Huge win for Knife Rights

An e-mail from reports that the “Senate has passed the conference report for the fiscal year 2010 Homeland Security Appropriations Bill with our amendment to the Federal Switchblade Act intact.” The bill now goes to President Obama for his expected signature. The bill makes technical changes in the definitions of the Federal Switchblade Act. In particular, under the revised statute, a “switchblade” is not: “a knife that contains a spring, detent, or other mechanism designed to create a bias toward closure of the blade and that requires exertion applied to the blade by hand, wrist, or arm to overcome the bias toward closure to assist in opening the knife.”

Earlier this year, the Customs Bureau had proposed revising several of its previous rulings; the effect would have been to bring a very large percentage of folding knives under the Switchblade Act. Knife Rights–with strong assistance from the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) and from the National Rifle Association–led a public mobilization which garnered widespread, bi-partisan congressional support. At first, the citizen activism resulted in Customs halting its proposed regulatory change. Because the Switchblade Act’s original langauge is very broad, Knife Rights then worked for a permanent resolution to the problem, by clarifying the statute.

A citizen group with a shoestring budget, Knife Rights was founded in 2006. Today’s action is an impressive accomplishment for such a new organization.