Originally Posted by celegorm
Not to derail the thread, you can anyone who wants to talk about it can make a new thread or PM me but most states here in the US have adapted a very "English" things castle doctrine. Our home is our "castle" and if you break in you're assumed to be a threat and we can do anything required to make you not a threat and assuming you don't put extra rounds into them or stab them extra times "just to be sure" you're safe from prosecution.
it's not quite as transparent as either of those...
in the UK you can't "do _anything_ to protect your property" prime example being a guy called tony martin who made the news I guess nearly two decades ago now.
he found his house was being robbed repeatedly, so he illegally bought and illegally stored a couple of shot guns and shot the guys who were robbing him. shooting them in the back as they ran away. I can't remember exactly, but I believe in the dark also... he (quite understandably) went to prison.
a lot of people were saying at the time that an English mans home is his castle and right to defend and all that... that is broadly true, but does not extend to pre-meditated murder...
It has a lot to do with pre-meditation. lets say for example you know that you have skylight and you believe an intruder is likely to fall through it. leaving knifes points up underneath that specifically to injure/kill an intruder would not be legal. (pretty sure trapping your property like that would fall outside of the "you can do _anything_ to protect yourself" that you said above in the US?)
likewise use of highly visible razor wire is legal, and you would need to put up warning signs, cementing razor blades into a wall so that they cannot be seen until they are felt by the guy climbing over the wall who then looses his fingers... can't be done...
And there is a good reason for this. - if your house was on fire you'd want the fire fighters climbing over that wall. if there was someone trying to rob your house you may want the police climbing over said wall to defend your property... and they need to do their job without getting injured.
Keeping a knife under your pillow in that way is kind of setting a trap. you're keeping it there for the sole purpose of seeking out and confronting trouble. so no, its not strictly illegal to keep a knife under your pillow, but if you happen to kill a guy with a knife that happened to be under your pillow, it probably not going to play out brilliantly for you.
Keeping a knife in a draw in your room, or hidden in the wardrobe (lets say you go hunting and are keeping it away from the kids) isn't keeping it for self defense, grabbing a knife from a knife block in a kitchen is just self defence. grabbing a "stanley knife"/box cutter from the tool box is just self defense... grabbing a hatchet from the wood shed... well. you left the house once, so going back inside to confront trouble with an axe is probably now not self defense!
on the subject of grabbing a hatchet. I'm not sure how brutally you may defend yourself. I would guess that is not defined in law!
There are also quite strict laws in the UK about what you can any cannot have. for the most part you can have practically anything in the privacy of your own home. (e.g there are people with Army daggers, and people who own cannons) but there are some restrictions, (e.g you can't have hand guns in the UK at all [I think some shooting clubs still have hand guns for range shooting... but mostly nobody has or wants handguns.) other firearms (and there is a distinction between a firearm which even covers very high power hunting air riffles) and 2 barrel shotguns... there are restrictions on how you are allowed to keep those guns in your own home also. (e.g most be an approved type gunsafe, fixed to a proper wall, (exterior type brick) using the proper type wall anchor bolts, with approved locks...
(no show cases or glass cases any more, outside of approved type gun safe rooms.) - and these are inspected when you come to renew your firearms certificate, (which is valid for 6 years at a time)
you must not keep qualifying guns (firearms or shotguns) in the UK without a valid license, - if your license expires you must take them to a gun smith to store whilst you're unlicensed...
There are also rules in the UK about what sort of knives you are allowed to carry in public.
the general theme of that, is, nothing you might kill someone with.
so that means, no lock knifes, no butterfly knives, no fixed blade knives (over a certain length) because those are all far too handy to stab at things with.
blade length should be not more than 3 inches, (though you can still get a pretty good lung injury with that!) it's unlikely to be heart stabbing length.
and that law would really even cover carrying a screw driver in your coat pocket.
and this applies to blades of any type in public without having a good reason.
consider a good reason might be a chef with 20 "illegal to carry" type knives in a knife roll on his way to or from work...
you also can't take guns out on public without good reason.
e.g. to/from a gunsmith, to/from a hunting trip...
And whilst in the US, you talk about open carry and need a special concealed carry permit, in the UK, you would be expected to conceal any weapons that you had.
and a peculiarity of the Law in the UK is that your locked car, parked in a public place counts as a public place. (so you can't leave your guns/knives in the car and go to the pub.
as a slightly weirder note, when I've said the UK in this post what I really mean in England and Wales, and Scottish and Irish law is devolved, and I don't need to know it/can't be bothered to look it up.
Long and short of it... from the UK, you may get a few shotgun pictures, some people may have riffles. (much less common).
might get a few knifes. Katana type things are probably going to be limited to wooden training ones.
you may find an interesting array of more vintage weapons, - I have a friend who has some swords, including antique English civil war swords, that have clearly been used in anger at some point in their life...
the closest I have to a weapon is a pint glass... (A surprisingly brutal weapon actually)