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An absurdity of lawmakers

A culture of bacteria, a gaggle of geese, a confusion of monkeys, a conspiracy of lawyers, an army of caterpillars, a parliament of owls… and an absurdity of lawmakers.

In response to rising violent crime in Britain, our political masters have proposed outlawing the sale of knives to people under 18. I assume that will swiftly be followed by laws requiring all unattended kitchens within every house in Britain containing a person less than 18 years of age be securely locked to prevent access to…


… large and really sharp knives.

Do anything, anything, no matter how self-evidently preposterous, rather than face the intolerable idea that the problem is not thugs with knives but rather victims without the means to effectively defend themselves.

28 comments to An absurdity of lawmakers

  • Expect a ban on sharpened sticks, bananas, and bunches of grapes.

    And maybe mandatory Nerf(tm) suits for everyone.

  • Headlines from 2024:

    Ban on locking doors passed by Parliament
    Parliament today passed a sweeping ban against locking the front door of any British home. Safety reasons were cited:

    “Yeah, sometimes we need to get into a burning house, but the door is locked. This ban makes Britons safer,” said the London Chief of Police.

    Parliament considers banning the human body
    A proposal came up before Parliament today that would require every law-abiding British citizen to have his brain removed and placed in a small robot to prevent fist fights.

    “Every day we get reports of Britons assaulting one another even after we banned guns, knives, blunt instruments, and automobiles. People still have their hands and feet, and are using them against one another. And think of the accidents caused every day by the use of hands! It’s a strain on the health care system, it is!” said the London Chief of Police.

    Parliament bans thinking about violence
    “And we wouldn’t have any violent actions in our society if we didn’t have any violent thinking. When we remove the brain to put it into the robots, we’ll install an inhibitor chip that will prevent the British citizens from even thinking about defending themselves against intruders,” the London Chief of Police added.

  • lucklucky

    PENCIL sharpeners have been banned from a primary school after a pupil dismantled one and used the blade to slash another child’s neck….


  • zmollusc

    I reckon screwdrivers should be banned next, they are a burglar’s friend. Use them as a crowbar to pry at windows and doors, then use them to puncture anyone who gets in your way. And you can open cans of treacle.

  • Chris Goodman

    Headlines from 2024

    The Ultimate Solution

    Studies indicating that life is ultimately fatal have led the government to declare birth illegal.

    In a press release Minister for Information Gordon Gob said, “It is common sense. Death is distressing for all concerned. Preventing conception is the only sure way of solving this problem.”

    Perry de Havilland the controversial ex-minister [who served six month sentence last year for wilfully endangering lives by advocating the use of clotted cream] denounced the move “I marched against the ‘Ban the Bun’ and if returned to power will revoke any law which criminalises people who behave in ways that may lead to the birth of children”.

    The Government Information Service released figures that show that although death will eventually lead to a fall in revenues, the government in the short term will be able to divert more resources to pensioners.

    Late News

    Claire Short wins Nobel Prize for Physics.

  • David Hall

    You look scary with that knife. I call for a government ban of people who look scary holding knives. Who’s with me?!

  • I wouldd laugh at Chris’ solution, except I’ve read that there’s an organization in, I think, San Francisco that is dedicated to human extinction as a way of preserving the environment. To return to the main subject, I remember seeing an eminent British philosopher on television suggesting methods of defending oneself against an attacker armed with fresh fruit. The markets being open to all (one hopes), shouldn’t the frightened British masses then arm themselves with bananas, loganberries (a berry bred originally by an American judge with too much time on his hands), and possibly guavas and take a stand against the rising tide of outlawry that disturbs the Queen’s Peace in such an egregious manner?

  • Tom Bosworth, Milwaukee

    That looks like a skull crusher on the butt of that (probably unregistered) assault knife. Why does he have a skull crusher? Does Great Britain really allow people to walk around the kitchen with a skull crusher? Look at that smile: he’s likely looking for some poor innocent to do unspeakable things to. Any reasonable interpretation of the Precautionary Principle would require he prove that he can’t cut or crush anything with that horrifying instrument. And there are at least two containers of a regulated substance next to him. My God. He probably ingests regulated substances, then cuts up corpse frags of Bovine-Britannians and eats them. He may even serve them to unsuspecting guests.

  • Tom Bosworth, Milwaukee

    That looks like a skull crusher on the butt of that (probably unregistered) assault knife. Why does he have a skull crusher? Does Great Britain really allow people to walk around the kitchen with a skull crusher? Look at that smile: he’s likely looking for some poor innocent to do unspeakable things to. Any reasonable interpretation of the Precautionary Principle would require he prove that he can’t cut or crush anything with that horrifying instrument. And there are at least two containers of a regulated substance next to him. My God. He probably ingests regulated substances, then cuts up corpse frags of Bovine-Britannians and eats them. He may even serve them to unsuspecting guests.

  • zem

    The families of some stabbing victims want a 5 year sentence for anyone found carrying a knife.

    That’s the same penalty as for carrying a gun. Thus giving rational burglars a neat incentive to upgrade.

  • Mashiki

    Either that or downgrade to a simple tire iron or baseball bat. Nothing like good old blunt force trama to do the work over slash and stab wounds. I mean really now, how hard does it have to be to think this stuff up?

    If I was a criminal, I’d drop the knife and grab something else. So on and so forth, this is excessive regulation and excessive law creation.

