Official Response to Article in Sept Tactical Knives

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Man, I just got the latest Tactical Knives in the mail yesterday and read an option column that basically made the point that AKTI is for the industry and not knife users. Since AKTI doesn't appear to have been given a chance to respond in that issue, I thought BF might be a good place to do that. As an end user, I am curious to see the response.
 
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I do not officially speak for AKTI but I personally consider that opinion off base.

The Knifemakers Guild and heads of Major Knife Companies have taken on a Leadership role in AKTI at their expense.

IMHO The only reason "Knife Users" are not well represented on the AKTI Board of Regents is that they are not prepared to make the commitment that the current Board Members have made. Some people complain that AKTI was structured to lock Knife Users out by giving Voting privileges to those who commit $2000.00 for a Silver Membership. Many dedicated Knife Nuts spend more than that on a single knife from a Custom Maker.

I also haven't heard any of the Ambassador Members request or suggest an elected representative with full voting privileges.

The crux of my argument is don't criticize AKTI for not representing ordinary Knife Users if you are not engaged in trying to work with AKTI in a meaningful manner.

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AKTI Member No. A000370
 

Jim March

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Check the other recent threads in this forum.

Jim
 
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by SDouglas:
The crux of my argument is don't criticize AKTI for not representing ordinary Knife Users if you are not engaged in trying to work with AKTI in a meaningful manner. </font>

Why should someone like myself give them money for Membership when they are actively engaged in writing laws with Legislators and Law Enforcement Personnel that evinces a design to ban a whole class of knives?

That whole class of knives being "flickable?"

All pocket knives with very few exceptions are "flickable."

This is absurd...

So...someone at AKTI cannot take a retractable blade razor knife and stand up and give that thing a push and have the blade shoot out instantly and proclaim that a lethal instrument?

Eh?

You cannot get the simple concept across?

We're doomed...



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Usual Suspect
Ipsa scientia potestas est aut disce aut discede
Some of my Knives and other neat things
 

CJ Buck

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Have not read the article yet. I will respond when I return from Blade Show.

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CJ Buck
Buck Knives, Inc.
AKTI Member #PR00003


 
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I agree 100% - don't criticize if you're not in the ring. But what about those of us (old AKTI Member #A000831) who joined in the beginning, only to become disillusioned due to a lack of activity in the AKTI forum and almost nothing tangible in return? I didn't renew because I wasn't seeing anything to show that my money was well spent.

Wish I was one of those financially capable of spending $2,000 on a single knife - I might think differently - I'm not.

I don't blame AKTI's main contributors from taking the representation approach they have. It's in their immediate, best interest. In their shoes, I'd do the exact same thing. Is it in my best interest? Sure, indirectly, but it's not worth $35/yr - yet. At some point, though, they'll need to ask themselves, "How much more of an impact could we have with a large, grassroots network?"

I've read the "AKTI Project Proposal Form" that was posted earlier this week. Rather than "As a dues-paying member of AKTI", it should read, "As a dues-paying member above Ambassodor level of AKTI". Is AKTI really going to use a cost/time/impact/effort estimate from an average guy to determine whether a suggested project is worthy? I've been a software developer for over a decade, and even with training, such estimates are time consuming to make and require specific knowledge to be reliable. And they fail often due to unforeseen and uncontrollable factors. While I can do a competent job within software development, I know that I can't do so in AKTI's arena of potential projects. Does that exclude me from making suggestions, were I to renew my membership? While the intent of that form is admirable, and hopefully will get good results, I found to be alienating.

After reading the "Legislative Action Plan", it sounds like they're heading in the right direction. I wish AKTI well, and hope that it grows into an organization for all of us. Right now, it just isn't a good fit for me. I sincerely hope it will be in the future.

[This message has been edited by Codeman (edited 06-06-2001).]
 
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I believe that AKTI has repeatedly expressed a desire for inputs from the Ambassador members in the past.

I have found the members of the Board very responsive to my Emails with questions or suggestions. I have been disappointed with the inactivity on this forum. I would have liked to have had more discussion of the plans for California discussed here.

Don,

I am afraid that I have to fundamentally disagree with you on California.

You seem to believe that AKTI sold the Knife Community out to District Attornies and Law Enforcement.

I believe that AKTI approached those groups when they were on the verge of eliminating California's One Hand Exemption and negotiated a reasonable compromise.

The challenge that AKTI and the Knife Community now face is making sure that it is clearly stated that the Legislative Intent is to continue to protect One Hand Knives that are not Designed to be Gravity Knives. I believe that we should be able to win support from the District Attornies and Law Enforcement in making this clear since we have taken a cooperative rather than adversarial stance.

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AKTI Member No. A000370
 
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by SDouglas:
The challenge that AKTI and the Knife Community now face is making sure that it is clearly stated that the Legislative Intent is to continue to protect One Hand Knives that are not Designed to be Gravity Knives. </font>

Appeasement and acquiescence is only going to go so far until the cold, hard, reality of things comes crashing in Mr. Douglas. That reality being, the Gravity Knife was not banned because it could be opened by Gravity. The Switchblade was not banned because it could be opened by a spring.

