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What’s up with switchblade knife legislation?(WA)
Seattle Gun Rights Examiner ^ | 16 January, 2012 | Dave Workman

Posted on 01/17/2012 1:47:43 PM PST by marktwain

LAS VEGAS — There’s a new piece of legislation in Olympia aimed at defining a “switchblade” knife that contains what appears to be a contradictory, or at least confusing, definition that has some Second Amendment activists puzzled.

This column will have a chance to speak to several of them during the next four days here at the annual Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show. They’re knife makers, whose wares will be just as much on display as new guns and other gear.

Senate Bill 6179 says this about switchblades:

"Switchblade knife" means any knife with a blade that is automatically released by a spring mechanism or other mechanical device, or any knife having a blade which opens, or falls, or is ejected into position by the force of gravity, or by an outward, downward, or centrifugal thrust or movement. A knife that contains a spring, detent, or other mechanism designed to create a bias toward closure of the blade and that requires physical exertion applied to the blade by hand, wrist, or arm to overcome the bias toward closure to assist in opening the knife is not a switchblade knife.

Presumably, this means that knives from various Oregon-based manufacturers that are generically called “assisted opening” knives do not fall under the switchblade umbrella. But at the top of the previous paragraph, we have knives with blades that are automatically released by a spring mechanism or other mechanical device, being called switchblades. Then knives that contain springs, detents or “other” mechanisms are not switchblades.

Perhaps the part of this legislation that makes it bad is that it exempts law enforcement, firefighters and military personnel while on the job.

What makes these folks special?

(Excerpt) Read more at examiner.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Government; News/Current Events; US: Washington
KEYWORDS: banglist; knife; switchblade; wa
The trend in the country is to eliminate the old irrational legislation against various kinds of knives. Legislation based on fairytales sold by Hollywood.

Knives are also arms protected by the Second Amendment.

1 posted on 01/17/2012 1:47:49 PM PST by marktwain
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To: marktwain

Sounds redundant, Switchblade Knife, Pistol Gun.


2 posted on 01/17/2012 1:49:47 PM PST by ImJustAnotherOkie (zerogottago)
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To: marktwain

Legislatures gone mad.


3 posted on 01/17/2012 1:50:02 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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To: marktwain

Back in the 80’s I was reading the Florida statutes regarding concealed weapons. Fortunately these old laws have been superseded or repealed.

I was shocked to see “Buck Knife” listed as a prohibited weapon. I thought that was clearly a badly crafted law as it technically would have included all “Buck” brand knives.


4 posted on 01/17/2012 1:51:36 PM PST by yarddog
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To: marktwain
"Switchblade knife" means any knife with a blade that is automatically released by a spring mechanism or other mechanical device, or any knife having a blade which opens, or falls, or is ejected into position by the force of gravity, or by an outward, downward, or centrifugal thrust or movement.

Well, that describes just about all folding pocket knifes.

5 posted on 01/17/2012 1:56:21 PM PST by SoldierDad (Proud dad of an Army Soldier currently on his way home from Afghanistan!)
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To: marktwain

I really, really, really, really, don’t understand why spring loaded knives are so dangerous. Did thousands die in the old days in the brief span between pressing a button and opening the blade with your fingers? Did it make enough of a difference to warrant the attention of lawmakers? Or are we just as paranoid and impressionable as those in the long past who went after witches and satanic ritualistic murderers.


6 posted on 01/17/2012 1:59:21 PM PST by Tublecane
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To: Tublecane

I remember when those old gangster movies often showed a guy with black oily hair, pulling out a switchblade and carving up someone.

That probably had a profound effect on lawmakers. The fact that it has little to do with reality doesn’t matter.


7 posted on 01/17/2012 2:02:27 PM PST by yarddog
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To: Tublecane

Then I suppose you are incapable of knowing why a pistol grip or black plastic stock make a rifle infinitely more lethal.


8 posted on 01/17/2012 2:08:09 PM PST by CrazyIvan (Obama's birth certificate was found stapled to Soros's receipt.)
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To: marktwain

The simplified explanation:

If you have to actually touch the blade to make it open, its not a switchblade. If you can make the blade open without touching the blade at all, then its a switchblade. Butterfly knives are a possible exception. They are illegal in some places and others they are not.

The reason why they can’t outlaw “spring assist” is because they haven’t figured out a way to distinguish them from a plain old ordinary pocket knife. an ordinary pocket knife is held closed by a spring. and and ordinary pocket knife is held open by a spring. Therefore, it is technically a “spring assist” also.

The whole “switchblade” idiocy needs to go away anyway. They only reason why they are illegal is because teens had a fascination with them back in the 1950s. You can take a plain old fashioned solid steel butter knife and sharpen it up real sharp and it is just as deadly as a switchblade and faster. In fact, I used to carry just such a knife. The older ones(like 75 years old or older) were of better quality steel and could be sharpened up just like a good work knife.


