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Author Topic: AKTI - Fighting For Our Knife Rights  (Read 50368 times)
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AKTICommunication
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« on: March 07, 2008, 01:45:29 PM »

Hello Knife Talk Online Members:

We need your help in the ongoing fight to allow you to keep and use your knives. We need your help today!

The American Knife & Tool Institute, which celebrated its 10th anniversary in January, 2008, has historically adopted a policy of trying to take specific action to protect your knife rights.

In February, 2007, we got a bill passed (which we initiated) in Arkansas. The bill successfully repealed the state's weapon law which formerly stated that if you carried a knife with a blade of 3 1/2 inches or longer, you were guilty of a weapons violation.

We will go from state to state, as we have the funds (lobbyists cost money), to initiate bills that address the most sweeping anti-knife laws first. We support your right to carry a knife. We also advocate strong penalties for people who use knives in the commission of a crime.

You can find out about all our successes on your behalf at ... www.akti.org . During the past 10 years, we have initiated legislation (and gotten it passed in every case) that has protected an estimated 21 million knife owners.

Our current legislative action is taking place in South Carolina. We initiated a bill to address the current law that says if you carry a knife with a blade longer than two inches, you are subject to arrest. We believe that includes virtually every knife commonly carried.

Our lobbyist will be representing AKTI and all knife owners in the state (and those who plan to visit) from possible arrest. You may live and work in the state (and even use your knife every day for work). You may have relatives in South Carolina who own and carry knives. You may plan to visit. You may be a hunter, fisherman, hiker, backpacker, golfer or birdwatcher who plans to pursue your hobby in the state and spend your money there.

You can help us help you!

Please contact the South Carolina Senate Judiciary Committee ASAP. The full Judiciary Committee will vote on S 968 on Tuesday, March 11. The subcommittee already passed the bill on March 4. But we need a large show of support to keep this bill moving forward.

South Carolina?s current statutes make it a criminal offense to carry a knife with a blade longer than two inches.

Here is another sample letter that you can modify when you contact the Committee. (Personalize it by telling the committee how you are connected to South Carolina.) This one focuses on the huge impact of hunters and fishermen on the state economy.

Send your emails today to ? sju@scsenate.org

March 7, 2008

South Carolina Senate Judiciary Committee
PO Box 142
Columbia, SC  29202-0142
sju@scsenate.org

RE:  Support for S 968

Dear Committee Members:

The American Knife & Tool Institute, the organization that represents all segments of the sporting knife industry and all responsible knife owners, supports passage of S 968.

More than 95 percent of the knives used by sportsmen, recreational users and the construction industry have blades longer than two inches. Virtually every hunter and fisherman carries a knife and it would be rare to find one that has a blade less than two inches.

Recent studies by the Congressional Sportsmen?s Foundation, the National Shooting Sports Foundation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service?s 2006 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation show that hunters and fishermen provide a huge impact on the South Carolina economy.
1)   An estimated 595,000 hunters and fishermen spend more than $1.8 billion per year in your state.
2)   They support 32,700 state jobs that produce a payroll of $839,000 million.
3)   Outdoor activities generate $182 million in state and local taxes annually.

Your current knife law makes virtually every hunter and fisherman subject to arrest for knife carry. South Carolina should welcome these law-abiding people into your state. And we should not make de-facto criminals of the estimated 2,000,000 state residents and other visitors who carry knives for their jobs or recreational purposes.

Please support S 968.

Sincerely,

David D. Kowalski
AKTI Communication Coordinator
715-209-7389

« Last Edit: July 18, 2008, 06:13:19 AM by radicat » Logged
 
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« Reply #16 on: April 03, 2008, 02:03:23 PM »

AKTI ? Contact South Carolina House ? 4/3/08   

We need your help again ASAP to keep our knife bill moving forward in South Carolina.

AKTI?s bill S 968 (which would repeal the state?s current weapons violation for carrying a knife with a blade longer than two inches) was assigned to the South Carolina House Judiciary Committee the week of March 25. From there it was placed in the Criminal Laws subcommittee.

If you live in South Carolina, do business there, if you ever travel there, if you plan on a fishing, hunting, hiking, biking or camping trip there, if you have knife-owning relatives there, tell the committee members that. You have a legitimate interest and stake in this bill.

Please mail or email a personalized version of the following letter.

April 3, 2008

South Carolina House of Representatives Judiciary Committee
Criminal Laws Subcommittee   
G. Murrell Smith, Jr., Chairman
420B Blatt Bldg.
Columbia, SC  29201
GMS@schouse.org

RE:  Support for S 968

Dear Committee Members:

The American Knife & Tool Institute, the organization that represents all segments of the sporting knife industry and all responsible knife owners, supports passage of S 968.

