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Re: Sharp Knives

! At 1:38 PM 9/2/96, Dave Harman OBC wrote:
! >In California, it's a felony to merely *own* a Ninja star.  It's a
! >felony to carry a *concealed* knife, but carrying it openly in a
! >holster is legal.  It's a felony for most people to carry a
! >concealed loaded handgun on the street only on a *second* offense.
! >It'a a felony to merely *own* a switchblade, brass knuckles, etc.
! >Do our weapons laws sound strange?  Are many of our weapons laws
! >stricter than countries like Sweden?  Yes!
! Most laws about knives, dirks, daggers, brass knuckles, saps, etc. were
! devised to control the coloreds, who could not afford the weapons of choice
! of whites and other gentlemen.
! Hence, a colored who gets picked up on some charge, or detained, can be
! jailed on a felony charge for having a pocketknife, or a sap, or brass
! knucks. Coloreds from Asia can be jailed for having the martial arts sorts
! of weapons.
! A white gets a misdemeanor charge for carrying a gun.

Of course, whites never commit other crimes, are never on the 
proscribed categories, and people of colour never carry guns or are
never free of being classified as being in the proscribed categories.  You
sound like Skippy making fun of the McClatchy newspapers.

! (This analysis is not original with me. The gun magazines have noted the
! racist origins of misdemeanor/felony dichotomies for many years. One
! article I read a few years ago traced the precise times at which these laws
! came into being...mostly the times in various states corresponded with
! periods of high immigration of coloreds to major cities.)
! Here in California there's a bill pending in the legislature which would
! decriminalize the carrying of a pocketknife that can be opened with one
! hand (a la the Spyderco, Benchmade, Buck, Cold Steel, etc., knives with
! thumb holes or studs). Even though such knives are openly sold in every
! sporting goods store I have ever been in, and are carrried by a truly large
! fraction of the population, such knives are currently classified as
! "switchblades" and can be prosecuted as a felony. A good way to selectively

What?  Are you talking about lockbacks?  An actual switchblade is a
felony to *possess* in California.

! harasss someone. Interestingly, it was the District Attorneys lobbying

I'm familiar with the anti-racist pandering of the gun rights majority.
The weapons mentioned above were banned later this century in 
California, ostensibly to protect minors.  There has always been cheap
firearms available to poor people in America, I'm not aware that only
coloured people can be poor!  It's been a step by step process to take
away rights, it's been entirely irrelevent what the laws were supposedly
for.  It is not believable that all whites are rich or that poor whites
in prison are treated with greater respect than rich people of colour or
poor people of colour.  There's been *both* racist and anti-racist
elements to the progress of unjust laws, the original intent of the law
itself is forgotten if the current law only respects people of capital.
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