9 posted on 01/17/2012 2:09:49 PM PST by mamelukesabre
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To: yarddog
That's what's infuriating about these assinine laws. the original switchblade act of 1957 came about because so many "yutes" were carrying them, and were shown in movies like Rebel Without a Cause and Blackboard Jungle. Congress just HAD to act, because the knives were "scary". Gotta show the public that they "care" so much about getting "scary" things banned.

Semi-automatic guns become "assault rifles". Cigarettes become "instant killers". Trans-fats are "completely deadly". Salt is a "silent assassin". Your SUV is "destroying the planet". Switchblades make grandma uncomfortable, so they become "instruments of destruction."

10 posted on 01/17/2012 2:18:14 PM PST by boop (I hate hippies and dopeheads. Just hate them. ...Ernest Borgnine)
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To: CrazyIvan

“Then I suppose you are incapable of knowing why a pistol grip or black plastic stock make a rifle infinitely more lethal”

I understand the concept of more and less lethality. For instance, a nuclear device is deadlier than my fist, and as such I won’t object too strenuously if the government lets me have the latter and not the former. My perplexity was over whether or not the switchblade vs. regular blade lethality gap deserved the attention of legislators. Does a spring make it worse enough to warrant banning, when I can almost as easily be killed by a kitchen knife?

By the way, I don’t think pistol grips or rifle stocks ought to be banned, either.


11 posted on 01/17/2012 2:23:38 PM PST by Tublecane
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To: CrazyIvan

“Then I suppose you are incapable of knowing why a pistol grip or black plastic stock make a rifle infinitely more lethal”

By the way again, “infinitely more”? Seriously? Like, it’s so much more lethal it can’t even be measured? That’s the sort of hyperbole that drives people crazy and makes them draft laws against switchblades.


12 posted on 01/17/2012 2:32:10 PM PST by Tublecane
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To: SoldierDad

Well, that describes just about all folding pocket knifes.

Pretty much. I have a pocket knife with about a 4 1/2 inch blade that does not lock down. If I clean and oil it good, I can open it with a flick of my wrist.

I bought it here in Washington at some antique shop out on the coast and nobody ever told me it is or might be illegal.


13 posted on 01/17/2012 2:40:19 PM PST by djf (http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2801220/posts)
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To: Tublecane
" For instance, a nuclear device is deadlier than my fist"
wanna bet???
14 posted on 01/17/2012 2:41:42 PM PST by joe fonebone (Project Gunwalker, this will make watergate look like the warm up band......)
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To: marktwain
What makes these folks special?

They are government workers. Civilians should not be allowed to have anything that can be used as a weapon because it presents a potential threat to the tyrants

15 posted on 01/17/2012 2:44:43 PM PST by paul51 (11 September 2001 - Never forget)
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To: CrazyIvan
Then I suppose you are incapable of knowing why a pistol grip or black plastic stock make a rifle infinitely more lethal.

Yeah. The big dummy! Some folks. Sheesh.

16 posted on 01/17/2012 2:47:26 PM PST by houeto
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To: Tublecane

“Seriously?” No, not at all. Guess I should have marked it as such.


17 posted on 01/17/2012 2:50:35 PM PST by CrazyIvan (Obama's birth certificate was found stapled to Soros's receipt.)
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To: marktwain

How many hospital visits resulted from switchblades accidentally opening inside the owners pocket and stabbing him?


18 posted on 01/17/2012 2:54:40 PM PST by fso301
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To: marktwain
Thank you for the post. Yes you are correct that a knife (and brass knuckles) are arms and should be protected under the 2nd amendment.

However, as someone who has submitted to State scrutiny to get a CCL, this law as completely written is nuts.

As you point out it exempts public safety personnel from not only the prohibition on possessing switchblade, but now expands the laws to allow public safety personnel to “furtively carry” (i.e. concealed carry) a pistol, dirk, dagger, etc.

Another example of unintended consequences.

19 posted on 01/17/2012 2:55:17 PM PST by Robert357 (D.Rather "Hoist with his own petard!" www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1223916/posts)
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To: paul51

I have used a assisted opening knife as a firefighter and it is a Godsend when you need more hands. This does not mean that anyone else shouldn’t have one.


20 posted on 01/17/2012 2:55:46 PM PST by CrazyIvan (Obama's birth certificate was found stapled to Soros's receipt.)
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To: fso301
How many hospital visits resulted from switchblades accidentally opening inside the owners pocket and stabbing him?

This is exactly why I refuse to carry a true "switchblade" knife. Every once in a while I will bend over just right, and keys or pocket change will cause the panic button on my car keys to go off.

Now imagine what happens when a you bend over and a razor sharp blade suddenly springs out right next to your junk.

21 posted on 01/17/2012 3:19:17 PM PST by CurlyDave
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To: CurlyDave

“Now imagine what happens when a you bend over and a razor sharp blade suddenly springs out right next to your junk.”

Not much. Probably it won’t open all the way, and even if it did wouldn’t puntucre anything.


