Friday, July 11, 2014

Gun registration, break out the chopsticks

Gun registration to chopsticks
Chopsticks | PHOTO CREDIT: Wiki Commons

First gun registration, then knives, then confiscation and household quotas — learn to use chopsticks!

Opponents of the second amendment currently seek stricter, universal background checks and gun registration. Such programs start society along a slippery slope well documented in history and mythology alike.

After forcing gun registration, the next logical step is confiscation of what could be perceived as “scary” to gun-grabbers such as Shannon Watts and Mayor Bloomberg. Knives will come next. They will seek registration of all knives greater than three inches long with an edge that is either serrated or holds a grade sharper than that of a dull butter knife. You will have to place serial numbers on your steak knives. The claim will be it is to protect the children, of course. Parents are too irresponsible to teach their children proper knife use when they come of age. Plus there are all those serial killers and mass assaulting criminals that wield knives.

After the registrations, there will be restrictions and quotas. Should you have more knives than the anti-knife (formerly the anti-gun) lobby perceives as ample, they will be confiscated. You will be left with one sharp knife for cutting meat and vegetables. It will be no more than 5 inches long without a serrated edge. Each house will be allotted one butter knife because, well, some ingenious person may sharpen them. One is all that is necessary at a table.

Soon, even forks may be regulated and reserved for only select uses. Forks (and sporks) have pointy tines. Children could get hurt! Worse, angry lunch ladies may use them as weapons! The next logical step is to ban forks and sporks. That will leave us with only spoons and chopsticks.

There is nothing wrong with chopsticks. Learning to master them is an art form in the west. However, their history is littered with folk tales and myths surrounding how they ended up the utensil of choice in the Orient.
The known facts indicate they started as a utensil for cooking, similar to a skewer used in fondue. Between metal shortages and mandates from monarchs, they became eating utensils. One tale marks the move as Confucius’s idea. Confucius was a vegetarian. His claim was knives at a table reminded people of their old, barbaric days of slaughtering animals for meat.

Another legend states a Chinese Emperor ordered his court to eat with only chopsticks at state dinners in order to avoid bloodshed from infighting. He ordered his cooks to prepare meals already cut small enough to not need knives. Swords, daggers, and other weapons were already banned from the meeting rooms, usually secured in the armory or left with a servant outside. The practice somehow dissuaded assassination attempts and attempted coups.  Somehow the practice spread to lower nobles.  Maintaining power is easier if your potential opponents are preemptively disarmed.

Yet another legend supports similar movements. Metal was needed more for weapons and armor, so it was valuable and scarce. In addition, nobles fearing peasant uprisings restricted knives to one per household, reserved for cooking. More affluent households were allowed one “family sword”, but it was pledged in service to the crown. So families had to resort to spoons and chopsticks to eat. This myth supports the advent of modern “martial arts weapons” which started as farming tools.

The truth is most likely an amalgamation of the above. However, the history matters only as far as the limited access to home defense tools. Many of those tools had more pragmatic uses on a daily basis. Spears, and bows and arrows were used to hunt. People used knives to harvest food as well as preparing it to eat. In modern times, guns are used to hunt. All of these uses are bonus uses, beyond self-defense purposes.
This trend will expand to any household tool that could serve a self-defense purpose, especially if they could harm children if misused or neglected. While we’re at it, let’s ban hammers, saws, and screwdrivers. Let’s initiate background checks and registration of baseball bats, keeping them locked up while not in use. Those who have seen the movie Tangled are aware that frying pans and cast iron skillets are bludgeoning weapons! Register them!

If you don’t know how to use chopsticks yet, it’s time to learn and practice. If Shannon Watts gets her way, that is all you’ll have left at your table with which to eat your tofu.

Luckily, most Americans find her and Moms Demand Action little more than a minor annoyance when not a whimsical target of abject ridicule.