TN bill would legalize switchblades, long knives - Montgomery Alabama news.

TN bill would legalize switchblades, long knives


The fight on Capitol Hill has turned from guns to knives. Right now, switchblades and knives longer than four inches are illegal in Tennessee, but at least one lawmaker wants to change that.

Sen. Mike Bell, R-Riceville, calls it a constitutional right, but a bill like this is drumming up a lot of concern.

"I also believe that our right to keep and bear arms should include knives," Bell said.

Some say it promotes safety for citizens and police, while others believe it would do just the opposite.

"I have an 18-year-old daughter who's prohibited by law from carrying a gun. I think she should be able to carry a knife," Bell said.

At Friedman's Army Navy Store, they sell it all, but there could be a few more weapons on the market if this bill is approved.

"Our police have enough problems keeping people safe," said owner Frank Friedman.

In Tennessee, spring-assisted knives are already legal, but switchblades - which have a button and are spring-loaded - are not.

Friedman said he doesn't see the point of putting switchblades and longer knives in people's hands, even though his business could benefit from selling them.

"We don't need people running around with these stuck in their back pocket," he said.

Bell, on the other hand, doesn't see the point in banning them.

"I can't find anything other than hysteria created by Hollywood movies. There is no rational reason," Bell said.

Bell introduced an amendment Monday that would still make it a crime to have switchblades and knives longer than four inches on school campuses.

The bill should go to a Senate vote sometime next week.

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