California's SB274 - Anything being done about it?

Joined
May 3, 2001
Messages
368
Hi All,

I've learned a lot from these great forums, but haven't seen much on SB274, which is pending legislation in California.

If passed and signed by the governor, SB274 will modify the exception to Penal Code Section 653K which allows us to carry locking folders concealed. It will add a requirement that there be a detent or other resistance mechanism which must be overcome before the blade is opened.

Apparently, the Ventura County Sheriff (?) complained that some gang bangers were carrying cheapie imported knives that could be snapped open too easily with the wrist, and asked for legislation making such knives "switchblades."

From looking up the bill on the Senate's site,

<A HREF="http://info.sen.ca.gov/cgi-bin/postquery?bill_number=sb_274&sess=CUR&house=B&site=sen" TARGET=_blank>http://info.sen.ca.gov/cgi-bin/postquery?bill_number=sb_274&sess=CUR&house=B&site=sen[/UR L]

(if you can't cut-and-paste this link, go to http://www.sen.ca.gov,</A> then click on Legislation, then search for SB274)

it seems to have passed each committee with no problems at all.

Is anyone working to stop this bill? What's the chance that this bill will be carried though the legislature without any further hitches? Are the manufacturers trying to lobby against it?

Or, is it possible that this bill won't affect most of our knives? I don't understand the technical side of knives all that well. Ernest Emerson told me that my Commander has such a detent and ball to hold the blade in place, but it's pretty easy for me to snap the blade open, I must say. Would I have to tighten up the pivot screw if SB274 passed? How about the Ken Onion folders that have an index finger assisted opening? No chance of owning one of those? (not that I have the $$$ for one right now!) I'm a totally confused knife newbie! Thanks for any info.

Best regards,

Johnny

[This message has been edited by JohnnyLightOn (edited 05-30-2001).]
 

shootist16

knife law moderator
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The AKTI has done an excellent job in combating such draconian laws as well as educating people. They need all of our support if they are to be successful. I am moving this to their forum where it will be more likely to get an accurate response. I will leave a copy here as well.

------------------
Dennis Bible

....Almost here, The Leading Edge....
http://www.theleadingedgeonline.com
 
Joined
May 30, 2001
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36
It appears the AKTI spoke in support of this bill in the Senate so it should be interesting to see what they have to say. The arguments make sense, the proposed legislation as it stands does not, it is pretty vague and open to interpretation.

Good catch, I had not seen this one.
The committe arguments were really scary
 
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Messages
368
I have to question the logic of the AKTI's arguments in *favor* of this bill! Now for all I know, the AKTI has been instrumental in the protection of knife owners. But look at what they said here (see Senate Committee on Public Safety arguments,
http://info.sen.ca.gov/pub/bill/sen/sb_0251-0300/sb_274_cfa_20010403_130913_sen_comm.html):

"4. Support of the American Knife and Tool Institute

The American Knife & Tool Institute (AKTI) writes in support of this bill:

...The proposed amendments to Penal Code section 653k would only allow knives to fall under the exemption from the switchblade law if the knife contains a detent or similar mechanism. Such mechanisms ensure there is a measure of resistance that prevents the knife from being easily opened with a flick of the wrist.

Most of the knives that are being confiscated by law enforcement are "junk knives" that do not have such resistance mechanisms. This is why junk knives are easily opened, often with the flick of a wrist, rather than through the use of the thumb to rotate the blade into its open and locked position. The exception for one-handed opening knives was designed to decriminalize the legitimate use of these extremely functional tools by law-abiding citizens. The proposed amendments accomplish this important purpose by establishing more objective criteria for determining whether a knife meets the intended exception to the switchblade law."

OK...do you know what that criteria will be? Whether your knife can be opened by flicking the wrist! I wonder if Ernest Emerson knows the significance of this? And all the other manufacturers of knives that you can flick open? Emerson told me his knives are in the clear by virtue of their ball detent; it sounded as if he had been told that by reliable sources. But that doesn't change the test that could be used by LEOs in the street and prosecutors and judges in court. You can flick your knife open, hence it's a switchblade, hence your prosecution for felony violation of 12020(a).

Jim March, are you reading this thread? What are your thoughts? Am I missing something here? In my opinion, this is a serious situation.

