The Second Amendment Isn’t Only Guns: Virginia’s Switch Blade Ban Died Today

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SOG-TAC AU automatic knife

From Knife Rights . . .

Knife Rights’ Virginia Switchblade Ban Repeal Bill, SB 758, is effective today (July 1). The possession, carry, sale, purchase and manufacture of automatic (switchblade) knives will be legal in the state.

NOTE: The concealed carry knife bans in Virginia, including of switchblade (automatic) knives, will still remain in effect: “If any person carries about his person, hidden from common observation, (i) any dirk, bowie knife, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, machete, razor, … or (v) any weapon of like kind as those enumerated in this subsection…”

Holding a Virginia Concealed Handgun Permit doesn’t allow concealed carry of an automatic (switchblade) knife.

Knife Rights will never stop until all archaic knife restrictions in Virginia are repealed.

With the repeal in Virginia, only five states remain with a complete ban on civilian possession of switchblade (automatic) knives. Knife Rights has led the effort to repeal switchblade bans or restrictions in 19 states, starting with New Hampshire in 2010. Repeals have since been enacted in Alaska, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.

Altogether, Knife Rights’ efforts have resulted in 39 bills repealing knife bans in 25 states and over 150 cities and towns since 2010.

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    • ” you can blow a lung completely out of the body” with one of those things !

    • Want to hear something funny?

      It’s a felony in CA for a non-sworn person to even possess a collapsible baton. But when I was visiting in OK, I saw them for open sale in a neighborhood sporting goods store in the jogging/running section, right there with the OC spray, phone accessories, and reflective armbands. Marketing specifically for self defense to the public.

      • Not funny at all. The upshot of the statute posted below is that each type of knife or other weapon has had to be separately exempted by case law after someone was charged under this statue for it.

        At one point in ancient history, the decade before last, when FOAC was only beginning to show signs of the early stages of dementia and well before Kim totally lost his mind and the majority of the organization decided to follow him down in flames, I was the FOAC point man for an attempt to repeal 908. Kim actually talked me into it, and I was excited to be a part of restoring freedom.

        Kim and FOAC then totally pulled the rug out from under me, and undermined my efforts because they are crazy, and also wanted to spend all of their political capital on reform of the License to Carry Firearms statute which was Kim’s pet project for a year or 2. In the end they accomplished neither and I moved on from them.

        I maintained the list of cases and weapons that had been exempted for a year or two and then gave it up.

        Cases went back to the 60’s or 70’s, IIRC.

        This is going to be from memory so it may not be precise;

        It took about 4 to 6 cases involving handguns before law enforcement stopped charging people under 908 for them.

        Kitchen knifes were several cases, including a guy who first murdered his wife and committed a bunch of other felonies before walking down the street with a kitchen knife in his hand. No idea why they bothered to charge him under 908 for that when they had everything else, but that is the one rap he beat, making kitchen knives clearly legal. So thank God for dumb cops and DAs.

        Knives commonly used in hunting were several cases and gut hooks were part of the issue in some of them so those are now clearly legal.

        Philly kindly jacked some unfortunate soul for nunchucks in his back pocket while he was on his way to martial arts school in his martial arts outfit, so those are legal.

        It has been amended a few times to further obfuscate things.
        § 908. Prohibited offensive weapons.

        (a) Offense defined.–A person commits a misdemeanor of the first degree if, except as authorized by law, he makes repairs, sells, or otherwise deals in, uses, or possesses any offensive weapon.

        (b) Exceptions.–

        (1) It is a defense under this section for the defendant to prove by a preponderance of evidence that he possessed or dealt with the weapon solely as a curio or in a dramatic performance, or that, with the exception of a bomb, grenade or incendiary device, he complied with the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. § 5801 et seq.), or that he possessed it briefly in consequence of having found it or taken it from an aggressor, or under circumstances similarly negativing any intent or likelihood that the weapon would be used unlawfully.

