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Re: Silver Sword

Poster: kuijt@umiacs.UMD.EDU

	From owner-atlantia@adm.csc.ncsu.edu Fri Jul 19 14:02:40 1996
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	From: Aelfgar GreySeas <aelfgar@access.digex.net>
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	Subject: Re: heartache
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	In-Reply-To: <199607171150.NAA21835@tiber.ed.umuc.edu> from "Wayne Precht" at Jul 17, 96 01:50:48 pm
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	Poster: Aelfgar GreySeas <aelfgar@access.digex.net>

	Galmyr writes:
	> I think we have had enough bashing for now.  Why don't we come up with 
	> some reasonable plans of action for policing our own behavior and those 
	> of our friends to be sure everyone has a better time at the next event.

	In that spirit, I have a thought or two for general consideration. Before I
	begin, let me say that I am not a heavy fighter (I was for a while, but that
	was long ago), and I do not know if the ideas below will make much sense in
	the current environment. I put them forward as a basis for conversation, and
	if they deserve it, as a starting point for brainstorming.

	First, I am impressed with the notion, mentioned elsewhere, that individual
	fighters can have an impact by adjusting their personal acknowledgement
	 downward, in the expectation that others will follow suit. Such a decision,
	 if widely enough spread, would be very helpful.

	Second, I wonder if a change of definition might be helpful. It occurs to me
	that our tournament fighting, as currently defined, is closer to the 
	gladitorial games of ancient Rome than to the tourneys of High Chivalric
	period. The bouts are contests to the death, where a _killing blow_ determines
	the victor.

	For reasons I only dimly comprehend, the definition of _killing blow_ has,
	over time, become heavier and heavier, and the dynamics of who wins and who
	loses do tend to push that trend in a way many have found disturbing.

	Suppose we were to redefine what it is we simulate when we fight-that instead
	of simulating combat to the death, we simulate martial contests among friendly
	competitors? In such a contest, with weapons of war, the best of warriors are
	those who can demonstrate their martial prowess without doing serious harm to
	their opponents. Death is still possible, but not the intended outcome.

	Such a change would allow us to redefine a _good_ blow at some generally
	accepted level of force, acknowledged to be less than lethal. It would also
	open the possibility, if we were of a mind, to define some level of force as
	too much, by saying that killing your opponent is not as good as successfully 
	hitting him with adequate but sublethal force. (No, I haven't the faintest
	notion of the details, but the possibility is there.)

	Well, there it is. I know this doesn't address fighting in wars, and the ideas
	are less than detailed, but maybe it will do for a start.

	Thanks, one and all, for your patience.

	I remain yours in service,


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