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If Knives Are Outlawed…Customs And Border Protection Proposal Could Ban Many Pocketknives

Friday, June 12, 2009

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has issued a proposed rule change that directly targets the importation of "assisted opening" folding knives.  (Read the proposed rule here.) The proposed regulations would designate all these knives as "switchblades" (despite the fact they do not fall under the federal definition of "switchblades"), and would make them illegal for import into the United States. 

The proposed rule could affect all knives that can be opened with one hand, because it also includes changes in the interpretation of "gravity and inertia" opening knives in a way that could outlaw all knives that can be opened with a single hand. This means the new regulation could ban the importation of most of the pocketknives that are now in popular use.  

And it could have a far greater impact.  The American Knife and Tool Institute and Knife Rights, Inc. have both reviewed the proposed new regulations and are very concerned that the impact will be far greater than just a ban on the importation of assisted opening knives.  If the new regulations also affect the broader category of single-handed opening knives, it could make millions of knives illegal for import.  More importantly, many local jurisdictions and some states depend on the definitions used by the CBP.  These changes could make hundreds of millions of knives now in regular use, illegal.  And, of course, millions of hunters use and rely on their knives and would be adversely affected by this proposed regulation.

CBP is attempting to expedite this rulemaking and is only keeping comments open until June 21, 2009.  The American Knife and Tool Institute and Knife Rights, Inc. are leading the charge against the.  For more information and to make your voice heard in opposition to these new regulations, please go to: http://www.kniferights.org and http://www.akti.org/.

To read NRA's comments, please click here

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