WELL, I’VE BEEN ON TOP OF THIS STORY FOR QUITE A WHILE: Knife Rights: The Unseen Side of the Second Amendment.
While congressional Democrats and Republicans go head-to-head over gun control, proponents of a smaller, often overlooked facet of the Second Amendment’s right to keep and bear arms pursue a battle of their own—the right to carry a knife.
Knife Rights, an Arizona-based advocacy group aimed at ridding states of existing bans on specific types of knives, is leading the fight against restrictive knife laws across the U.S.
“Protecting knife rights is the second front in the defense of the Second Amendment,” Todd Rathner, director of legislative affairs at Knife Rights, told The Daily Signal.
The group also seeks passage of “knife law preemption,” which essentially removes local and county restrictions that conflict with state laws on using and carrying knives.
Doug Ritter, founder and chairman of Knife Rights, noted an “interesting contrast between our fight versus the gun rights fight because we generally receive a significant amount of bipartisan support for our bills.”
“We have had a number of NRA F-rated members supporting our bills,” Ritter said, referring to lawmakers in Congress and state legislatures with low scores on gun rights from the National Rifle Association.
That support, he said, made it possible for the group to successfully pass 21 bills in 15 states, all in the past seven years.
The Knife Rights leaders say they’re finding more and more Democrats advocating the group’s mission, a stark contrast between knife rights and gun rights.
“There’s a large group of traditional Democrats saying people shouldn’t get arrested for using a pocketknife as an everyday tool,” Rathner said. “To put it simply, we’ve got to stop arresting people for using a tool.”
That’s what we think in Tennessee, which is why we passed one of the most liberal knife laws in the country this year.