Would we use lightsabers?
What would we use them for?
Assume for a moment that at some point in the future (next Thursday maybe?) that lightsabers fairly similar to what is seen in the movies become available and affordable (perhaps stylized as LiteSabers™ for marketing).
What would we or anyone else do with them?
Aside from the cut through almost anything else with any part of the blade aspect of them, they are essentially swords. Swords were made impractical for close combat by fire arms. Lightsabers can deflect blaster bolts, but there have been a couple different proposed views on what would happen if a lightsaber were used to block or deflect a bullet. They range from the same as blaster bolts to only melting the bullet as it passes through the blade causing the wielder of the lightsaber to be hit by globs of molten metal.
Even if they would deflect bullets just like blaster bolts, it still is not very practical. Take a currently available ‘lightsaber’ or a bokken or similar implement and try to fend off shots from an Airsoft or paintball gun. Then have Your opponent start shooting at You with two weapons. Then have two or three or more people people start shooting at You with one or more weapons each.
For a thought experiment, think what would happen if baseball players had to hit two or three pitches in rapid succession from one of more pitchers. Hitting .200 in a game like that would be like hitting .950 in the game as it is, especially if You have no way of knowing which pitcher will throw first or next.
Remember from Episode III, many Jedi, including Masters, were gunned by groups of Clone Troopers firing a fairly large volume of blaster bolts at them. Why the Battle Droids never tried that is a great mystery.
Granted, they would not be completely useless, it is just that in many instances it would not be a very practical option or the best option. For self defense, ask Yourself this: if You lived in a state like Texas where open carry of swords is legal, would You walk around with a sword to protect Yourself? Other than a lightsaber being easier to conceal and a handful of mostly technical other details, they are still fairly similar choices.
For ceremonial purposes, what difference is there between currently available prop lightsabers and hypothetical ‘real’ lightsabers? Other than very risky haircuts during knighthood ceremonies? We could probably do that now with sharp swords if we really wanted to.
Maybe we should ask what role the lightsaber plays or should play to the Jedi and further ask if a sword can play that role too?
Licensing guarantees nothing, only the training behind it does. How do adults need permission from other adults to be adults?
That idea convinces me that most people do want freedom, just their idea of it..
Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietem
By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty.
Which I guess brings me to my next point, if you want to have some "lightsabre" fun, head down to the local trade school and ask (they won't let you, probably, most countries have all kinds of boring safety and insurance rules) if you can play with their oxy, tig, or plasma cutters, and blow some holes in metal plate (blowing holes in metal plate is not necessarily the actual purpose of all of those tools, but if you don't know what you're doing, you'll end up doing it anyway,)
Just remember to take your Kylo Ren (or Darth Vader) suit, otherwise you might find your eyes (and skin) a little worse for wear.
Uzima wrote: Access to means of defense is a right.
Whether it is wisdom or not, my country's laws are (to the effect of) you have the right to defend yourself in the event that it is required, you don't have the right to arm yourself in preparation to attack, and then call it defence if you happen to be the victor.
Uzima Moto wrote: Access to means of defense is a right. Unless a crime has been committed. I have no right to question the competency of a person in exercising their rightful sovereignty..
Well... we can agree here. Everyone has the right to defend themselves.
But with a lightsabre?
I think a quote by Tony Stark is applicable here. "If you're nothing without that suit, you don't deserve it." If you can't defend yourself without a lightsabre, then don't get one. Learn a martial art, take up boxing or something. Using any form of external tool for self defence requires extra skill, and I know many that would take up a weapon and fail simply because they don't train at all.
Example... when I moved to England, I gave my brother a synthetic sword to practise with (he said he wanted to learn, and all he had was a broken broom handle to work with). Upon learning how hard I had to train to get where I was, he gave up and instead allowed himself to fall into dillusion that "he was better than me (2 months of 'practise' versus over a year of intensive, all types of climate training) and could beat me every time in a duel".
So, after two weeks of him openly claiming his abilities, i took him in the yard and schooled him... sword against hands. He had a weapon, I did not. Yet I won. Why? Because I dedicated myself to the basics before ever taking up the lightsabre, and I still train these basics of martial arts on a regular basis to keep them sharp and shiny, whereas he wouldn't even train with the tool he was given.
And that, I find, is the issue with many people wanting a real lightsabre for self defence. It is, without needing to be said, an extremely dangerous omnidirectional cutting tool. One misstep and you lose a limb, and I feel many don't seem to understand how easy it is to slip up without extensive training.
Although while I certainly don't agree that people should not have weapons, as it should not be illegal for one to defend themselves and others, I do think training should be required for a couple weeks, on safety, not only so people don't hurt themselves but don't hurt others in the process. Like with guns as someone who is not trained well can hurt themselves or innocents in the process. Same would apply for lightsabers especially
Oddly enough, it's almost the opposite in practice (where I live)
If you want to use a gun, (or a concrete saw, or hydrofluoric acid) privately, you have to do little to no training at all (nil for the latter two, a one day safety brief and 10 rounds on target at 25m with a .22 with the former - the barest of tests of competency) all three are incredibly dangerous.
If you want to use any of them professionally, you have to undergo all sorts of training, practice, and licencing.
It seems we are more than happy to let the Individual injure themselves or others, but those acting on behalf of a corporation require governance and management.
I'm getting sidetracked here, what was the question? oh, Lightsabre Control.
I reckon follow the same formula - if you want to hack your own (or your friends') arms off in the backyard, best of luck to you. If you want to wield it on behalf of the republic (or whatever) then you need to know the rules.
The only problem really is when the Big Gang says to all the Small Gangs - We can have them but you can't (whether they say that directly with enforced laws, or it is a byproduct of economic factors is more or less irrelevant)
On a completely unrelated note, as far as what Ari said - I train martial arts on occasion, and I've never "won" a single match (for lack of a better term), so it is probably a good thing I don't do it for "self defence" (I have no idea if I'd be able to win in a shooting match, it's not something I'm really planning to ever find out)
Maybe one can use a power setting to make the setting low where all it would do is cause bruises, if you were training and then turn on the power when you are actually under attack?
But still, seems one could just use what we already have (plastic blades and LEDs) for training. Rather than having to remember to turn down a potentially life ending setting. As for using it when under attack... Have you ever been hit with a custom sabre? A proper thwack to the head will daze, stun, and even lay a person out for a bit.