Sen. Crapo Endorses Switchblade Knives

Interesting what you can get with a plaque and award when it comes to switchblade knives. This story has all sorts of “cutting edge” elements sprinkled with references about not being the “sharpest knife in the drawer.”

The following press release is a great example of how to spin descriptions and prey upon conservative values, but bottom line is a United States senator wants an Idaho company to be able to manufacture switchblade knives, calling them “automatic knives”. While the bill has little hope of passing, it is likely to get support among inner city gangs and late night TV infomercial vendors. Switchblade knives are illegal in 23 states.

Pictured above is Senator Crapo receiving a “Common Sense Award” from CJ Buck, Chairman and CEO of Buck Knives, Inc., as well as other members of the American Knife & Tool Institute.

Here is the entire press release from Crapo:

Bill Would Enhance Manufacturing Growth, Interstate Commerce and Consumer Choice Beneficial for Idaho Sportsmen

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Idaho Senator Mike Crapo last week introduced the Freedom of Commerce Act, S. 1779, which would allow consumers to purchase an automatic knife legal in their state, regardless of where it was manufactured in the U.S.

“In states allowing the possession of automatic knives, it is imperative that law-abiding citizens and sportsmen have the ability to buy and sell the tools vital to their trade,” said Crapo. “This measure would remove one of the many federal regulatory burdens that have hindered manufacturing growth, interstate commerce and consumer practices for far too long.”

Enacted in 1958, the Federal Switchblade Act (FSA) leverages the federal government’s power over interstate commerce to prohibit the purchase, sale and trade of automatic knives between any of the 50 states or U.S. territories. Current federal law prohibits the interstate sale and importation of switchblades, curtailing states’ rights to legislate the legality of certain tools within their borders.

Legislation introduced by Crapo would repeal certain provisions of the FSA and allow domestic manufacturers to ship and sell their products to buyers in other states, as well as permit the importation certain knife parts. Moreover, the bill would not replace or alter any existing state laws regarding switchblades and other automatic knives. Buck Knives, Inc., a knife manufacturer based in Post Falls, Idaho, supports the legislation.

“Drafting legislation is always a balance between satisfying an emotional drive to fix something, and finding common sense mechanisms that will truly deliver a solution,” said CJ Buck, President of Buck Knives. “In this bill, Senator Crapo has done an exceptional job of striking that balance in a way that will help knife owners and consumers, remove unnecessary federal burdens, and allow states to decide what tools are legal within their jurisdiction – as the Constitution guarantees. We’re thrilled to see this legislation introduced, and couldn’t be prouder to have Buck Knives’ senior senator leading the charge.”

Currently legal in 27 states, automatic knives are defined based on their opening mechanism and are used primarily by professional trades and outdoor recreationalists.

Comments & Discussion

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  1. Dave,

    You have done a good job in your statement making automatic knives sound dangerous and sinister. I own several automatic knives, including a Buck 110 Automatic. I like them for the convenience of being able to open the knife with one hand, I sometimes run into situations where the one handed operation is very helpful. I guess that my point is that the knife is just a tool for a law-abiding guy like me. Should I be denied having an automatic knife because a gang member might take a fancy to one? And how are they any more dangerous than a regular folding knife or an assisted opening knife? They are easier to open, does that make it more dangerous? I ain’t sayin, I am just saying’!

    EDITOR NOTE–Hey, they gave him a “common sense” award. Who am I to complain?

  2. Long ago, when America was actually a free country, and not a Oligarch controlled Corporatocracy, we the people had the same armaments as the military.
    Slowly by a million cuts, we are being disarmed and taught to be helpless. Bravo for Butchy!
    Now, about those Stinger Missiles, RPG’s, fully automatic assault rifles, etc…

  3. I’m a dealer for Benchmade knives. They are made in Oregon and have grown tremendously over the last couple of years. The last time I talked to a customer service gal she said they have over 100 employees now and are growing. They make one of the highest quality knives in the world. It’s one of the few brands that I sell where I can still make a 40% margin. Most of their business isn’t to gang members or even trouble makers. The average auto sells to the end user for $250+
    Look online if you don’t believe me. The infilel is the most common model. They sell thousands to the military, fire departments and emergency crews across the world. Many people use these because they are easy to operate with one hand. Like cutting a seatbelt while holding a person back.
    I’ve talked to many police departments in California to find out why they are illegal. The best reason is that autos and butterfly knives have been associated with gangs. Meaning that gang members seem to think they are cool. So that was their way of getting them to break another law. So when they didn’t have evidence of them harassing people they could at least book them on charges for having an illegal weapon.
    I don’t personally care so much because I use a spring assisted knife that opens just as easy and fast but still requires two hand to close.
    It’s just too bad that an Idaho company is loosing out on jobs and profit.
    This same similar argument is in California about the 50cals. While no gang member has ever spent that crazy amount to buy one they are still illegal to own.
    Just my $.02