        (2) This section does not apply to police forensic firearms experts or police forensic firearms laboratories. Also exempt from this section are forensic firearms experts or forensic firearms laboratories operating in the ordinary course of business and engaged in lawful operation who notify in writing, on an annual basis, the chief or head of any police force or police department of a city, and, elsewhere, the sheriff of a county in which they are located, of the possession, type and use of offensive weapons.

        (3) This section shall not apply to any person who makes, repairs, sells or otherwise deals in, uses or possesses any firearm for purposes not prohibited by the laws of this Commonwealth.

        (c) Definitions.–As used in this section, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this subsection:

        “Firearm.” Any weapon which is designed to or may readily be converted to expel any projectile by the action of an explosive or the frame or receiver of any such weapon.

        “Offensive weapons.” Any bomb, grenade, machine gun, sawed-off shotgun with a barrel less than 18 inches, firearm specially made or specially adapted for concealment or silent discharge, any blackjack, sandbag, metal knuckles, dagger, knife, razor or cutting instrument, the blade of which is exposed in an automatic way by switch, push-button, spring mechanism, or otherwise, any stun gun, stun baton, taser or other electronic or electric weapon or other implement for the infliction of serious bodily injury which serves no common lawful purpose.

        (d) Exemptions.–The use and possession of blackjacks by the following persons in the course of their duties are exempt from this section:

        (1) Police officers, as defined by and who meet the requirements of the act of June 18, 1974 (P.L.359, No.120), referred to as the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

        (2) Police officers of first class cities who have successfully completed training which is substantially equivalent to the program under the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

        (3) Pennsylvania State Police officers.

        (4) Sheriffs and deputy sheriffs of the various counties who have satisfactorily met the requirements of the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

        (5) Police officers employed by the Commonwealth who have satisfactorily met the requirements of the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

        (6) Deputy sheriffs with adequate training as determined by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency.

        (7) Liquor Control Board agents who have satisfactorily met the requirements of the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

        (Dec. 20, 1983, P.L.291, No.78, eff. imd.; July 6, 1984, P.L.647, No.134, eff. 90 days; July 11, 1985, P.L.235, No.58, eff. 60 days; Oct. 4, 1994, P.L.571, No.84, eff. 60 days; Nov. 6, 2002, P.L.1096, No.132, eff. 60 days)

        2002 Amendment. Act 132 amended subsec. (c).

        References in Text. The act of June 18, 1974 (P.L.359, No.120), referred to as the Municipal Police Education and Training Law, referred to in subsection (d)(1), was repealed by the act of December 19, 1996 (P.L.1158, No.177). The subject matter is now contained in Subchapter D of Chapter 21 of Title 53 (Municipalities Generally).

        Cross References. Section 908 is referred to in section 6105 of this title; section 3304 of Title 5 (Athletics and Sports).

        • PS; Every flea market and many single owner convenience stores in PA still sell everything from switchblades and brass knuckles to saps and batons.

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    Maybe a mid-season trade is in order.

    I propose trading the management from Knife Rights to the NRA plus cash, ten of Wayne’s custom suits, and a player to be named later.


  2. Here in Florida, a CWP is required to carry an ‘Automatic Knife’ of any sort.

    I suppose the ‘Bruen’ decision should come in handy for dis-mantling bullshit knife laws, shouldn’t it?

    • ^This is NOT the original “Shifty Schiff’s Standard Hotel Sheet Changer”, it’s a Democratic operative, a shill, a troll, how do I know, because I am, I’m formerly ” Justin’s Semen Stained Sparkly Socks”, “Suck Schumer’s Syphilitic Schwantz”, “Shannon Watt’s Misshapened Monsanto Mammaries” and “Watt’s Twat” among others.

      • “This is NOT the original “Shifty Schiff’s Standard Hotel Sheet Changer”…”

        Yes, it is.

        Stop impersonating me. What are you, a frightened little boy with nothing hanging between your spindly legs? 🤣

  3. In principle I am against any kind of knife restriction, especially considering constitutional carry is the law in half the country.

