Sunday, April 24, 2016

Oklahoma Knife law Reform goes to Governor Fallin

The restoration of the right to keep and carry weapons continues in Oklahoma.  On 20 April, SB 1159 was sent to Governor Mary Fallin for consideration.

The infringement on the carry of weapons had been put into law not long after Oklahoma became a state in 1907, during the early "progressive" era.    There are several sections listed in the 1921 Oklahoma Criminal Code,  pages 523 to 525, published in 1921.  The sections covering the carry of weapons are sections 1798 through 1806.

1798 is the state constitutional guarantee of right to keep and bear arms, which then perversely grants the legislature the power to regulate the carry of arms.  1799 forbids the carry of concealed weapons; 1800 forbids the carry of weapons at all, which seems to make 1799 redundant.  Both statutes list several types of knives specifically.

1802 grants exception from the law to all public officials in the course of their duties, or while travelling from their homes to their place of duty, though it forbids them to do so while intoxicated. 1803 lists exceptions to the prohibition on the carry of weapons for people who are not public officials, for rifles and shotguns while hunting, travelling, and on their own property.

Section 1806 also seems redundant; it forbids the carry of deadly weapons or dangerous instruments openly or secretly whatsoever, with the intent or avowed purpose of  injuring his fellow man, reminiscent of Vermont code.

Oklahoma seems to have grabbed considerable code from other states shortly after statehood, and this may account for the seeming inconsistency and redundancy. 

Legislators of the last several years have done a great deal to make Oklahoma law more consistent while restoring Second Amendment rights. SB 1159 finishes the work done in 2015 when the legislature restored the right to keep and carry automatic knives.  The automated knife prohibition was likely added in the 1950s.

SB 1159 removes the complete prohibition on the carry of the types of knives named in the law. Line through indicates removal.  From SB 1159(pdf):
A. It shall be unlawful for any person to carry upon or about
his or her person, or in a purse or other container belonging to the
person, any pistol, revolver, shotgun or rifle whether loaded or
unloaded or any dagger, bowie knife, dirk knife, sword cane,
blackjack, loaded cane, billy, hand chain, metal knuckles, or any
other offensive weapon, whether such weapon be concealed or
unconcealed, except this section shall not prohibit:
Knife Rights deserves considerable credit for the passage of this bill.  From
April 19, 2016: Knife Rights' Oklahoma Knife Law Reform bill, SB 1159, was passed by the House 76-5. It was previously passed unanimously by the Senate. The bill now goes to Governor Mary Fallin for signature. 
Oklahoma will join a number of other states that have removed unconstitutional infringements on the carry of knives and other common arms.  Wisconsin did so a few months ago.

In 2015, Governor Fallin signed the bill that restored the right to carry automatic knives.  It seems likely that she will sign SB 1159 as well.  By my count, she has until the 2nd of May, 2016, to sign, veto, or allow the bill to become law.

©2016 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
Link to Gun Watch

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