They were banned because they could be opened with one hand. You are looking at a symptom instead of the disease, with all due respect.

In 1958, were there designs that utilized thumb studs, discs or holes? Not to my knowledge. If they existed, they were obscure.

In the 70s, when I was a child, there was a belt sheath designed for the Buck 110 Folder and similar size lockbacks called, "The Sting" which allowed the knife to be drawn in the open position and locked, ready for use.

Then the "Flicket's" came out that clamped onto the blade of a large folding knife to operate it with one hand. I believe those came out in the 70s as well.

All of these innovations came about because people wanted a way of having a handy knife that had the ability to be opened with one hand. That seems like a "no-brainer," but apparently, very few people are "getting it."

<font color=red>"Necessity is the Mother of Invention."</font>

So, what is going to happen next time around when the Ventura or L.A. County Sheriff starts whining about "flick knives" and it fits the criteria of the law that AKTI has had a hand in writing?

Look at your own words...

<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by SDouglas:
"I believe that we should be able to win support from the District Attornies and Law Enforcement in making this clear since we have taken a cooperative rather than adversarial stance."</font>

Will AKTI be "adversarial" then? Or will they "cooperate" once again and be the perceived "Good Guys?"

You think my comments are unreasonable, unwarranted and adversarial Mr. Douglas, that is simply not so. It is unreasonable to be a Law Enforcement Official and simply want everything you find offensive or threatening controlled, banned, legislated against and ultimately confiscated...

Is it "unreasonable, unwarranted or unjustified" to take to the California Legislature a rough estimate of how many Spydercos, Benchmades and other knives that have been sold in California and then compare that with relatively few incidents of Gang or other criminal use [by comparison] and come to the conclusion that folding knives that are designed to be opened with one hand are not even a blip on the radar screen when it comes to crime?

The parallel is in the Gun Control Debate. All of this convoluted reasoning and pained wringing of hands over what we are going to do to protect "The Children" from other children that are armed. We have children being not only suspended or expelled from school, but arrested for drawing a picture of a firearm...it is a hysteria, a contagion born of paranoia that we focus on the very few children who have used firearms in school...while conveniently forgetting about the literally millions of children over the years that had access to firearms and did not use them.

And the same disturbing trend can be revealed any time weapons prohibitions are discussed. Why focus on the isolated incidents when there are millions of these knives owned in California that are clearly not being used in crime in any way whatsoever?

You and many other people are going to wake up one day to the sad reality that the opposition does not really care about the force of gravity or a spring, what they care about is the ability to open the folder with one hand to begin with.

So, take that Legislation and run with it! And when some other person comes forward and says, "These things are a threat to my Officers and a Public Menace," where will you go then?

The answer to this is...to launch a campaign to legitimize ALL one-hand openers. I understand that is going to take some time. However, I see no other way out of this mess.

I believe the answer is to have a law that clearly states if you use a knife in a criminal manner, you will go to prison, period.

And there should be an exemption for using a knife in Self-defense, that's really popular too, isn't it?

But if you do not have the exemption for Self-defense in there, you are going to have people arrested and sent to prison for defending themselves against criminal attack.

These are very unpopular things to talk about, aren't they?

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Usual Suspect
Ipsa scientia potestas est aut disce aut discede
Some of my Knives and other neat things

[This message has been edited by Don Rearic (edited 06-07-2001).]
 

Jim March

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Well one bit of good news: self defense with lethal force of any type, when you are in legitimate fear of "death or great bodily injury" from criminal attack.

We do NOT need to put in any additional support for that concept into any version of any proposed law here.

California's standards on such self defense are actually quite good. There's no "duty to retreat", for example. Things can still go wrong in court, God only knows, but that's a matter of bad lawyers and sheeple juries screwing up.

With that exception, I agree with Don. The version of the "criminal control" bill that replaces PC653k and hence legalizes just about everything for honest folk is our best shot at a near-term solution.

Jim
 
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First off let me be clear that I do support Jim's proposed alternate legislation and I would encourage AKTI to support similar legislation across the country as long as there is clear wording making all knive legal for Non-Criminals.

I do not believe that AKTI should try to replace the Bill that they have already negotiated at this point in the process.

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Look on the bright side, if the Ventura Co. Sheriff misses the CNN story about the mass murder in a school, by a Kitchen Knife Wielding Attacker...hell, maybe Californians will be able to keep their Kitchen Cutlery this year too.
 
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Don Rearic:



And the same disturbing trend can be revealed any time weapons prohibitions are discussed. Why focus on the isolated incidents when there are millions of these knives owned in California that are clearly not being used in crime in any way whatsoever?

I believe the answer is to have a law that clearly states if you use a knife in a criminal manner, you will go to prison, period.