More than 95 percent of the knives used by sportsmen, gardeners, recreational users and the construction industry have blades longer than two inches. Virtually every hunter and fisherman carries a knife and it would be rare to find one that has a blade less than two inches.

Recent studies by the Congressional Sportsmen?s Foundation, the National Shooting Sports Foundation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service?s 2006 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation show that hunters and fishermen provide a huge impact on the South Carolina economy.
1)   An estimated 595,000 hunters and fishermen spend more than $1.8 billion per year in your state.
2)   They support 32,700 state jobs that produce a payroll of $839,000 million.
3)   Outdoor activities generate $182 million in state and local taxes annually.

Your current knife law makes virtually every hunter and fisherman subject to arrest for knife carry. South Carolina should welcome these law-abiding people into your state. And we should not make de-facto criminals of the estimated 2,000,000 state residents and other visitors who carry knives for their jobs or a broad range of recreational purposes.

Please support S 968.

Sincerely,

David D. Kowalski
AKTI Communications Coordinator


In addition to Chairman Smith, you can also send letters or emails directly to the following members of the subcommittee:

Rep. William G. ?Bill? Herbkersman (R. Dist. 118)
434B Blatt Bldg.
Columbia, SC  29201
HerbkersmanB@schouse.org

Rep. Douglas Jennings, Jr. ( D. Dist 54)
333C Blatt Bldg.
Columbia, SC  29201
DJ@schouse.org

Rep. R. Keith Kelly (R. Dist 35)
402A Blatt Bldg.
Columbia, SC  29201
KellyK@schouse.org

Rep. J. Todd Rutherford (D. Dist 74)
432B Blatt Bldg.
Columbia, SC  29201
JTR@schouse.org


P.S. If you send a letter, please email me a copy so I can forward to our lobbyist. Email to communications@akti.org

 
 

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« Reply #17 on: April 05, 2008, 07:27:31 PM »

Thanks David. I got my emails off. These events compel me to put my busy life on hold. It's just too important to not do so. Others are doing the same.

Please let us know when it's appropriate to do more. The following link is for email addresses for all of the Representatives of South Carolina, all of whom will eventually make a difference.

http://www.scstatehouse.net/html-pages/houseemail.html

House Judiciary Committee members:

http://www.scstatehouse.net/html-pages/housecommlst.html#jud


I'll make your original post a sticky and try to get all AKTI posts together.       Clay
« Last Edit: April 05, 2008, 07:33:44 PM by radicat » Logged
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« Reply #18 on: May 09, 2008, 06:48:56 AM »

SC House Subcommittee Passes AKTI Bill ? 5/8/08      

S 968, introduced by AKTI, passed out of the Criminal Law subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee today.

This was a significant hurdle. The full Judiciary committee will likely vote on the bill on Tuesday, May 13.

Your letters and emails are powerful. If you have not yet sent a letter to House members, please use the following as a model. At least send a letter to Chairman Harrison. But I have also listed the email addresses of all 25 committee members. Let Judiciary Committee members know if you are a hunter, fisherman, potential visitor for other recreation, resident or a business owner with links to South Carolina.

May 8, 2008

South Carolina House of Representatives Judiciary Committee
James H. Harrison, Chairman
512 Blatt Bldg.
Columbia, SC  29201
HJU@schouse.org

RE:  Support for S 968

Dear Chairman Harrison and Committee Members:

The American Knife & Tool Institute, the organization that represents all segments of the sporting knife industry and all responsible knife owners, supports passage of S 968.

More than 95 percent of the knives used by sportsmen, gardeners, recreational users and the construction industry have blades longer than two inches. Virtually every hunter and fisherman carries a knife and it would be rare to find one that has a blade less than two inches.

Recent studies by the Congressional Sportsmen?s Foundation, the National Shooting Sports Foundation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service?s 2006 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation show that hunters and fishermen provide a huge impact on the South Carolina economy.
1)   An estimated 595,000 hunters and fishermen spend more than $1.8 billion per year in your state.
2)   They support 32,700 state jobs that produce a payroll of $839,000 million.
3)   Outdoor activities generate $182 million in state and local taxes annually.

Your current knife law makes virtually every hunter and fisherman subject to arrest for knife carry. South Carolina should welcome these law-abiding people into your state. And we should not make de-facto criminals of the estimated 2,000,000 state residents and other visitors who carry knives for their jobs or a broad range of recreational purposes.

Please support S 968.