Best,

Johnny
 
Joined
May 1, 2000
Messages
2,257
AKTI helped write this bill. The previous version was much worse. As it stands I think it's still too vague. Those voting on this law don't seem to understand that, even with a ball detent, a folder can still be flicked open, often quite easily. Hopefully, the wording of this bill will be cleared/cleaned up before/if it passes. By the reading of it, I still don't know if my AFCK is legal, because it does have a detent, but can still be easily flicked open, and whether or not Axis/Rolling/Arc locks are still legal isn't clear either, because when the lock release is pulled back the bias towards the closed position goes away. The bill was originally sponsored by people who weren't happy that knives that could be flicked open were legal. We, knife people, know that all knives can be flicked open so they had better not be made illegal. The detent/bias language was intended to mediate between these two sides, but I think both sides are reading that language differently, and that could cause serious problems in court. I'm guessing that this bill is being understood by those who originally supported it as a way of banning knives that can be opened by a flick of the wrist, and the detent/bias is something which makes it impossible to flick a knife open. I think that AKTI reads that language to mean that any knife with any kind of detent or bias will still be ok. What concerns me is the possibility that my linerlock or axis lock will be shown in court to be flickable, and therefore lacking in the necessary detent/bias. This needs to be resolved before such a bill is passed. AKTI, if you're listening, please go in there and make this bill more clear somehow. This has been discussed in the past, maybe I'll go look up the threads and post links to them. Otherwise someone else can, check in Politics.

------------------
Jason aka medusaoblongata
-----------------------
"Is not giving a need? Is not receiving mercy?" - Thus Spoke Zarathustra
"Cutting his throat is only a momentary pleasure and is bound to get you talked about." - Lazarus Long
"Knowledge is not made for understanding; it is made for cutting." - Michel Foucault
 
Joined
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I've been tracking laws through the legislature and analyzing their effects on California citizens for seven years. I guarantee you that this bill is very bad juju, the way it is right now.

Jason, I read the thread you're referring to. It's http://www.bladeforums.com/ubb/Forum11/HTML/000578.html. I understand now the history of this better.

This current proposed language may be a compromise, but IT'S A BAD COMPROMISE. It would have been much better to organize knife owners, dealers, and manufacturers to lobby against the bill through letters, e-mails, faxes, and phone calls until acceptable language was drafted.

At this point, California knife owners are in trouble because the AKTI has already testified in favor of this bill. It's pretty much too late to do any effective lobbying, because we have been spoken for. Unless enough knife people with something at stake--especially manufacturers and dealers--convince the AKTI to reverse its position.

The best thing that can be done at this point is to interject language into the bill which states that the legislative intent is to prevent gang members and other career criminals from carrying knives, and that knives with a detent or other resistance mechanism are legal period, whether or not you can flip them open. Or at least, to put such language into the legislative analysis.

This last point is very important. There was a case that came down last year from the California Supreme Court, People v. Rubelcava (23 Cal. 4th 322), where the court used language from the committee sessions to say that the legislature clearly intended to criminalize all sorts of knife carrying.

Here's how the court reasoned: "..the Legislature recognized that the new definition may criminalize the "innocent" carrying of legal instruments such as steak knives, scissors...and metal knitting needles, but concluded "there is no need to carry such items concealed in public." (Sen. Com. on Crim. Procedure, Analysis of Assem. Bill No. 1222 (1995-1996 Reg. Sess.) as amended May 31, 1995, pp. 3, 5-6.)"

Note that the court referred to the committee analysis. Right now, the way the Senate committee analysis reads is that the AKTI agrees that knives which can be flipped open should be illegal.

AKTI, please help with this. Others involved in any way with California: please call upon everyone you know at AKTI and get them involved again. And organize among yourselves as well. Or many law abiding knife owners in our largest state will suffer the consequences (and your business will suffer as well).

California is a legislative leader. What happens here is followed by other states years down the line.

Johnny
 

Jim March

Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider
Joined
Oct 7, 1998
Messages
3,018
Ohhh God.

This isn't good.

OK, here's the exact text:

-----------
For the purposes of this section, "switchblade knife" means a knife having the appearance of a pocketknife and includes a spring-blade knife, snap-blade knife, gravity knife or any other similar type knife, the blade or blades of which are two or more inches long and which can be released automatically by a flick of a button, pressure on the handle, flip of the wrist or other mechanical device, or is released by the weight of the blade or by any type of mechanism whatsoever.