    In practice? Assisted opening knives (which have been declared as not switchblades in almost every state and jurisdiction) are faster and easier than any switchblade, and usually cheaper.

    • I can draw and fire two aimed shots before I could get my knife out and open, it is for cutting string and opening boxes.

      • While I agree that in most circumstances a firearm is a better weapon overall than a knife, your statement indicates that you should put in more time practicing drawing your knife.

        • Preach it. Use your EDC pocket knife multiple times a day (as I do), and the motions become fast, fluid and natural…

  4. Good riddance to a BS “guilt by association” law.

    Sometimes the most effective way to ridicule something is to show how absurd it would be even if you accepted its underlying assumptions and justifications as true.

    So let’s pretend any banned weapon becomes completely unavailable. In the context of Virginia’s modest restrictions on firearms, this law should have been called the “Forcing Idiot Would-Be Stabbers to Choose Guns Instead Law”.

  5. I live in the South & have carried a knife on my person, since I was eight years old.
    My Father told me not to carry it to school, but church & store where fine.

    • I’ve got an old schools chair, the kind with a little table on the side. It’s fun to read all the names carved in it.

      • “I’ve got an old schools chair, the kind with a little table on the side.”

        Is your name gnawed onto it anywhere? 🙂


    It’s crazy how many so-called laws are out here that most have just bowed down to for so many years.
    Be it self defense or just a hobby, government has no rights even peaking into the Second Amendment or us unless we’ve actually committed a heinous crime with one.
    I’m a country guy. We were some of the last few that could pull into our school parking lot with a gun or two laying across our back glass in a gunrack that was fully visible to anyone who might look or walk by.
    Funny how I never remember the unsupervised weapons ever jump out and take it on themselves to go and do any harm. And also way back then. Most every male student, and sorry if I offended anyone by using the term “male,” carried knives of all sizes. I’d bet money that the principal and all male teachers, sorry again, probably had one on them as well.
    And being as though we were all country it wasn’t and wouldn’t be anything strange for many females, so sorry again labeling, to be carrying too. This crazy world huh? Pretty much every person, young and old, tall and short, male and female, police and just released felon, etc and etc, are given a knife at almost normal dinner. One would think that every Thanksgiving dinner would be a bloodbath considering the lefts concerns and theories. Anyway…It’s so hard for me to understand and believe that there really is any kind of knife law. I mean seriously?!! And then there is that thing about self-defense that is supposed to be covered by a law? And also that piece of paper call the Constitution. Funny how it explains that it is a God given right have, keep and bear arms.Yeah, arms being weapons like guns!! Guns for gosh sakes!! Kinda a bit more dangerous than knives I’ve heard.
    Okay I’m done. And for anybody happy and impressed for my apologies about the gender stuff, it’s ignorant people like you that write up and pass the banning of weapons especially knives. Wishing you all a great day and a super great July 4th Independence Day!!!

  7. Laws restricting switchblades are garbage. I think most of them are the product of the 1960s and ’70s “anti-weapon” craze that also resulted in laws banning nunchucks and throwing stars.

    That being said, having owned several automatic knives, I find thumb studs with a smooth opening hinge to be far more practical. Automatics usually have some form of safety that you need to disengage, and it’s just more awkward in general keeping your hand out of the path of the blade as it opens.

    • I’m guessing that the laws against nunchucks and throwing stars were probably meant for the purpose of harassing Asians and Asian-Americans. How many crimes were ever committed with such weapons anyways?

  8. As I understand it, a year or 2 back Texas repealed *ALL* laws concerning knives, You may now carry your sword concealed or open without a license of any kind. I have yet to hear of any swordfights at the OK corral, or gushers of blood running in the streets. What is the supposed rationale for prohibiting switchblades, and where is the evidence? We have been played for suckers since before I was born, and I’m about to turn 76. Lots of “obviously”, “everybody knows”, and such utterly nonsensical non-evidence without any sign of actual adverse occurrences.

