getting the part of the law overturned that banned nunchucks, two rigid rods connected at one end by a chain or rope, even in private homes.
In her ruling, Chen said the court couldn’t simply take that part out, and ruled that the state’s law as it pertained to possessing nunchuks as well as to manufacturing, transporting or disposing of them was in violation of the Second Amendment.
The ruling went over the history of the ban, and said it “arose out of a concern that, as a result of the rising popularity ‘of ‘Kung Fu’ movies and shows,? ‘various circles of the state’s youth’ — including ‘muggers and street gangs’ — were ‘widely’ using nunchaku to cause ‘many serious injuries.’”
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Maloney is a professor at the State University of New York’s Maritime College. He was outraged and motivated to change the ridiculous law that banned a basic item that is more likely (according to me) to have someone hit themselves in the face. Nunchucks are also used in martial arts classes and have proven over time to not be an issue.
Maloney stated, “How could a state simply ban any and all possession of a weapon that had a long and proud history as a martial-arts weapon, with recreational, therapeutic and self-defense utility?"
He planned to teach his sons how to defend themselves using martial arts and nunchucks, which to many is called responsible parenting. However, don't ever bring nunchucks to a gunfight.
Here's what most people look like on nunchucks...
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