What type of Knife Legislation should AKTI support?

Discussion in 'American Knife & Tool Institute' started by SDouglas, Feb 18, 2000.

  1. SDouglas


    Jan 6, 1999
    I believe that if we don't want the AKTI to be perceived as extreme and unreasonable by the Non-Knife public we should consider this question seriously.

    IMHO Simply saying "That knife law is bad" will not be as effective as saying "This knife law will be as effective and avoid the following problems".

    Are there any examples of Good Knife Laws?

    I would suggest the following general guidelines for trying to develop a reasonable model law that the AKTI could support.

    The public (Legislature) does have a valid public safety interest in controlling the carry of Concealed Weapons.

    Prevention of violence is preferable to punishment after the fact.

    The law should be specific and clear avoiding the reliance on discretion that we frequently find fault with.

    The law must be enforcable.

    AKTI Member No. A000370
  2. Jim March

    Jim March KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 7, 1998
    Quite simple: end all knife laws.

    Look, gun control is based on the idea that you can end criminal gun ownership. It's flawed, because they can be made locally or smuggled in no matter what...but it at least sounds plausible.


    Follow? It can't even be done in prison. Where's Jailhack? He'll tell you all about "shivs". A knife is too simple to make out of literal scrap junk.

    On the street, any crook who wants a knife will get one, and carry it. Therefore knife laws can *only* disarm the law-abiding, and are therefore morally repugnant.

  3. SDouglas


    Jan 6, 1999

    I understand and agree with your arguments.

    However, They don't fly with the General Non Knife Public. People like my wife, my minister and my mother who say that we are just being unreasonable extremists trying to ignore the violence that is occurring. They feel that SOMETHING has to be done even if it can't totally resolve the problem.

    I am suggesting that we try to develope a model knife law that protects our rights and is just as effective as the bad laws that we complain about at preventing knife related crimes.

    AKTI Member No. A000370
  4. Brian_Turner


    May 13, 1999
    I think that weapons laws should be based upon actions rather than on some attempt to define what physical characteristics make one knife "dangerous" as opposed to any other knife.

    Restrict what I can do with the article, but not my possession of the article itself.

    AKTI Member #A000832

    "That which does not kill me just postpones the inevitable."
  5. Dan Lawson

    Dan Lawson

    Jan 23, 2000
    This is an excellent idea/ topic . A repeal of all existing knife laws is may be the ideal , but it simply will not occur . We should be in a position to suggest workable laws which impose minimal ,if any ,restrictions on law abiding people .
  6. CJ Buck

    CJ Buck Moderator Moderator

    Apr 15, 1999
    Knife law, as with many of the game management laws, is based on emotion and not always on science. It is also strengthened by an ignorant or fearful majority condoning restriction of a minority.

    AKTI's focus is on giving reasonable alternatives to laws governing possession.

    Law enforcement has a tough job to do and we do not want to make that any more dangerous than it already is but the vital utility that knives bring to us all. It is too important to "do without" or "sacrifice".

    Legislators are elected officials and need logic to go against something that law enforcement says will make their jobs easier.

    In california we asked why the laws were coming (namely changes in switchblade and dirk and dagger description) and suggested changes that solved the particular issue without causing more pain then neccessary.

    CJ Buck
    Buck Knives, Inc.
    AKTI Member #PR00003

  7. SDouglas


    Jan 6, 1999
    I am certainly not interested in sponsoring legislation that will impede my ability to legally carry the knives that I love.

    However, I do believe that AKTI will be stronger in this argument if we can propose a law or package of laws that will both protect out rights and address the concerns that the laws we oppose are trying to address.

    A sample package that might be a reasonable starting point is:

    1. It is illegal to carry concealed any knife with a blade length greater than 3.5 inches measured from the Blade/Handle junction to the tip without either a Concealed Carry Weapons (CCW) or a Concealed Carry Knife (CCK) permit.

    2. A Concealed Carry Knife (CCK) permit Shall be issued to any adult requesting or to any minor who's parent or legal guardian requests unless one of the following three criteria are met.
    a. The requestor or minor has a Felony Conviction.
    b. The requestor or minor has been determined to be a threat to themselves
    or others as a result of Mental Disease or Defect.
    c. There is a Restraining Order in effect
    against the requestor or minor to prevent acts of violence.

    3. Any person convicted of Armed Robbery or Assault with a Deadly Weapon shall receive a minimum scentence of 10 years in prison without possibility of parole.

    I realize that there are probably a number of issues that would have to be worked out before we could support a package like this but I think it is worth considering.

    The areas that I recognize right off are defining "Concealed Carry" and preventing the package from being broken up dropping the "Shall Issue" portion.

    AKTI Member No. A000370
  8. cerulean


    May 26, 1999
    Good thread, SDouglas. But your proposed law sounds too conservative and complicated to me. It's conservative in that I like a longer blade and find one between 4" and 5" to be most usefull. It's also complicated in regards to the concealed carry permits and the multiple qualifiers that go along with them.