"Switchblade knife" does not include a knife that opens with one hand utilizing thumb pressure applied solely to the blade of the knife or a thumb stud attached to the blade, "provided that the knife has a detent or other mechanism that provides resistance that must be overcome in opening the blade, or that biases the blade back toward its closed position". [Ed note: the last half of the last sentence, marked by quotes, is the new text we have to worry about.]
-----------

OK, I see three major problems here:

1) Interpretation. In the case of my Sifu with Rolling Lock, there's a detent all right, and if you pull the blade open with about 1/2" of tip movement, it'll get sucked back in. BUT if I trip the release lever, the detent and "suction effect" go away. Does that make Sifu carry a felony? You'd think I'd be clear because "those features are on the knife" and there's no wording about disabling it. But what's a crooked cop or "anti-weapon" DA going to do here? The BM Axis lock, SOG's ArcLock and God knows how many others work the same way...for that matter, many lockbacks such as the entire Cold Steel Zytel lockback line and a lot of Spydercos are no different. And remember, there's NO charge below felony possible here!

2) Low-cost knives. Some people just buy junk, as work/carry knives. Should that get them declared felons?

3) ENTROPY! What happens when my pivot screw loosens up in my pocket? What happens when my "detent" wears out, or the spring breaks in my pocket and it turns dangerously loose. I just became a felon?

Remember the word FELON! That's what's at stake here!

Crap.

I'm sitting here with three folders ranging from good to excellent quality, a CRKT Apache (actually two, long story) worth about $40ish at discount, an old AlMar Jumbo large linerlock, and the Sifu. All would at least theoretically pass the test, with the above caveats.

Lemme see what I can do here...

Jim
 
Joined
May 30, 2001
Messages
36
Johnny – You’re exactly right, as written the street level test will be to try and flick it open. If it does, say good-bye. You can plead it in court and maybe even win, but you know those forms that ask if you have ever been arrested? Not convicted …arrested. Try to get a decent job with that box checked off. Bad juju indeed!.

My BM CQC7 will be OK since it has to be wrestled open, but a “real” Emerson (not that I would own any such potentially illegal item) is much different … or so I’m told.

There is also language in the “analysis” that suggests that the definition of switchblade lies less in the mechanism used to open the knife than in the speed in which it is opened. This could be trouble down stream for things like the “Wave” feature on some Emerson models (I hate to sound like I’m picking on them).

The idea that any knife that can be flicked open is a switchblade is just wrong! PRoK indeed!

Stay safe.
 

Jim March

Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider
Joined
Oct 7, 1998
Messages
3,018
OK. I talked to Johnny by phone today, and he had a very important point to make.

ATKI utterly screwed up when they said the intent was to "ban knives that can be flicked open". That sort of thing, contained in the official legislative intent statement, has an effect on the courts. It allows them to say that a particular knife "doesn't have enough of a detent" if it can be power-flicked open.

OK, here's what we're gonna do.

It'll hit one of the Assembly committees soon, probably Public Safety, which is bad...lots of Dems.

Despite that, we're gonna try and stop it there.

I need Bay Area knifeknuts to join me in Sacramento when this comes up in that Committee - I'll find out when that is and post it here tomorrow. I'm going to try and get permission from Mike Turber to speak as a representative of BF, while mentioning the size of our subscriber base.

If you can't show up in person, I'll need one more thing: a huge friggin' pile of knives
smile.gif
. Sebenzas, Buck110s, Emersons, BMs, a whole bunch. I'm gonna explain the problem, explain how the courts and cops are gonna see it, and then start snappin'...and THEN explain that they're about to criminalize over one million California residents through a law that can be interpreted by the courts DIFFERENTLY than how it's worded on paper, thanks to mistakes by ATKI.

It's our only hope.

Jim
 
Joined
May 26, 1999
Messages
1,964
Wow... I really don't like what I see here. People need to get on the same page.

AKTI represents the entire knife industry and has been fighting to save one-handers in California for years. In fact, AKTI was actually formed specifically as a result of Buck Knives fighting to change the switch-blade law in '97. Obviously, AKTI thought that all one-handers would be made completely illegal if they didn't compromise on this bill.

Do you guys really think that you know more about this issue than the AKTI does? Be honest. Some of you apparently just found out about this bill - have you even read all the relavent threads about it around BFC or looked at AKTI's website? http://www.akti.org/onehandcal.html And some of you have known about this since last year - why are you complaining now, after AKTI has already testified? Why didn't you take action earlier?

