[Ansteorra-rapier] Why I don't want to ban things I don't particularly want to use

Puck Curtis puck.curtis at gmail.com
Thu Oct 11 12:27:47 PDT 2012

I don't see Tivar or Robin ever being persuaded to change their positions
on this issue.

That brings us to the the brass tax.
Is the political expense of getting rid of these vestigial weapon forms
worth it today?
In other words, is it worth doing over the objections of Tivar and Robin?

Is there any other question really?


On Thu, Oct 11, 2012 at 12:14 PM, Andrew Heinrich <andrew.heinrich at gmail.com
> wrote:

> Greetings,
> The problem with this argument is that there's no major drive to bring
> Epee back into the main arena of SCA fencing. You mentioned the same gender
> consort comparison, but that's really not applicable here. In that case,
> you have people who see a very clear discriminatory bar to their achieving
> their dreams in the SCA. It's not like they can just choose someone else
> who inspires them the way their actual consort does. They can't learn to be
> straight. You *can* learn to use a heavy rapier.
> The difference between this situation and the comparison to rapier combat
> in general is that there is no groundswell of desire to play with epees and
> foils. Those weapons have died in the SCA. That's ok. If, for some reason,
> everyone stopped fighting rapier over the course of 15 years, there would
> be perfectly good reason to simply get rid of it as an activity.
> With precious few folks wanting to fence with epee and foil, it becomes
> unnecessary to maintain the infrastructure (rules, the marshallate's
> knowledge, etc) to support the use of those weapons. We can cut down on the
> number of authorizations we track, the categories we authorize in, the
> training our marshals need - this is a good thing.
> - Mateo
> On Thu, Oct 11, 2012 at 10:53 AM, Jay Rudin <rudin at peoplepc.com> wrote:
>> Some people are trying to change my mind by explaining why they have
>> concluded that epees and foils are inferior. This can't work, because my
>> argument is not based on the notion that they are as good as heavy rapiers.
>> For my purposes, they aren't
>> What a lot of people haven't noticed is that I am not disagreeing with
>> your assessment of epees and foils - just with the idea that this provides
>> any reason to ban a safe weapon that a few people like to use.
>> I've heard all of these arguments before:
>> They are poor simulators.
>> We have a better tool for combat.
>> Most places don't have competent marshals.
>> They don't fit your goals for the SCA.
>> They don't "look right".
>> Very few people want to use them.
>> Agreed.
>> If I agreed that there is a single goal for the SCA,
>> if I agreed that everybody had to share that exact goal at that exact
>> intensity,
>> If I agreed in banning what some people use for their goals,
>> If I agreed that we should only use one simulator for combat,
>> If I agreed that the SCA throws out everything that doesn't "look right",
>> If I agreed that the marshallate should be the authenticity police
>> instead of the safety patrol,
>> Then, and only then, could I agree with the idea of banning them.
>> Of course, if I, and others, agreed with all of that, then I, and others,
>> wouldn't have fought these arguments when they first came up, in the 1970s,
>> and fencing would have been banned from the SCA back then.
>> We have fencing in the SCA, with heavy rapiers and C&T and all the other
>> innovations, in large part because I, and others, fought the idea of
>> banning something most people in the SCA didn't like.
>> One of the arguments in favor of same-sex consorts is that just because
>> you don't want one is no reason for nobody else to be allowed one.
>> If you don't like epees and foils, don't use them.
>> If you don't want to marshal it, don't marshal it.
>> If there is no epee marshal on site, people cannot fight with epees, and
>> *only people who want to use epees have any responsibility to provide an
>> epee marshal*, just as if there is no C&T marshal on site, there can be
>> no C&T.
>> If you want to be free from epees and foils, then Congratulations! I
>> pronounce you free of them. You never have to face them; you never have to
>> marshal them. It is extremely rare that you even have to look at them. (I
>> wish tennis shoes, baseball fields, and telephone poles were as rare at our
>> events as epees and foils are.)
>> But the goal isn't to be free from ever having to use them - that goal
>> has been accomplished. For some reason, the idea that anybody *else *can
>> choose to use them bothers some people. It feels like the real issue is
>> that some people are allowed to have different goals or different
>> intensities for their goals in the SCA, and that bothers people who want
>> everyone to share their own goals and intensities.
>> Let's assume that you are right, and that epees and foils are in all ways
>> inferior. Let's assume that you are right, and everybody who uses them has
>> missed at least one of the points of SCA combat. But if they fight for the
>> Queen, carrying somebody's favor, then they haven't missed all of it. Why
>> stop them from pursuing the goals of the SCA that they care about, just
>> because they don't want to do one of the goals of the SCA that you care
>> about?
>> It's safe, a few people like it, it serves some SCA purposes, and if we
>> are all allowed in the SCA, instead of just the people who agree with you,
>> there is no valid reason for banning them.
>> But I have no problem with trying to talk folks out of using them. That's
>> attempting to get people to agree with you, and then to do what you want
>> because they want it too. And if someday nobody uses them, then taking them
>> out of the law wouldn't be banning them, but acknowledging that everyone
>> has dropped them, just like Ansteorra did with fiberglass. But as long as
>> *any* Ansteorrans want to use them, taking them out of the rules is an
>> attack on those people.
>> Robin of Gilwell / Jay Rudin
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