22 posted on 01/17/2012 3:30:54 PM PST by Tublecane
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To: marktwain

The goal is to create laws that allow the “Authorities” to arrest anyone. In the jurisdiction where I am at the moment you can be arrested for being “Offensively armed” if you have long fingernails.

OK, maybe that is an exaggeration...

But not by much.


23 posted on 01/17/2012 3:34:44 PM PST by Chuckster (The longer I live the less I care about what you think.)
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To: marktwain

Outlaw Liberals, Greenies and Hippies in the legislature and that will solve the problem.


24 posted on 01/17/2012 3:37:57 PM PST by Anti-Bubba182
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To: Tublecane

In the mid to late 50’s switchblades were a big deal. I had one.

I also had two Case knives, one was a beautiful yellow color with a 3” blade. It could be snapped open with a thumb nail and twist of the wrist as quickly as a switch blade and it was legal.


25 posted on 01/17/2012 3:45:08 PM PST by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 ..... Crucifixion is coming)
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26 posted on 01/17/2012 4:05:56 PM PST by RedMDer (Forward With Confidence!)
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To: marktwain

I am a big believer in one handed knives. When your left hand is trapped you can still open the knife and saw and cut your way out of trouble.

Especially necessary for sailors and others working around rope that moves, coils and snakes.


27 posted on 01/17/2012 4:22:27 PM PST by buffaloguy
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To: fso301

I would guess not too many from switchblades, since they need room to fold out before the sharpened parts would be in a position to do much harm. If they’re in a pocket, they couldn’t open all the way. Now, a stiletto in your pocket is another story...


28 posted on 01/17/2012 4:45:52 PM PST by Boogieman
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To: mamelukesabre

At least California still allows these knives. It’s ironic that butterfly knifes Are illegal because they “look scary”. I can open my SOG spring-assisted tanto knife (4” blade) faSter than a butterfly knife. I can open my Kershaw Ken Onion folders even faster, but the blades are shorter. Sometime I should open-carry my 13” Ka-Bar tanto (8” blade!) that would really freak the lefties out.


29 posted on 01/17/2012 4:56:59 PM PST by Conservative Vet
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To: marktwain

My understanding is that here in WA the “assisted openers” already do not fall under the definition of “switchblade” as defined by the law, but the law is a little vague and could be interpreted to include them. This looks like they’re trying to clarify the definition to specifically allow them.

That’s OK, so far as it goes. What they really should do is just do away with the ban on switchblades entirely. There is nothing about how a knife opens that makes it any more dangerous than any other knife. That, and the ability to open any knife with one hand is just plain safer. It’s common sense.

I have a sizeable knife collection, and many of my folders are assisted-openers. I love ‘em. My daily carry knife is a CRKT “Fire Spark” 3.6” assisted. Great knife and instantly available in a flash.


30 posted on 01/17/2012 5:00:03 PM PST by Ramius (Personally, I'd give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?)
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To: Ramius

Ooops. 3.8” not 3.6”


31 posted on 01/17/2012 5:02:29 PM PST by Ramius (Personally, I'd give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?)
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To: Tublecane
Not much. Probably it won’t open all the way, and even if it did wouldn’t puntucre anything.

Well, you can have your beliefs. I am not going to test them and find out the hard way.

32 posted on 01/17/2012 5:17:59 PM PST by CurlyDave
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To: joe fonebone; Tublecane
" For instance, a nuclear device is deadlier than my fist"

wanna bet???

Did I miss something? Is Tublecane Chuck Norris?

33 posted on 01/17/2012 5:22:59 PM PST by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
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To: Tublecane; CurlyDave
Not much. Probably it won’t open all the way, and even if it did wouldn’t puntucre anything.

I wouldn't bet money on that much less my junk. My pocket folder (no assist) partially opened in my pocket which wedged the blade tip directly against my groin. Exactly where the femoral artery is. I froze my position and verrrry carefully straightened my leg and worked two fingers into my pocket to close the blade.

The knife was fixed in position to the pocket by the clip and pulling upward on the handle would have pulled the blade into my groin. Thankfully it didn't happen while doing something requiring my thigh to move upward with the next movement (like applying the brake pedal, kneeling, taking a step up) as that also would have pushed the blade right in.

FWIW I tightened the screw that increases/decreases resistance of the blade's movement in the handle and it has never done that again. That makes it just a bit too tight to open with a flick of the wrist though.

34 posted on 01/17/2012 5:48:26 PM PST by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
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To: Boogieman; fso301

FWIW read #34.


35 posted on 01/17/2012 6:02:23 PM PST by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
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To: TigersEye

not tublecane, ME......... I trained with Chuck Norris, and did so well he allowed me to live..


36 posted on 01/18/2012 4:16:34 AM PST by joe fonebone (Project Gunwalker, this will make watergate look like the warm up band......)
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To: joe fonebone

Oops!


37 posted on 01/18/2012 4:19:43 AM PST by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
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To: TigersEye

Well, maybe that’s why all the greasers in the movies carry their switchblades in their back pocket, or in their sock!


38 posted on 01/18/2012 8:36:17 AM PST by Boogieman
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