People here worry that the axis lock might become illegal, but Les DeAsis is a President of AKTI and one of the people who decided to make the compromise. He must either believe that the axis lock will not become illegal or that it is necessary to risk it. I can't imagine that he hasn't studied this issue more carefully than we have, since the axis lock is now the most important feature on Benchmade knives.

You want to "organize knife owners, dealers, and manufacturers to lobby against the bill"? Knife owners, dealers, and manufacturers have already organized to form the AKTI!

I'm not saying that anyone here is right or wrong. All I'm saying is that you should think long and hard before you go on a crusade to undo what the ATKI has accomplished with this bill, regardless of how you might feel about it. There simply aren't that many people in America who care about knife laws, and if we're not all on the same page (whatever that page may be), we can never hope to mount a successful defense.

------------------
Cerulean

"The hairy-armed person who figured out how to put an edge on a suitable rock made it possible for us to be recognizably human in the first place." - J.K.M.

[This message has been edited by cerulean (edited 06-01-2001).]
 
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Cerulean,

It’s not my goal to denigrate the AKTI. I know I’m coming here as a newbie to Bladeforums, and I do appreciate this community and its members. I originally posted this in the law forum, and recognized in an earlier post that the AKTI may have made significant prior efforts to protect knife owners. The $50,000 the AKTI has spent so far is impressive, and I believe they have made a sincere effort and improved the language in the bill.

But organizations are not infallible, however good their people and their intent. In this case, I believe they did not go far enough in their efforts. The people in the knife business who I have recently talked to about this have believed that knife manufacturers, dealers, and owners will largely be in the clear if AB274 passes--—this is not true if the knife can be easily opened with a flick of the wrist.

I’m an attorney and a well-known authority on California firearms laws. On a weekly basis, my job involves dealing with otherwise law abiding citizens who have violated one of the many firearms laws and are now in trouble. I also have followed the knife laws, because a felony knife violation affects one's ability to own a gun. However, I usually review the knife laws each year after any bills have been signed by the governor, as opposed to all through the year as I do with firearms laws. I’m sorry I didn’t post anything earlier; I just picked up on this situation.

I didn’t come here as an attorney, and I still don’t. I came as an interested participant on subjects other than the law. Because I recognize the potential effects of AB274, however, I am trying to do my part to inspire people to pick up the fight again and fix this bill so it affects the gang bangers it was intended to restrict, without putting law abiding citizens in needless legal jeopardy.

I certainly do not want to start a crusade against what the AKTI did. Instead, I want people in and out of the AKTI to encourage AKTI to take a very close look at what the current language is, ***including in the committee analysis***, and do everything possible to reopen this matter and improve it. It’s currently too restrictive, in my opinion, and if people really understood the consequences they would be much more motivated to take action.

Best regards,

Johnny

[This message has been edited by JohnnyLightOn (edited 06-01-2001).]
 
Joined
May 29, 2001
Messages
101
I'm fairly new to the knife community and I came across AKTI's site a few days ago for the first time.

The shame of all of this is that it seems that when it comes to California all that a group like this can hope to do is stick their finger in the proverbial dike to keep it from bursting a little while longer.

Every compromise with gun grabbers and now knife grabbers is a defeat. I'm sure I'm not telling anybody here anything as I doubt there are many places on the web where the issues are as well understood as on this forum.

In a year or two after this law passes, no matter what language is used, there will be another law that will be completely unreasonable....and once again there will be a compromise and by inches a little more freedom will be gone...and so will the ability to legally own so much as a butter spreader.

Then I guess they will have to ban rocks and sticks and spend billions to gather all rocks and tree branches up. Or better yet perhaps a community buy-up program where you can turn in your rocks and sticks for cash or exchange them for condoms or clean needles or whatever other left-coast scheme they can come up with.

Advice to freedom loving Americans in California....we have 49 other states (some better than others) for your enjoyment....may I suggest you select one and move somewhere that its not already too late to reverse the flow.


 
Joined
May 25, 1999
Messages
668
When people say I ought to join the AKTI, I ask them "what has the AKTI done for knife owners and users?" No one has given me anything really concrete what the AKTI has done for end users, only for knife manufactures. Now, we have them WRITING regressive knife laws! You mean to tell me that they simply "utterly screwed up" by using using language like "ban knives that can be flicked open"..??!!! (Oops!) Thanks, AKTI! With friends like you, who needs Democrats?

