London is dealing with a wave of violence — its murder rate now topping New York City’s — in spite of the fact that guns are banned in the city. Fortunately, London’s mayor is on the case, instituting strict new knife control policies. As Mayor Sadiq Khan put it: “there is never a reason to carry a knife.”
There are some in the pro-stabbing crowd who claim that a person may have literally dozens of non-murderous reasons to carry a knife. They may even argue that knives are a basic human tool, and have been for thousands of years, and probably every adult in the world uses knives on a regular basis. But this is the kind of propaganda you’d expect to hear from knife-wielding lunatics.
I heartily support Mayor Khan’s initiative. My only concern is that it doesn’t quite go far enough. Even after we have gotten rid of the guns and the knives, we have still left many lethal objects that, by their very existence, may compel otherwise peaceable people to become serial killers. Let’s highlight just a few:
Starting with the most obvious. Cars kill over 1.25 million people around the world every year. They are easily the deadliest objects in existence. You can feel the dark intentions of an automobile as soon as you sit inside one. I know I am not the only one who is regularly overcome with the insatiable desire to run down pedestrians. The only thing that stops me — or stops the car, which has me in its evil grasp — is that most roads in America are Vehicular Homicide Free Zones. But what if I ever cross paths with a cyclist as I’m driving down an unregulated dirt road? He is as good as dead. And I will be as much a victim as the guy I just flattened in the dirt. Cars have this effect on people. It is time for some common sense car regulations.
2. All other kitchen utensils.
There is never a reason to have a knife. Neither is there a reason to have a fork or a spoon or, God forbid, a spork. Just last year a woman was attacked with a fork in D.C. Months before that, a man was stabbed repeatedly with a fork in Michigan. Last week I stepped on a fork in my kitchen. Fork-violence is the epidemic nobody is talking about.
3. Office supplies.
Hardly a day goes by when you don’t hear about someone being injured or killed in a pencil attack or scissors attack or stapler attack. Office Depot is nothing but an arsenal for domestic terrorists. The blood of millions of pencil victims is on their hands.
If you don’t think chairs are a dangerous weapon, watch the WWE sometime. It’s fine for professional wrestlers to use chairs, but the shocking reality is this: millions of untrained people — including children — use these lethal weapons every day without any regulation at all. The result? There’s a new case of chair assault every week. It’s estimated (by me) that around 80,000 people are hit with assault-style chairs every year, and half of them die from their injuries. Indeed, every person who uses a chair will die. Eventually.
A rock can kill you in dozens of different ways. People are killed by thrown rocks and falling rocks. They are killed rock climbing. They are killed at rock concerts. A really big rock wiped out the dinosaurs. And yet the average person has completely unfettered access to free and unlicensed rocks. Believe it or not, it is easier to obtain a rock than a stalk of celery.
It would not be difficult or impractical to dig up and confiscate every rock on the Earth and under the Earth. Of course, every structure built of stone (or brick or wood, which obviously must be banned as well) would need to be torn down and replaced with tents. Well, maybe not tents. Tent poles are often used in violent massacres. But replaced with something. Inflatable igloos, perhaps.
Only six years ago, a teacher at a school in Seattle threw a copy of “The Odyssey” at an unsuspecting student. The child survived physically, but the emotional trauma drove her into a life of destitution and drug abuse (I assume). Just yesterday I read a story about a judge “throwing the book” at a convicted criminal. Book-throwings happen on a daily basis, but the media, beholden to the Book Lobby, refuses to report on this scourge.
One other thing to consider about books: while the book itself is a blunt object that may be used to bludgeon someone to death, each individual page comes equipped with a razor sharp edge that can slice through your skin and sever an artery. I lost a cousin that way, as far as you know.
The human hand kills more people every year than shotguns. Arguably, a hand is involved in most every murder and act of violence in the world. Hands can punch, hands can slap, hands can strangle, hands can even sometimes engage in nonconsensual tickling. The hand’s reign of terror must come to an end. There is no reason for a person to have hands. We must look with suspicion on any person who insists on having hands. Consider this: snakes don’t have hands, and they’ve never hurt anybody.
Am I proposing that every person should have to chop off their hands? No, don’t be silly. I propose that every person be required to fill out a series of legal documents describing what exactly they plan to do with their hands, and then obtain all of the proper licenses and certifications for any approved hand activity. Unlicensed hands will be temporarily confiscated while the offending person attends mandatory hands training course. Once they can demonstrate a proper understanding of, and respect for, State-sanctioned hand usage, they will be given back their hands for a probationary period.
This is just common sense.
(I, of course, will be exempt from all of the policies I have just suggested.)