Sincerely,

David D. Kowalski
AKTI Communications Coordinator

CC:   Walton J. McLeod, 1st Vice Chairman,  WJM@schouse.org
   William G. ?Bill? Herbkersman, 2nd Vice Chairman,  HerbkersmanB@schouse.org
   Karl B. Allen,  KBA@schouse.org
   Bruce W. Bannister,  BannisterB@schouse.org
   Alan D. Clemmons,  ClemmonsA@schouse.org
   Creighton B. Coleman,  cbc@schouse.org
   Kristopher R. Crawford,  CrawfordK@schouse.org
   F. Gregory Delleney, Jr., fgd@schouse.org
   Ben A. Hagood, Jr.,  HagoodB@schouse.org
   Gloria Arias Haskins,  GAH@schouse.org
   Douglas Jennings, Jr.,  DJ@schouse.org
   R. Keith Kelly,  KellyK@schouse.org
   J. Michael Mulvaney,  MulvaneyM@schouse.org
   J. Todd Rutherford,  JTR@schouse.org
   John L. Scott, Jr.,  JLS@schouse.org
   Fletcher N. Smith,  FNS@schouse.org
   G. Murrell Smith, Jr.,  GMS@schouse.org
   Garry R. Smith,  SmithG@schouse.org
   James E. Smith, Jr.,  RepSmith@JamesSmith.org
   Leonidas E. Stavrinakis,  StavL@schouse.org
   Scott F. Talley,  SFT@schouse.org
   Thad T. Viers,  ViersT@schouse.org
   J. David Weeks,  JDW@schouse.org
   J. Seth Whipper,  JSW@schouse.org


P.S. If you send a letter, please email me a copy so I can forward to our lobbyist. Email to communications@akti.org



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« Reply #19 on: May 12, 2008, 12:29:28 AM »

That is great news David. One step at a time. We'll be happy to get the opportunity to present our emails to the entire house when the bill gets there. But, first things first, right?

If anyone has more emails to get out, the addresses do all work. Many returned a thank you note.

Maybe some of them will go to Atlanta BLADE show and learn what fine folks knife lovers are. If you meet one of them, buy him or her a nice cold drink to enjoy while you present our side. Of course it would be nice if the final vote were already decided in our favor by then.

Keep on trucking David. We're behind you 100%.                    Clay
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« Reply #20 on: June 02, 2008, 10:04:59 AM »

SC Bill Goes to Governor

AKTI?s bill, S 968, cleared the last legislative hurdles on May 29, 2008 before going to the governor. A last-minute amendment attached to it was rewritten by our lobbyist and accepted by both the Senate and the House.

S 968, which would remove the two-inch blade limit on knives that are carried, has been sent to the governor. He now has five days to sign it or veto it.

Please take a few minutes to write the Governor a letter. You can FAX it to him at ? 803-734-5167. If you want to email him, you can go to ? http://www.scgovernor.com/contact/
and use the form they provide. If you email a version of our letter below, you will need to cut and paste it on the governor?s email site. If you want to call the governor, you can do so at ? 803-734-2100.

Please modify the letter below to reflect your concerns as a hunter, fisherman, potential visitor for other recreation, resident or a business owner with links to South Carolina.

June 2, 2008

Governor Mark Sanford
Office of the South Carolina Governor
PO Box 12267
Columbia, SC  29211

RE:  Support for S 968

Dear Governor Sanford:

The American Knife & Tool Institute, the organization that represents all segments of the sporting knife industry and all responsible knife owners, asks for your support and signature of S 968 when it gets to your desk.

More than 95 percent of the knives used by sportsmen, gardeners, recreational users and the construction industry have blades longer than two inches. Virtually every hunter and fisherman carries a knife and it would be rare to find one that has a blade less than two inches.

Recent studies by the Congressional Sportsmen?s Foundation, the National Shooting Sports Foundation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service?s 2006 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation show that hunters and fishermen provide a huge impact on the South Carolina economy.
1)   An estimated 595,000 hunters and fishermen spend more than $1.9 billion per year in your state.
2)   They support 32,700 state jobs that produce a payroll of $839,000 million.
3)   Outdoor activities generate $182 million in state and local taxes annually.

Your current knife law makes virtually every hunter and fisherman subject to arrest for knife carry. South Carolina should welcome these law-abiding people into your state. And we should not make de-facto criminals of the estimated 2,000,000 state residents and other visitors who carry knives for their jobs or a broad range of recreational purposes.

Please support S 968.