  9. “The concealed carry knife bans in Virginia, including of switchblade (automatic) knives, will still remain in effect.”

    Let me get this straight: switchblades are now legal, EXCEPT you can’t do “concealed carry” of a switchblade. How the heck are you supposed to do open carry of a switchblade? Hang it around your neck on a string? They’re POCKET knives, FFS, they’re incapable of open carry.
    Well, I guess maybe if you put one in an OWB holster, maybe it could be considered open carry, but what kind of holster would show that you’re carrying a switchblade knife openly — a clear, transparent holster?

    Anyway, here in New Jersey, not only are switchblades still illegal, every double-edged knife is illegal, even if it only has a 1/2-inch blade, “Because reasons.”

    • “How the heck are you supposed to do open carry of a switchblade? Hang it around your neck on a string? They’re POCKET knives, FFS, they’re incapable of open carry.”

      Pocket clips work on the outside of the pocket as the inside.

      (Not that I ever would, cuz I’d lose it in short order. 🙁 )

      Do you belong to any NJ knife rights organizations? Join one, and volunteer…

  10. Let’s get btghbis right. What the law now appears to,be is that it is leagal to crry own etc. but still illegal to put it in your pockedt [as in ‘concealed] Who in god; ‘s name thought that one up.
    What the hell does anybody want a bloody ‘switch blade’ for anyway.? They serve only ONE purpose as far as I can see and it’s NOT a nice purpose is it?’
    Here in the UK we have as you might be aware a bit of a KNIFE CRIME problem ourselves but these things are banned It’s not stopped Knife Crime for sure but consider this statistic. In the UK [POPULATION around 70 million ] there are around 800/900 ‘illegal’ deaths from all causes per annums and per capita and I have no reason to believe that the UK is anything but around the European Average Those ILLEGAL deaths include, Knife Crime, gun crime, manslaughter, ‘domestic’ [the most common!] and Acts of Terrorism. Interpolate this to the USA with a population of around 330 million, or just North of four times that of the UK, and you get around 4500/5000 ilegal deaths in the entire US of A per annum.
    Instead of which you have upwards of 20, victims of GUN CRIME alone and now for some ungodly reason, from the comments above it would appear that there is a cause for PRIDE to add bloody SWITCH BLADES and the like to the mix. Is it any wonder that most of the civilised world think American gun freaks, and now apparently KNIFE FREAKS are as mad as a Box of Frogs.

    • So you have bans on knives, and yet you also still have a bloody knife crime problem? Maybe that might tell you something about whether such bans are working.

      Rather than babbling about countries foreign to you, you might instead ask what sorts of force multipliers YOU can bear for self-defenCe under the laws of the kingdom of which you are a subject.

    • “…They serve only ONE purpose as far as I can see and it’s NOT a nice purpose is it?”

      You’ve never used a pocket knife much, have you? The “purpose” of a switchblade, assisted opening knife, thumb-stud knife, and several other variations is to make it possible to open that pocket knife with just one hand. Once that knife is opened, there are a myriad of possibilities for how the knife will be used, and that use has absolutely no relationship to how the knife was opened.

  11. Here in Oregon, automatic knives have been legal for quite some time. They are restricted somewhat, as you are not allowed to carry one as a “concealed weapon”. Based on some case law, having the knife-clip showing outside your pocket is enough to make the knife “not-concealed”. There is also some very limited case law that an automatic knife carried inside a pocket could be considered a “tool” rather than a weapon.

    Also, your concealed carry permit does not apply to anything other than a firearm… it doesn’t allow you to carry an automatic knife concealed inside a pocket.

    • “Based on some case law, having the knife-clip showing outside your pocket is enough to make the knife “not-concealed”.”

      Interesting, I’ll have find out what Florida’s peculiarities are concerning knife open or concealed carry.

      In FL, automatic opening knifes are legal only for those with concealed carry permits.

      Thanks for the heads-up…

      • In Florida it’s a Concealed Weapons Permit, not a Concealed Firearms Permit so switchblades are gtg.

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