</font>

Don
Perfectly said.Why anyone would think different is beyond me
Bob
 

CJ Buck

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To be honest I was a little taken aback by mitch's letter and the public forum he chose. To summarize he felt that:

1. AKTI was of no value to him cause he could not influence decisions

2. AKTI leadership was gullible in their dealings with Law Enforcement

3. AKTI is not open to any actions not a pet concern of AKTI leadership

4. I did not understand his 4th point

5. AKTI has not taken a strong enough stand on legalizing switchblades.

For 1, I am a life member with the NRA and I do not have much impact on their legislative strategies except to send more money when they ask for it. Second, I think this is in regards to the California situation and I will cover in a bit. Third, people is where we get all our input from everyday we open for business. The concerns the regents bring to board meetings come out of the marketplace. Lastly on the switchblade issue. This one is too large to deal with here. I will start a whole thread for it once I get some feedback from the board of regents.

Let me get a little transparent here on the California issue coming up.

Jim and Don, you have made some great points and no one here is arguing with you that criminalizing behavior instead of objects is far and away the best long term solution for protecting the safety of citizens without sacrificing personal freedoms.

With that said. I will be flying up to Sacramento to voice AKTI's support for SB 274 and I guarantee for all of us that it would be better if there was no "opposition" from the knife industry. Squabbles in a committee hearing attract attention and that is exactly what we do not want here.

This is almost done and it can fade out of sight and out of mind. This bill does not "create a mess" in California.

From here we can begin to strategize how to bring about the legislative restructuring that Jim and Don have laid out in numerous posts on multiple threads.

That is a truly daunting task no doubt about it. I have deleted a dozen attempts to put this into perspective but they all sounded like whining...

Respectfully submitted IMHO...

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CJ Buck
Buck Knives, Inc.
AKTI Member #PR00003


 

Jim March

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CJ, who is "mitch"? Is that the author of the Tactical Knives article, or is that a typo reference to me?

Second, sorry CJ, but you were alerted to the possibilities of a "criminal control" version of this bill over a year ago, and as far as we can tell, you never raised the issue with the DA or LEO people pushing this thing.

We've asked you multiple times whether or not any sort of "criminal control alternative" was ever raised, and what the objections were from the cops and DAs. You've ignored us.

We have no choice now but to ignore you. There damn well WILL be opposition on the 19th, because the bill as currently crafted is a lot worse than you seem to think. You haven't lived with the street reality of cops that are allowed to decide at will if your cutlery is illegal.

It sucks. A lot. We are not going back to those days without a fight.

Jim
 
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Jim,

Unfortunately, this is a done deal.

When anything that can be "flicked" open has been banned, they WILL come after the rest of the pocket knives that have the capability to be opened with one hand using whatever thumb opener you can imagine.

It will happen. Someone will feel "threatened" by their presence, and they will launch an assault on these knives as well.

It will be too late then to do anything about it as AKTI should have realized what they are dealing with from the start.

The greatest weapon that Government and some people in Law Enforcement have is one of trust.

We are supposed to "trust" them, we are supposed to "trust" that they will not come after more firearms when "Assault Weapons" have been "controlled."

Same with knives.

They have lied so many times, only a damned fool trusts a Politician or a Law Enforcement Official when it comes to Weapons Prohibitions.

They will lie and hide their true intentions to get every single stepping stone they desire closer to what their goal is, disarming everyone, yes, even of POCKETknives.

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Usual Suspect
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Some of my Knives and other neat things
 
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I visited the California District Attourneys Association website and found very little helpful information on the subject.

www.cdaa.org

The only reference I found to this issue is their definition of what this new law will do:

"This legislation would clarify an exemption to California's switchblade knife statute to ensure that knives which are functionally switchblades remain in violation of Penal Code section 653(k)."

One thing is pretty clear. As far as they are concerned a knife that is "functionally" a switchblade doesn't have to have a spring assisted opening device. Anyone can see that "functionally" our one handed openers do the same job as a switchblade. This ain't over.


One other thing to point out....as far as the CDAA is concerned these knives are in violation of the law now. The language of their statement says they want these knives to "remain" illegal. Its clear that any knife that opens rapidly like a switchblade is a target. Their opinion is that the current law is being misapplied by juries and judges who are going by the letter of the law as opposed to what they consider the "spirit" of the law. Why are people going to trial now for weapons that obviously are not switchblades or gravity knives and getting off? Because its not the design of the knife that makes a knife a switchblade in the eyes of LEO's and DA's...its the potential speed of opening.

That's why you'll see this new law's nasty little baby brother come down the pipe before too long. Its very simple. They aren't getting everything they want here so it doesn't end with this law.


[This message has been edited by Roj Avon (edited 06-12-2001).]
 
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Smith and Wesson thought they could play fast and loose with bad legislation without any consequences. They were wrong. If the knife industry backs bad legislation, it does so at it`s own peril. It`s heartbreaking to see another company whose products I use and respect end up on the wrong side of the very important issue of individual rights.

Please don`t cave to regressive, restrictive lawmakers!!! It`s bad for us and it`s bad for you.
 
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Roj - The public areas of the CDAA website has but the small reference to SB274, that you mentioned in your post.

The gang-related private password protected area has futher discussion on SB274. I cannot disclose those contents, but suffice it to say, your conclusions regarding CDAA on dead on.

As a Concerned Californian, many thanks to an Texan for keeping an wary eye out west.

Like you said, it won't stop with SB274 or be contained within Kalifornia.

 
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