  4. Guardian, your tone is off base a bit here, as well as inaccurate, including the headline.

    Not sure what “spin descriptions” and “prey upon conservative values” means; but in your words you are the one spinning the message.

    First, the bill does not allow Buck Knives “to manufacture switchblade knives, calling them ‘automatic knives’.
    Buck Knives ALREADY does make such knives- and some people can buy them.

    Call it what you like, switchblade, auto, grandpa’s, my, weapon or tool… whatever. There is no “spinning” of terms. There is a technical definition of a switchblade in action and in the law- it is also called an automatic knife by the law: Definition-
    “switchblade knife” means any knife having a blade which opens automatically—….

    I love my 2.75 switchblade.

    Also important, switchblades, aka auto knives, are different than the more common “assisted opening”.

    Does anyone think this Buck 110 Auto knife is a preferred weapon for inner city gangs… ha!
    Fact is, Buck can currently ship it to someone upon credentials of Military, LEO, or EMS. (that is an exception to the current federal law) I say some police certainly are gangsters though, so, okay, it must be a weapon for gangsters. Bam!

    The bill intent is to allow a FREE American citizen to BUY such a knife if it is legal in their state of residence. Seems pretty reasonable- and NOT “preying” upon anything.

    Could we please keep in mind some of your readers are dumb and might actually believe inaccurate information on this blog? 😉

    Lastly, the bill has “little hope of passing”? Says who? Same person who said it allows Buck to manufacture switchblades by changing the name?

    I am glad Buck Knives decided to move to Idaho and be an Idaho Company- just for reasons like this with Senator Crapo helping them out.

    A good company with great products.
    I think I’ll go buy another one. 🙂

  5. Eagle Writer
    Sep 13, 2017, 3:25 pm

    The legality and normalcy of manufacturing and/or owning an automatic knife should be as automatic as the knife. There “should” be no story here.

  6. Regardless of the argument one way or another, is this the best Crapo has to offer from Washington?

  7. Good ideas sometimes come from weird places. I doubt that the outlawing of switch blade knives has saved a single life.

    These are not dangerous weapons used by criminals. Handymen, outdoorsmen and collectors are the only ones affected by such a crazy law.

    Irrational fear inspired by “Westside Story” and “Blackboard Jungle” movies are probably responsible for this knee jerk rule.

    Easy opening knives are a convenient, utilitarian tool just like electric can openers or battery operated drills.

    EDITOR NOTE–Which prompts the warning, “Don’t bring a can opener to a knife fight.” Don’t forget the guy in Hills Village who pointed a soldering gun at coppers and got peppered with multiple 9mm rounds and lived to tell about it.

  8. Think I get it
    Sep 14, 2017, 9:21 pm

    Last to potty train trophy to Crapo.

  9. Steve Rinehart
    Sep 15, 2017, 8:45 pm

    How have we, including we hunters and knife aficionados, managed to survive without legal switchblades? Perhaps when Mr. Crapo, one of our two useless U.S. senators, finishes posturing on this issue he might consider protecting consumers from further misdoings by Equifax and its fellow credit raters. True, that would require actual work, not to mention willingness to buck the credit lobby.

  10. I believe we need to maintain some common-sense switchblade control. So I propose… switchblades should be legal to purchase, possess and use, by patriotic God-fearing Americans, unless you wear:
    – blue or red bandanna (21st-century gang wear)
    – black leather jacket (20th-century gang wear)


    (Those long, curvy-blade knifes that the Al Qaedas, ISIS, etc. fancy… they are NOT available in switchblade, right?)

    On a serious note… I totally agree with the people who are critical of our esteemed Career Politician Crapo. He’s totally focused on shaking hands, kissing babies, photo-ops, and the fat pension that awaits.

  11. Sure glad we’re paying your salary Mike. Money well spent. /s SMH

    When you’re done posing for photo ops with CEOs and winning meaningless “awards”, how about you go back to Washington and actually get something important accomplished?

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