Sincerely,

David D. Kowalski
AKTI Communications Coordinator


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« Reply #21 on: June 05, 2008, 06:18:18 PM »

I made this post to prevent everyone from having to re-read older posts as a result of merging topics. I haven't heard anything on the Governor's decision yet.  Keep the faith.              Clay
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« Reply #22 on: June 06, 2008, 06:46:03 PM »

I send the governor an email, but have not heard back, hope our efforts helped.
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« Reply #23 on: June 06, 2008, 09:33:46 PM »

We won't know how much good we did, even if the news is good. But, we have to always do what we can.
Even when I've been given credit for some successful battles of another nature, I still felt as though I'd not done enough. I'm satisfied that what it cost me was worth it. If I'd done nothing, I'd feel worse.
 
From looking at what the governor has had to deal with this week, the knife bill may be at the bottom of his concerns. I noticed that he and the issue about religious license plates was on the national news today.
And his decision on a tobacco-tax bill caused a big outcry. He seems to be trying NOT to sign more bad laws that will have to be corrected later, as is the case with the old knife-related law that we are trying to change today. The AKTI lobbyist isn't taking anything for granted, I'm sure.                Clay

 
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« Reply #24 on: July 18, 2008, 06:05:26 AM »

THIS IS A RE-POST OF THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE AKTI SUCCESS IN SOUTH CAROLINA.

Just trying to keep things together.

                                                  *****************
 
SC Legislature Overturns Veto

?We have a law,? AKTI lobbyist Palmer Freeman announced late in the day on Wednesday, June 25, 2008.

AKTI?s bill S968 cleared its final hurdle when both houses of the South Carolina legislature voted to overturn the veto of Governor Mark Sanford. A 2/3 majority vote of members present in both houses was required for the override.

Since the bill originated in the Senate, the 34 Senators present (of 46 total) started the process. They voted 33-1 to override the veto. Two hours later, 105 Representatives present (of 124 total) registered their collective voice with a 93-12 vote to overturn the veto.

The bill becomes law virtually immediately. Here are the pertinent amended sections:
Section 16-23-405 of the 1976 Code is amended to read: ? 'weapon' means firearm (rifle, shotgun, pistol, or similar device that propels a projectile through the energy of an explosive), a blackjack, a metal pipe or pole, or any other type of device, or object which may be used to inflict bodily injury or death. (Removes the phrase ? ?knives with blades longer than two inches?.)
Section 16-23-460 of the 1976 Code is amended to read: ?
(C)    The provisions of this section also do not apply to rifles, shotguns, dirks, slingshots, metal knuckles, knives, or razors unless they are used with the intent to commit a crime or in furtherance of a crime." (AKTI added ?knives? to this list to reinforce removing the knife reference in 16-23-405.)
The governor?s veto, as he explained in his veto letter, was not prompted by the knife provision of the bill that now makes it legal to carry a knife with a blade longer than two inches in South Carolina. The governor expressed concern that a last-minute firearms carry amendment for lawmakers and state employees was a demonstration of ?self-interest? on their part. He saw his veto as another way to send a message that he didn?t like the $6 million expenditure on statehouse security equipment that was already nearly completed.

In short, the governor used his veto to rub the collective noses of the legislature in their fiscal irresponsibility, in his view. But it did nothing to stop the $6 million that was already being spent.

In his letter to lawmakers prior to the veto vote, AKTI Communications Coordinator David Kowalski pointed out that, ?Probably 99 percent of the hunting and fishing knives carried have blades in excess of two inches. Without the protection of S 968, South Carolina could lose millions of hunting, fishing and other recreational dollars annually to surrounding states.?

According to a 2006 U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service study released late in 2007, South Carolina enjoyed more than $1.9 billion in spending from hunters and fishermen in 2006.

Kowalski also pointed out that S 968 would not contribute to any increased state spending for security.

The successful override effort was fueled by a major email campaign generated by knife-related forum announcements and direct emails from the AKTI communications office. As lobbyist Freeman said, ?Quite a few of the legislators I spoke with and all of the staffers I spoke with mentioned the flood of emails, correspondence and calls they got on this veto vote.  Thanks for the great grassroots effort.?

Communications coordinator Kowalski also reports that when he made his first call to a Senator?s office the morning of the vote, the secretary told him, ?I know all about this issue; we?ve been getting emails from across the country.? Kowalski left phone messages for all 46 state Senators and had a personal conversation with Senator Ralph Anderson of Greenville.

On the House side, Kowalski left phone messages for all 124 members. He also had personal conversations with Representatives B. R. Skelton, David R. Hiott and Phillip D. Owens. Owens described himself as ?both a hunter and a fisherman? and expressed the opinion that without the repeal of S 968, ?they would pretty much take away all our hunting and fishing knives.?

