Into the Burning Wastes
Psionics and Law
Psionics and Law
Athasian society has had to deal with the issues of psionics for hundreds of years. Each city-state has its own specific codes of what is permissible and what is not, but generally the following laws will hold true no matter where a psionicist goes.
1. Crimes committed by psionic means are punished normally. Killing someone by means of a psychic crush or by using control body to march a victim off a rooftop is still murder, and will be treated as such by most authorities. Using psionics to obstruct investigation, resist arrest, or avoid the agents of the sorcerer-king is a crime, as well.
2. A psionicist bears the guilt for any crime committed by someone under his mental control. This is difficult to prove, but there have been cases where a psionicist has been judged for the crimes of someone he dominated. There have been many more cases where criminals claimed that a mindbender made them break the law. Templars generally scoff at this plea unless some astounding evidence appears to the contrary.
3. No one may read another’s thoughts. In most cities it is illegal for a psionicist to pry into someone’s mind without consent. This law is almost impossible to enforce, but it is often used as a general charge against a psionicist who has angered the templars. Slaves aren’t counted as people under Athasian law, however; slave owners may use any means to keep control of their property.
4. No one may use the Way to influence another person’s thoughts or actions. This law is almost universal. Using the Way to dominate people or to implant post-hypnotic suggestions is considered the vilest of crimes against a free citizen. Most telepathic devotions fall under this category, including awe, daydream, aversion, repugnance, and so forth.
5. No one may use the Way to spy on another. Using clairaudience or clairvoyance to pry into the privacy of a free citizen is considered a crime. Other means of psionic espionage might include using sight link or sound link through a third party. Again, this is difficult to enforce and even more difficult to prove before the templars.
6. The summoning or contact of extraplanar powers is considered high treason. Most city dwellers take a very dim view of the reckless summoning of fiends or similar planar horrors.
7. Officers of court may use psionic interrogations in due process of the law. If necessary, the templars may summon a master of the Way to get to the bottom of almost any matter. This is usually a last resort by the templars, since even the most oppressive rulers respect their citizens’ privacy of thoughts.