People, where is your outrage? If this bill had been written by some bed wetting liberal, we`d all be screaming bloody murder. But, since it was written by our "friend", the AKTI, we tread on eggshells not to say anything bad about this fine organization. Sorry, but the AKTI does NOT have my best interests in mind. They are, at best, a misguided NRA-lite. We`d be better off without their "leadership".

Maybe someday, someone from the AKTI will bother to post something in this thread. Frankly, I was surprised to see any action in this forum at all. This may be the most deservedly neglected forum on BF.
 
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May 3, 2001
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I really don't think the AKTI did anything bad on purpose. It's obvious they have worked hard on this issue, spending a lot of time and money. Without their input, AB274 would undoubtably be a lot worse. No one else would have picked up the reins.

But their efforts didn't go far enough, and more work needs to be done immediately. If AKTI was the only group speaking on behalf of the knife community, it would have been difficult to achieve more than they were able to. I think they should have raised more of an alarm among the knife community earlier, however. In the firearms community, thousands of gun freedom advocates communicate by e-mail and coordinate mass phone calls, letters, faxes, and e-mails in advance of committee hearings on bills that affect the law abiding citizen more than the criminal.

Also, I should point out that AKTI is not writing the text of the bill. Their testimony on the Legislature's committee level can be interpreted as agreeing that knives that can be flicked open without using one's thumb should be banned.

The California knife community must get more involved with SB274 before it is heard in the Assembly Public Safety Committee, which is its next step. The author of the bill, Senator Karnette, should be encouraged through intense lobbying to rewrite the bill and put it through again.

Some *alternatives* to SB274's current language:

- Enhanced penalties for anyone committing a violent crime while in possession of a knife.

- Ban possession of knives in public places by members of criminal street gangs.

These seem like they would target the gang members that the district attorneys are concerned with, while leaving law abiding knife owners alone.
 
Joined
Feb 21, 2001
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I believe the AKTI web page has a fairly complete history on this bill. The original was truly draconian. The prosecutors of one county were the entire moving force behind this, and the local police organizations. Sorry, can't remember which county.

I considered joining AKTI a few months ago, and came here to learn what the outfit was about. First off, you should know that only members who contribute $2K per year have voting rights in AKTI. Can you say manufacturers? For one, I'd think Kershaw would have joined the fight, or attempted to influence the wording, but they may have simply been relying upon their chosen fighter -- AKTI.

While I value the contribution and participation of law enforcement members of the forums, I think that as a "group" LE is one of the prime movers behind many such legilative efforts. I have a great deal of difficulty believing that the police will suddenly have a much more safe job should this bill pass as written, but an awful lot of law-abiding, pro law enforcement citizens are going to be greatly injured by it. Methinks that maybe some sort of efforts to tell the LEO types to buzz off in such areas may need to occur.

Meanwhile, am not joining AKTI. It appears they really wimped out on this one.

------------------
Asi es la vida

Bugs
 

Jim March

Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider
Joined
Oct 7, 1998
Messages
3,018
A comment here: I know who Johnny is, I've known him for years in the gun-rights movement. He is indeed a lawyer, and published author on gun laws. His written materials are used as the basis for CCW training in four counties in California that issue permits widely and fairly to the best of their abilities.

He's not using his full name, so I won't - but you can take it to the bank that if in his opinion ATKI's statements in the legislative intent records add up to "we're going to ban snapopens", that's how the courts are going to see it.

There IS an easy alternative that we can support.

Under current gun laws, there's a set of explicit crimes that revoke one's ability to own a gun, either permanently in the case of felons or for 10 years or 5 years for violent misdemeanors of various types...the 10 year variants are mostly weapon-attack related.

So what we do is, we take that whole structure and apply it to street knife carry, junking PC653k completely.

Hmmm. Let's see if I can craft a first draft of such a critter right here, for commentary:

---------------
Knife Violence Reduction Act Of 2001

1) This bill replaces PC653k completely.

2) The purpose of this bill is to ban the street carry of any knife with a blade greater than 2" if the person carrying has a criminal record.

3) To that end, we hereby establish that any crime that would deprive somebody of their right to possess or purchase a handgun under California's laws, also causes that person to be subject to a ban on the carry of knives with a blade length greater than 2", for the same length of time that gun purchase rights are restricted - 5 or 10 years depending on the misdemeanor, or life for felonies (except for juveniles, see section 6).