    I would propose that carrying a knife with a blade over 5 inches long be illegal. The term "blade" should be specifically defined and would apply to folders and fixed blades as well as concealed and open carry. This law would not apply if the knife is used for hunting or fishing, or if it's carried in a private home, vehicle, or work setting.

    Most knife killings are commited with chef's knives and butcher knives, many of which are over 5" long, so this law could still appear to protect people from knives. Plus this law doesn't require CW permits and all the hassles that go along with them.

    I agree that the ultimate goal should be to end all knife laws, but I don't think that will be possible. However, I think the above law would be passable and workable for most people.


    "Every day our newspapers report numerous muggings and attacks, most of them involving knives. Can we sit by complacently and ignore the bloodshed in our streets?" -James J. Delany, 1958
  9. CAL


    Aug 3, 1999
    Personally, I would agree to any law that delt with the "intent" of the user as opposed to the knife itself. If a drunk in a bar gets in a fight and pulls a CASE Peanut, then that knife should be considered a deadly weapon.
  10. Stryver


    Jun 5, 1999
    I am all for concealed laws. I would like to be able to get a concealed carry knife permit, or extend a CCW to knives as well, but that is not necessary to me. Alaska law authorizes the carry of a "Normal Pocketknife" concealed, or carrying concealed if it is needed for the lawful activity being done (Primarily aimed at hunters and fishermen wearing outdoor gear.) I would be willing to see the concealed carry of fixed blades banned, and the concealed carry of all those 'scary' features, such as switchblades and gravity knives. I dislike that last part, but would be willing to live with it. I would prefer not to have a length law on folders, but am convinced that as long as the concealed part was the only part banned, I could live with it. I do not need to carry a 5 inch folder in my pocket. In fact, that would be less than comfortable. If I am in a place I need a 5 inch folder, I can carry it on my belt.

    So, all in all, I dislike 'banning' knives. I have no problem with outlawing concealed carry of 'other than normal pocketknives' as long as normal pocketknife is defined somewhere. I can live with length laws, though I would rather not. And I would be very much for better enforcement of 'brandishing' laws, and upgrading penalties for people caught doing something else with a concealed blade.

  11. SDouglas


    Jan 6, 1999
    My goals with the legislative package I proposed were to:

    1. Clearly define what is legal and what is not so that anyone can understand the law. The length limit can be negotiated and a good definition of Concealed Carry needs to be included.

    2. Make it easy for any Law Abiding Citizen who has not demonstrated a Violence Risk to obtain a permit that would allow ANY knife to be carried.

    3. Deter Violent Behavior by making the penalty too great to risk.

    I believe that if we could get the ENTIRE package enacted that we would win on several fronts.

    AKTI Member No. A000370
  12. cerulean


    May 26, 1999
    Hmm. I guess I really just don't understand the point of concealed carry laws. I mean, what makes a weapon more dangerous if it's carried concealed? I admit that I can see some justification for this type of law with guns, but it seems illogical with knives.

    This is especially true with large fixed blades. If you're carrying one to scare people, you'll want to carry it openly anyways. Plus, it will be easier to draw if it's not concealed.

    I really can't see a reason to carry a large fixed blade concealed or openly; it's just so uncomfortable. Why not just carry a gun? And if you want a back-up for the gun, carry another gun!

    We should try to do away with outlawing concealed carry of certain types of knives; it just doesn't make sense. It's like outlawing swords or something: how many people would carry swords anyways if it wasn't illegal? Probably not too many. Of course, a couple hundred years ago, large knives were carried frequently. But now, it seems that these laws prohibit a behavior which very rarely takes place and doesn't pose any threat even when it does.

    I agree though that knife laws should rely primarily on the enforcement of "brandishing" type laws.

    [This message has been edited by cerulean (edited 02-26-2000).]
  13. Dan Lawson

    Dan Lawson

    Jan 23, 2000
    The issue of " concealmement " has lost validity , if it was ever valid . Laws prohibiting concealed weapons developed in the !8th century . When weapons were commonly carried . The theory against concealment was that the individual ( with a concealed weapon ) was falsely presenting himself as unarmed . Perhaps the reasoning was that someone with a concealed weapon could provoke a confrontation and then respond in an un- expected way . Nowadays , very few carry weapons . ( By the way , weapon and Knife are not synonymous ).Similarly knife and handgun are not synonymous . None of us should need permisson ( a permit or license ) to carry a tool even one which may have suitability for self - defense . A pocketknife is essentially by definition concealed when caried in the intended manner . Let us not be too quick to surrender rights to the Gov't. or to give up tools such as fixed blades in return for a status symbol license . Let us focus on what a free society legimately needs to prohibit in terms of objects and how a failure to abide lawful behavior should be addressed / punished .

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