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ANNOUNCEMENTS
  • Spring Break from April 8th-12th.
  • HSSC Baseball Game @Samsung Lions Park on April 4th.
  • [HS] Friendly Match Soccer vs. DMHS @Camp Walker on April 2nd.
  • Don't forget your spirit shirts on Friday.
The Student News Site of Daegu International School

Jets Flyover

The Student News Site of Daegu International School

Jets Flyover

Joy and safety in the balance due to children’s toy craze

Carrot knife falls under the purview of Korean school administrators amidst trend

Children carved out trouble for themselves when they brought popular new toy knives to schools in Korea over the past few months. Known as the “carrot knife” in English, 당근칼 is a plastic toy knife that operates similarly to the classic fidget spinner but resembles a switchblade. Consumers can easily purchase the toy on the internet or at local stores. Advanced flickers of the toy film and share videos on how to spin them stylishly like professional knife performers

Children can easily access and watch various social media tutorials on how to spin and fidget with the carrot knife. Graphic by Christine Park.

Korean citizens grow increasingly concerned as the toy serves as a reminder of the motiveless stabbing rampages (묻지마 칼부림 사건) that haunted Korea’s public transport last summer. Over hundreds of anonymous netizens threatened to go on a stabbing rampage publically and left the community on edge, unsure of when or where the next attack might occur. As the nation struggles to heal, a collective call for increased vigilance and measures of protection calls out against the toy, which models a switchblade.

Early on exposure to plastic models of weapons may induce desensitization to real violence. Mr. Vis, the elementary school principal, said, “It is a really clear, obvious example of a toy that is absolutely inappropriate because it represents something real that is always dangerous and always inappropriate in the hands of a child.” 

“Objects are created to fit their intended purpose. Iron rulers, for instance, aren’t manufactured with the intent of harm. If such rulers are used to measure, even if they are made of iron, I feel like that’s okay. But the carrot knife came out in the form of a knife. Though knives’ actual purpose is mostly cooking, they’re used for criminal purposes these days. The shape of the toy can be problematic in that way because they may increase copycat crimes,” said Ms. Ahn, a fifth-grade teacher at Haesseo Elementary School. 

The toy went viral at the end of 2023. DIS students took part in the fad as well. Mr. Vis said, “I asked all of the elementary school teachers if they had seen the carrot knife toy at school this year. About a third said yes, and two-thirds said no.”

The carrot knife can be purchased and delivered in a day. Though children must be over 14 to make a legal purchase, anyone can find it anywhere. Photo by Raina Lee.

Over the past few months, the gadget made local news of its dangerous nature. Schools advised parents and children against its possession on campus. “When I asked [teachers] if any of them had seen the carrot knife at school since returning from winter break, no one had seen the toy here at school. It means that they are not currently visible, which is good,” said Mr. Vis.

On the other hand, critics argue that overprotective adults make a fuss over a harmless toy. “I think [people] are concerned that we will also play with a real knife. But my opinion is that it’s kind of like a fidget and not so sharp. It’s just plastic. It’s not dangerous,” said Henry Lee in 5th grade.

Teenagers believe that the issue lies elsewhere. Responsibility should be placed on violent users, not the toy. “[Getting stabbed by the knife] does hurt, but not seriously. The situation in which kids are bullying other kids by stabbing them with the carrot knife is not the toy’s fault, but the bully’s fault,” said Lee. In response to rising concerns, the Office of Education decided to ban students in Korean schools from bringing the carrot knife to school in concern of possible violence and injuries. 

Previously, the carrot knife could only be purchased by those 14 years of age or older. As stores started handing the toy to children without an ID check, the Office of Education started to enforce such previous laws and even issued its ban in academic environments. Graphic by Christine Park and Luna Kang.

As the number of stabbing crimes surged last summer, citizens grew increasingly concerned about the use of blades. Elementary students require continued care from adults, particularly in regards to toy knives. Ahn said, “While there are students who listen to our instructions well, most of the children are not following our guides. I think that’s why the Office of Education restricted bringing the carrot knife to school.” With proper guidelines and informed attitudes, the whole fiasco may just come to a smooth end, like a hot knife through butter.

View Comments (7)
About the Contributor
Raina Lee, Multimedia Director
Raina Lee returns for her second year of journalism as the Multimedia Director. She hopes to elevate the Flyover presence on and off campus and inspire budding Jets with her writing, designs, and photography. On top of her leadership role, she strives to continue writing articles across genres from opinion polls to social issues. Outside of the classroom, she vibes to music, pops by trendy shops, watches sports, and constantly looks for journalistic inspiration.
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Comments (7)

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  • V

    VoltFeb 28, 2024 at 6:30 pm

    I didn’t think that is would relate to the real event. I should be aware of this knife.

    Reply
  • M

    MinjuFeb 28, 2024 at 6:29 pm

    This is so shocking that toys that children play with is so dangerous!

    Reply
  • A

    AidenFeb 28, 2024 at 6:26 pm

    I never heard of this but it does sound kind of dangerous for random kids having this

    Reply
  • M

    Min KimFeb 28, 2024 at 6:25 pm

    I think that it is not that dangerous for the kids because it is not that sharp. But I partly think that it should be banned.

    Reply
  • M

    Mary KongFeb 28, 2024 at 6:25 pm

    I think blocking the toy knife is too overprotective toward the kids.

    Reply
  • P

    PaulFeb 28, 2024 at 6:23 pm

    Omg

    Reply
  • P

    PyoFeb 28, 2024 at 6:23 pm

    I didn’t know what the carrot name was and it was interesting to learn that we have to be order 14 years old to purchase it.

    Reply