4) The restriction on knife carry for such persons will not be linked explicitly to age. As an example, all persons under the age of 21 cannot purchase a handgun; that alone will not strip them of cutlery carry rights under this provision. As a second example, a juvenile age 16 convicted of a violent misdemeanor would come under the provisions of this cutlery carry ban, despite being too young to otherwise buy a gun.

5) Exceptions:

a) An exception shall be made for folding knives that are part of a "multi-tool" built around a pliers frame or "classic Swiss Army knife", so long as the blade is less than 3" AND there is no one-handed-opening mechanism (thumbhole, thumbstud or functional equivelent) or spring-loaded mechanism on the blade. [Sidenote from Jim: that means no carry (by a restricted person!) of a Leatherman Wave but a Gerber Multiplier with it's more complex opening sequence is OK.]

b) An exception shall be made for legitimate work-related knife carry/use, as long as a knife greater than 2" in length can be reasonably shown as significantly more useful than a smaller knife. "Opening cardboard boxes" can be done with a sub-2" blade, but meat-cutting at a butcher shop reasonably cannot. Knives carried by restricted persons under this exception must be OPENLY carried.

c) An "outdoors exception" shall apply when engaged in tradition outdoor activities such as fishing, hunting, boating, camping and similar by restricted persons. Folders carried under this exception shall be limited to 4" and fixed blades to 6" for persons restricted; blades shall also be limited to single-edge and folders carried under this exception must not be spring-loaded or designed as "gravity knives" or "Bali-Song/Butterfly" configurations. Blades must be in a locked container or trunk or similarly inaccessable while being transported to such activities by restricted persons. Knives carried by restricted persons under this exception must be OPENLY carried.

d) An "emergency exception" is allowed if a restricted person obtains, carries or uses a knife during an emergency, if the purpose is for some reason OTHER than weapons use, and protects life or property or both. Examples: cutting brush from areas near one's property ahead of a fire with a machete or similar, to eliminate fuel for the fire, shall not result in prosecution. Neither would obtaining and using a knife to cut away seatbelts after a vehicular accident.

6) Restoration of juvenile carry rights: for juveniles who lose their knife carry rights under this provision through juvenile commission of a felony, cutlery carry rights shall be restored at age 25 assuming a clean adult record. For juveniles that lose carry rights as result of a misdemeanor, knife carry rights shall be restored at age 21, barring additional legal problems as a legal adult of 18 or older. If the crime is severe enough that the judicial system ordered a sub-18 juvenile "tried as an adult" and a conviction results, the court can lengthen the period of knife carry restrictions beyond these age limits, at the discretion of the sentencing Judge or the Judge that presides over the jury's sentencing decision.

7) Penalties: carry of a prohibited knife by a restricted person shall be a misdemeanor on the first offense if the person lost their carry rights as a result of a "five year class" misdemeanor, a "wobbler" misdemeanor/felony if the person lost rights as a result of a 10-year class misdemeanor, and a felony if rights were lost due to a felony.

8) Automotive carry: persons prohibited from carry may not carry in their automobile in a fashion that allows ready access to a prohibited knife under their control.
--------------

Jim again, speaking normally
smile.gif
. Medusaoblongata had some of these ideas in EMail to me, and they're damned good stuff.

This is the answer, and it's what ATKI should have offered in return. It would bar 80% or more of the dumb punk gangbangers from carry, and put the other 20% on notice that their BS comes at a price.

Comments/corrections/additions welcome!

Jim

(Some minor edits, title fixed, the meaning of the multiplier exception in 5A has been clarified to mean "restricted people only", and I've added the open-carry requirement in 5B and 5C.)

[This message has been edited by Jim March (edited 06-02-2001).]
 
Joined
May 26, 1999
Messages
1,964
Hmm... interesting stuff. I think you all bring up some good points and have thoughtful ideas.

Unfortunately, there are very few people who carry knives, and of those people, there are surprisingly few who care about the laws that may affect them. Any kind of organization that's formed to represent knife owners will probably be woefully underfunded.

I agree that knife manufacturers don't necessarily represent the interests of knife owners, but without their financial contributions, we realistically can't expect to get anything done. It would be great if we could start an organization made up exclusively of knife owners, but that hasn't happened and I don't think it will happen. Plus, if such an organization existed, you'd have to wonder how effective it could be politically.