AKTI would like to thank all those who took the time to send letters and emails during this process that involved several committee meetings, votes, and full floor votes in both houses, plus the veto-override vote. He also heaped praise on the efforts of lobbyist Palmer Freeman. ?Without Palmer getting face-to-face with key decision-makers, this successful result would not have happened,? Kowalski said.

AKTI?s success in South Carolina continues a long line of legislative triumphs for bills they introduced that began in California in 2000, then Florida in 2003, Arkansas in 2007, and now South Carolina in 2008.

?Your AKTI membership dollars go directly to these successful efforts to make knife carry less perilous in this country,? Kowalski concluded. ?We can?t do this without lobbyists and lobbyists cost money. By the same token, lawmakers who get emails, letters and phone calls on any issue know that voters are watching.?

Kowalski also added that, ?unfortunately, if anyone out there has been telling themselves and others that they are concerned about knife rights but never picked up the phone or wrote a letter on this issue, even though they were informed and prompted with model letters every step of the way, then they need to take a long hard look at themselves in the mirror.?

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« Reply #25 on: December 21, 2008, 11:00:56 PM »

Just a quick update on AKTI's fight for our knife rights, for those who haven't signed up to support them yet or may have missed their newsletter.

This next legislative session in Texas, the newly-hired lobbyist will be busy. The current task at hand is to unravel the tangle of confusion that exists among lawmakers as to what the proper description of a switch-blade knife is. This involves an in-depth study of the various mechanisms used  today to open and close a knife and how they work. Then there is the question of what is a bowie knife, a term used to describe an illegal knife in Texas. "Can you believe that?" 

It is unfortunate that the lawmakers are unlikely to eliminate the whole question by simply basing law on intent. Especially when any finite description will probably be outdated by the time it becomes part of law.

Thank goodness for the AKTI team. Let's all be prepared to do our part when we are called upon.
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« Reply #26 on: July 02, 2010, 06:46:19 AM »

Manhattan retail stores, including national chains such as Home Depot and Paragon Sports, have been targeted by the District Attorney?s office in an undercover investigation in search of illegal ?gravity? knives. Claiming many legal one-hand opening knives are opened by gravity, the DA?s office has asked for ?contributions? from retailers to avoid deferred prosecution.

Store owners, employees and customers in New York beware. The DA has publicly announced intentions to expand this effort to increase the $1.9 million collected so far in ?contributions? beyond Manhattan to the rest of New York City and New York State, sharing the wealth with other government agencies.

Help AKTI fight this infringement on law-abiding New York citizens and businesses.

We need help spreading the word.  For more detail www.AKTI.org.  Thanks, Jan
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American Knife & Tool Institute
Imagine Your Life Without a Knife!
Email | akti@akti.org
Phone/Fax | (307) 587-8296
Website |  www.AKTI.org or www.SaveOurKnives.com

Working since 1998 to ensure your ability to make, sell, own, carry and use the knife and edged tool of your choice.
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« Reply #27 on: July 02, 2010, 08:12:51 PM »

Click on that link and you will see Jan did some work on her calculator.
The odds of being killed by a knife,  1 in 90,503
Your odds of being killed with a by lightning, l in  81,701!!!

Jan thanks for posting this up on our form.
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« Reply #28 on: January 18, 2013, 07:41:08 PM »

Sorry to be so long gone from this forum.  So much to do and so little time!  Pleased to announce that Missy Beyer is now helping AKTI with social media so expect to hear from her occasionally on updates.  We're working on a record number of knife law changes this year.  And it appears to be very challenging just staying on the defense!

We have a contest going on our Facebook page - www.facebook.com/saveourknives - to reach 2500 likes or shares.  Winner with receive a SOGzilla with AKTI etched on the blade.  Check it out.

Thanks, Jan
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American Knife & Tool Institute
Imagine Your Life Without a Knife!
Email | akti@akti.org
Phone/Fax | (307) 587-8296
Website |  www.AKTI.org or www.SaveOurKnives.com

Working since 1998 to ensure your ability to make, sell, own, carry and use the knife and edged tool of your choice.
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« Reply #29 on: January 20, 2013, 09:31:03 PM »

For those of you why may not have heard of AKTI,they are a non profit organization made up of knife manufacturers and folks like us who wish to be able to be prepared with a decent knife of their choice that can be used when ever a knife is needed.

Good folks who deserve our support.
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« Reply #30 on: May 11, 2013, 08:36:06 PM »

Thanks for posting that up Radicat. AKTI is composed of good folks, they do not run any other organizations down, they do not claim to be doing the work all on their own - they just do their job and keep us informed. You can bet that any contributions to them will be a sound investment to the future of our knives.
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