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UK Conservative MP Calls For All Knives to be Registered, Fitted With GPS Trackers

knife
Scott Mann/Creative Commons Licence
VIRGINIA HALE

Tory MP Scott Mann has attracted mockery on social media after calling for strict new knife control measures including for every blade sold in the UK to be fitted with GPS tracking systems.

In a post on the micro-blogging platform Twitter, the representative for North Cornwall went on to declare that Britain should create a “national database” of people who own knives, “like we do with guns”.

Anyone found to have carried a knife outside their property “had better have a bloody good explanation”, Mr Mann wrote, adding that there could be “obvious exceptions” for activities such as fishing.

Responses to the MP’s suggestion included ridicule, as well as many questions not only on the considerable expense of fitting every knife sold with GPS tracking equipment small enough to fit into the handles, but also over the practicality of monitoring tens of millions of knives considering the UK’s high population density and the fact such systems are accurate only to about five metres, or just over 16 feet.

Surging knife violence including a fivefold increase in machete attacks over the past three years has led to a significant crackdown on blades in Britain, with many stores voluntarily taking kitchen knives off the shelves as lawmakers call for an increasing number of restrictions to tackle the problem.

Although the UK already takes a much stricter approach towards the sale and possession of sharp objects than other nations, with authorities last year arresting a man for carrying a potato peeler in a public place “without reasonable excuse”, politicians are regularly urged to do more, such as banning kitchen knives on the basis that ordinary households do not require chef-sharp tools for food preparation.

Breitbart London contacted Mr Mann with a number of questions over his suggestions for tackling knife crime, including asking whether he was aware that GPS trackers require batteries, would go flat if left uncharged by unscrupulous criminally-minded individuals, and could even respond badly to being put in a dishwasher — as kitchen knives often are. 

His office have yet to respond, however, so it currently unclear as to whether Mann would support the position that, by digitising kitchen knives and making them unaffordably expensive for low-income families, that the poorest in society should be excluded from home cooking.

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