If people don't like the new language in the bill, that's certainly understandable. I don't think anyone here wants the law to change in any way. However, keep in mind that people here weren't privy to the debates that went on between the AKTI and the CDAA. I think we could assume that the AKTI carefully considered the language and probably looked at several different versions before they found one they were willing to endorse. I'm also guessing that AKTI has already proposed many alternatives to the current language in negotiations, but has been rebuffed by the CDAA.

I agree that we need to get someone from the AKTI in here to share their thoughts.

------------------
Cerulean

"The hairy-armed person who figured out how to put an edge on a suitable rock made it possible for us to be recognizably human in the first place." - J.K.M.
 
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Messages
2,257
Jim, excellent work. A few thoughts: You didn't mention that actual switchblades will be legal. I understand why, but I wonder if, if the people who need to be convinced to buy this, notice that, they will still support your proposed bill. Have something ready to say in case they do notice or bring it up, beginning with somthing to the effect that an honest, nonviolent citizen will be no more inclined to hurt someone if their pocket knfe opens with a spring, etc... and, if that doesn't cut it, as an emergency measure, an additional section stating something like, "no one other than law enforcement, military, and emergency personell can carry on his or her person a switchblade knife. A switchblade knife is defined as a knife having a blade over two inches, the blade or blades of which are released by the force of a spring which is activated by pressing a button or lever on the handle" and keep it folded up in your pocket, just in case they won't buy your bill without it. While your proposed bill is a dream come true, we have to be prepared for the possibility that we won't get it that good. What if this bill could replace 12020 as well? Let it stand as is, and show a 1.5" neck knife like this one
http://www.bladeart.com/images/DCP_0088.jpg
and explain how the person wearing it, under current law, becomes a felon if they button up their jacket. Getting around 12020 would be a godsend. If we can't get around 12020, we need to address the relationship between 12020 and 653k or its replacement, and I'm not sure how that would work under your proposed bill. They would be more likely to accept this if, not only the AKTI, but also law enforcement backed it. I don't know how feasible it would be to get the CDAA to approve it first, or otherwise at least get written support from a number of LEO's. Call it the Knife Violence Reduction Act. If not in the bill explicitly, then in the explanation/justification for it, explain explicitly that criminals are using knives because they can't legally carry or buy guns, and this bill would stop those same people from carrying knives as well. You may (or may not) also want to restrict carry for those who are currently on probation/parole - it's an idea, I don't know if it's a good one or not. Jim, you also want to realize that we can expect stricter gun laws in the future, including possibly lengthening the 5 & 10 year time limits, I don't know if this matters but it may carry over. How does all this sound?


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Jason aka medusaoblongata
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"Is not giving a need? Is not receiving mercy?" - Thus Spoke Zarathustra
"Cutting his throat is only a momentary pleasure and is bound to get you talked about." - Lazarus Long
"Knowledge is not made for understanding; it is made for cutting." - Michel Foucault
 

Jim March

Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider
Joined
Oct 7, 1998
Messages
3,018
I actually meant to call it the "Knife Violence Reduction Act" but I did a typo.

smile.gif


As to the relationship with 12020: if you think about it, that really doesn't change. This completely new PC653k specifies that NON-restricted people can carry any dang folder they want to - and under 12020, what's legal under 653k can be concealed.

So what we've just done is made concealed street-carry of a true switchblade legal for a non-criminal.

We haven't changed the open-carry rules on fixed blades and we may not want to! Consider the LA knife carry rules banning open carry of anything bigger than 3". Right now, that local law (widely copied among SoCal cities such as Glendale, etc) doesn't apply to a concealed Sifu.

Now with the above radical re-write of 653k in place, we have legal concealed carry of a 4" or greater auto in LA. With luck, that'll "slip below their radar".

Problem: if we try and legalize concealed carry of big fixed blades, cops are gonna freak out. Sorry, that's just how it is...that would be too much, too soon. We can get that later as a by-product of CCW maybe, once we have CCW reformed to at least shall-issue we can try and get "unlimited cutlery rights" with CCW permits (all the way out to cane-swords!) because of the background check.

What else...the work and outdoor recreation exceptions in 5B and 5C should be altered to specify open-carry, I think?

Finally, as to "we just legalized switchblades", well hell, they were banned originally based on paranoia surrounding "West Side Story" and similar. I see no reason NOT to switch the focus to "people" versus "hardware". It's worth a try, anyhow, although I can see how having a fallback position might be wise.

Jim
 
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