Phoenix Comic Con has banned all prop weapons after a man with a real gun, ammunition, and other weapons was caught at the convention. THANK GOD they caught the wacko.
Here’s what US News and World Report had to say:
“Comicon imposed drastic security measures Friday after authorities said a man came to the event a day earlier armed with four loaded guns, ammunition and a knife. Police said the man had threatened to harm a performer and posted online threats against police officers, convinced he was the alter-ego of a Marvel comic book character called the Punisher. In response to the scare, police added extra security and banned all costume prop weapons, including swords, sabers and fake guns. Comicon fans were not amused.” Full article here >>>
Our buddy Tony Kim, from Crazy4ComicCon, was there in Phoenix exhibiting with his geek apparel company Hero Within (Booth HH512). He had this to say: “It was already an eventful con when police apprehended an armed gunman wandering around taking photos of police officers. With a shotgun, pistols, ammo and body armor, a recipe for disaster was in the making. Thankfully the worst case scenario was averted. Now, besides upgraded security, there will be no cosplay weapons allowed at the show. It will be interesting to see how this impacts future shows like San Diego Comic-Con.”
Full article here >>>
First and foremost, of course safety has to be the biggest, most important priority. But what about prop weapons that are part of cosplay? Here, we see that Phoenix Comic Con has banned prop weapons and added extra security, causing super-long lines.
First of all, let’s put this right on the table…. in matters of safety, better safe than sorry, right? I mean, I think so…..HOWEVER, c’mon, folks, do we really think that banning plastic bats and giant styrofoam swords is making us any safer? I get it — it’s called “an abundance of caution.” But how excessive must we be?
Will this affect upcoming conventions, such as San Diego Comic-Con? According to Topher Davila, from the popular Comic-Con panel “Full Time Creative Career On A Part Time Schedule“:
“SDCC will be fine. They have literally five different security companies. One does the outside, another the foyer, another the dealers room, another the general lead, and I forget the other. I’m not worried about someone getting in and doing something. With that level of security, they’d get caught. That doesn’t mean they wouldn’t try, though, and that would mess up what access everyone has.”
Online poster Mark Alvarado, said this about SDCC:
“Besides the security staff, SDPD has a large presence at SDCC. Last year I took an early morning stroll outside the convention center and saw the PD’s Mobile Command Center Step Van with the police planning their strategies for that day. Off to the side, I saw more than a dozen PD cars. Plus, SDPD has a Mobile Jail / Decon Unit. Restrictions on prop weapons might happen, but I feel safe at SDCC with all the PD that the city provides.”
Last year, Cheeseman, from the Con Guy, was prevented from entering the convention center because the plastic cosplay bat on his head was considered a possible dangerous weapon. In all honesty, this was completely silly. You can see Cheeseman’s cosplay here:
— The Con Guy (@TheConGuyDotCom) July 22, 2016
We COMPLETELY support the police and all the security companies doing their best to keep us safe. And from what I can detect, they’ve done an incredible job. But when does it cross the line and start to inhibit the experience? How long before we have to walk through a metal detector to enter? Jeeze-o-Pete, can you imagine the lines???
We’re not sure there is any right answer, but for crying out loud people — can we KNOCK IT OFF with the real guns and weapons? The world right now is a crazy dangerous place, but our cons have been relatively safe places for us. We haven’t had to worry about this crap. I guess those days are gone, right? Or are they? Just because one looney-bin got into a con with a gun DOES NOT MEAN it’s a trend. It’s not! How many times has this happened? I’m not sure of another example — although I’m sure there’ve been some type of foolishness somewhere.
KEEP OUR EYES OPEN
Let’s keep our eyes open, and in keeping with the national theme: If you see something, say something. Let’s police ourselves. But… let’s be prepared for some enhanced security measures…. If San Diego plans to ban prop weapons, they need to let us know ASAP. Cosplayers spend ALL YEAR preparing for these events, and sometimes their prop weapons are as much a part of their cosplay as anything else.
Let’s be on the lookout at San Diego, at Dragon Con, at Emerald City, in Salt Lake, in Orlando, and in Phoenix…. let’s be on the lookout everywhere…. and if there are extra checkpoints, let’s cooperate and do it quickly. But organizers, please try to find an alternative to banning all props.
There used to be a day, not too long ago, when people could comfortably walk on an airplane with little to no stress…. now, we must lose our shoes, our belts, and our sanity as some bozo gropes us, all in the name of sanity. Let’s not lose our cons to this madness as well.
We’ll see you at the cons!