Be Prepared, But No Packing: English Scouts Told Not To Carry Penknives to End “Knife Culture”

140px-Norman_Rockwell-_Beyond_the_Easel180px-Swiss_Army_Knife_Wenger_Opened_20050627Scouts in England have been told that they are no longer allowed to carry their classic penknives in a move against a “knife culture” by English officials. Both scouts and their parents are asked not to carry knives so not to foster criminal images.

Dave Budd, a knife-maker who runs courses training Scouts, explained the new policy: “The series of high-profile fatal stabbings [has] highlighted a growing knife culture in the UK. I think it is safest to assume that knives of any sort should not be carried by anybody to a Scout meeting or camp, unless there is likely to be a specific need for one. In that case, they should be kept by the Scout leaders and handed out as required.”

That might address the perceived “knife culture” but, with all due respect, how about the culture of utter lunacy gripping England? I seriously doubt that whatever “knife culture” the Scouts are facing are seriously advanced with the appearance of Swiss army knives equipped with bottle screws and tiny saws.

Nevertheless, the Scouts insisted: “We believe that young people need more places to go after school and at weekends, where they can experience adventure without the threat of violence or bullying and the need to carry weapons. Scouting helps to prepare young people with valuable life skills, while keeping them safe by not carrying knives.”

There is still no data available on serial Swiss Army knife killers in England but there are reports, that after Jack the Ripper killed his victims, he was known to pick their teeth and file their nails with his Swiss Army knife.

During my brief stint as a cub scout leader, I never saw the Scout “I’ll Cut You Man” culture, but it might just be an English thing.

For the full story, click here.

15 thoughts on “Be Prepared, But No Packing: English Scouts Told Not To Carry Penknives to End “Knife Culture””

  1. Suggest you check your facts before jusy accepting “stories” from others…
    Here is an excerpt from a response to the “story” that appeared in the aforementioned British “newspaper” from Wayne Bulpit, who is the UK Chief Commissioner of Scouting:

    The truth about Scouts and knives (07/09/2009)

    Never before has the saying “never let the truth get in the way of a good story” been true than the current media coverage about Scouts banning knives. We haven’t and I thought you might appreciate a quick heads up before we circulate a more detailed response. A Mail on Sunday journalist approached us on Friday having read the latest guidance we issued in Scouting Magazine/online in December 08 and April 09 on advising Scouts on the situations in which they can use a knife as part of normal Scout Activities. He was looking to make the story into “Scouts Ban knives shocker”. The media team took them through the facts and sent them links to our various documents and magazine articles giving him the following info, – The Rules changed about wearing knives with uniform in 1968 – We have issued regular guidance to the Movement on this matter ever since 1968 e.g. early 1980’s , 1996, 2008 and 2009 (the latest being the magazine article in April/May) – We need to support leaders with information to help them support young people Despite making these facts available the Mail on Sunday published the piece, They used a few selective statements and quotes some out of context.. A number of newspapers this morning (Times, Telegraph, Express, Mirror, Sun) have taken the text from the Mail on Sunday (without talking to us) and have run with the story. We are busy taking all the opportunities today to put the record straight via broadcast opportunities. Hope this explanation helps reassure you. More detailed update now available at: More about my great Scouting xperiences over the last 4 days a little later, Wayne

  2. From outlawing Scout knives to attempting to claim the Haggis
    (they claim it is an english dish from the 16th century)is Scotch
    Whisky safe or will they also claim it, along with Bicycles, rubber tyres, raincoats, paved roads, postage stamps, the Bank of England
    and numerous other things Scottish.

    I think they are a bit confused and searching for something, but they know not what.

  3. They should also take away ropes…those boys don’t need to get any rope burns (What if they decide to play tug of war? Someone could get hurt!
    And what good are rope tying skills anyways? They’re as useless as knowing how to handle a pocket knife properly!

    Let’s just make Boy Scouts much safer and also take away matches, so that they don’t burn down any buildings or tents!

    That or just eliminate Scouts entirely, as it’s just too dangerous!!

  4. I just had to comment when I broke out in laughter at: “I’ll Cut You Man” Culture!

    I’ve always loved your appearances on Countdown, Jonathan, and when I was reading something on the web and looked at the author’s picture I thought to myself, “wow, that kind of looks like Jonathan Turley.”

    I was thrilled to realize it is you, and that you not only have a blog, it is a very very good one. From your dead-shot yet scholarly Constitutional analysis on MSNBC, I figured you were way too straight-laced to have such an interesting blog. I’m please and a little excited to find that you’re every bit as much an Internet Blog God as PZ Myers himself.

    1. TMAX:

      Welcome to the blog. Indeed, this site often looks at the irreverent side of the law and occasionally the simply bizarre. You will find the regulars to be an insightful and fun crowd to hang around with.


  5. The British government assume we are all stupid and incapable of looking after ourselves, needing to be told at all times what we can and can’t do.
    They suck. I don’t know why they can’t leave people alone and just deal with people actually breaking the law

  6. “I think it is safest to assume that knives of any sort should not be carried by anybody to a Scout meeting or camp, unless there is likely to be a specific need for one. In that case, they should be kept by the Scout leaders and handed out as required.”

    This is the main point, in my opinion. England doesn’t want anyone thinking for themseleves (the ability to decide when and were it is appropriate to use a UTILITY knife) and they want everyone to ask permission from the state to do anything without thinking for themselves (anytime they “need” a knife, the Scout leaders pass them out).

    An unarmed populace without critical thinking skills? MUCH easier to govern, don’t ‘ya think?

  7. It occurs to me to ask the regulars this: Is England becoming the Texas of the EU?

    I think you can make that case . . .

  8. Next up, Britain bans high places to discourage “jumping to their death” culture. Following that, there will be a moratorium on pointed sticks. Coming soon, a ban on “hand culture”. Hands, which can notoriously be used to throw rocks or even pummel someone with directly, are a danger to society and must be outlawed.

    You’ve all lost your damn minds, haven’t you, Land of Churchill?

    Or should I just forget that and start calling you the Land of Orwell and Moore?

    Every day, a visit to Europe looks less and less likely to include a trip to Britain.

    Enjoy your CCTV cameras. Hammerheads.

  9. It must be the Foreign Legion 5 in 1 chow set that’s given them the fright. Brief stint. Is that more lawyer talk…

  10. Instead of stigmatizing knifes and making them that more enticing to the youth of England perhaps it would be wise to allow the Scouts to continue teaching kids about knifes and how to properly handle them.

  11. You know Prof some values are cultural, however, I do not think that the scouts have changed that much. I believe that they still espouse values that are even unprecedented in our present military. They are not to be the training camp for the military. Maybe some have them confused with the youth for Hitler and what they can become. Benedict anyone?

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