  • I’m not normally one to state the bleedin’ obvious, but if no-one were to do so, this moronic, half-witted government might never notice it, so…

    Anyone undeterred from causing injury by the existence of a law forbidding it is unlikely to be deterred by the existence of a law forbidding the carrying of the means to cause such injury. Possessing or carrying a knife is not the problem; sticking it into someone is, and that is already illegal.

    The notion that the injuring of others can be prevented by forbidding the carrying of items capable of doing so leads to the prohibition of virtually everything, including hands.

    Given that knives have many other uses than causing injury, the assumption should be that, unless there is good evidence to the contrary, I am carrying one for legal purposes. I should not have to explain to anyone why I am doing so, any more than I should have to explain why I am carrying a pound of cheese, four daffodils and an armadillo.

  • Richard Garner

    The Channel 4 News story on this included referrence to one campaigner who’s son had been stabbed for his mobile phone. It did not, of course, include any referrences to people who have stabbed others to get their phones back!

    On the plus side, though, even the presenter and the Lib Dems were scathing of the proposals.

  • This sort of thing has popped up already, in Scotland:
    Link to BBC.
    It seems that the Scots Parliament would like to ban swords as well, for some reason.
    Various groups are protesting about this, but it’s a bit difficult as it seems that no concrete proposal has yet been written down concerning the effect swords.

  • And we should probably ban education as well, you know, and books in particular! People – including teenagers!, are using books, yes BOOKS (despite all the efforts of the public schooling, some are still able to read), to learn how to do all sorts of dangerous and nefarious things. For God’s sake, people could learn Chemistry and Physics from books, and these, form the very foundation for creating Weapons of Mass Destruction! You don’t want your local teenage thugs running around with Weapons of Mass Destruction, do you now?

  • Yes, Weasel, but does your armadillo have an offensive capability? That, I think, is the salient question here. Could your average British outlaw use an armadillo to commit armed robbery? Or worse yet, could a homeowner defend life, limb, and property with a fully equipped armadillo against an outlaw with a knife, gun, or possibly an aardvark? Given this possibility, look for the state to demand all homeowners to surrender their armadillos by the end of next year or face a stiff prison sentence.

  • NickL


    I believe the eminent British philosopher you are referring to is John Cleese as the Sgt:

    What’s wrong with fruit? You think you know it all, eh?

    Can’t we do something else?

    Idle (Welsh):
    Like someone who attacks you with a pointed stick?

    Pointed stick? Oh, oh, oh. We want to learn how to defend ourselves against pointed sticks, do we? Getting all high and mighty, eh? Fresh fruit not good enough for you eh? Well I’ll tell you something my lad. When you’re walking home tonight and some great homicidal maniac comes after you with a bunch of loganberries, don’t come crying to me! Now, the passion fruit. When your assailant lunges at you with a passion fruit…

    We done the passion fruit.

    Or possibly you already knew this and I’m just stating the bleeding obvious and missing the subtle humour!

    And now for something completely different…

  • “does your armadillo have an offensive capability?”

    Obviously akaky has never been smacked over the head with an armadillo.

    My point, as I’m sure you realise, is that once again we see legislation which only seems to be effective. “Something must be done, this is something, let’s do it.” Three-inch knives are to be banned despite the fact that a) two-inch knives can be used to kill people and b) three-inch knives can be used to rescue girls tied to railway tracks. No-one seems to be willing to tell us why.

  • Tony H

    Came to this debate late. Wacky knife laws are nothing new in UK: I wrote about them more than once for the UK shooting press some years ago.
    Blades over three inches have been suspect for quite a while. I know that an appeal case in 1998 or earlier held that a folding knife with a locking blade is not an exempt knife, even if the cutting edge of the blade
    is less than 3 inches. Locking blades – which many would consider an essential safety feature in a working knife – are looked upon with disfavour…
    The outcome of the case was that if any knife has a blade that locks open, and some button or catch has to be operated in order to close the blade, then the knife is not a “folding knife”, despite its having a cutting edge of less than 3″.

    Essentially, (though I’m no expert on knife laws) you can carry any ordinary pocket knife with a blade length of 3 inches or less without restriction. Any other knife you must have a valid reason to be carrying,
    such as you require it for your job or other activity. This has been rather narrowly defined in various court decisions. However, carrying a hunting knife while hunting is okay. Phew!

    A serving policeman told me that ANY knife which you have no good excuse for having will land you in it if the copper is in the mood…apparently that’s the way the law is written.
    The Criminal Justice Act 1988 says that an “ordinary folding pocketknife” is not an offensive weapon, so you don’t have to show any reason as to
    why you are carrying it. However, if a constable is satisfied that you are carrying it for an illegal purpose, well, then you’re in trouble. Hey ho.

  • Tony H

    BTW I forgot to mention that the armadillo thing is not necessarily a piece of innocent fun: given the UK’s laws on “offensive weapons” (it is absolutely no argument in law that you were carrying something purely for self-defence) if a police officer decides you are carrying that armadillo in order to commit an act of violence or intimidation with it – no matter if it’s to defend yourself from armadillo-fearing thugs – then you’re in hot water for carrying an offensive weapon. Seriously. I await with interest the first test case.

  • My company’s cafeteria provides not only plastic knives but (gasp) plastic FORKS!

  • Sombra Negra

    Greetings from Stateside.

    RE: The bit about the pencil-sharpener: That child should be involved in the space program. I would’ve never thought to do such a thing, when i was school. Fair play to him.

    RE: Parliment bans locking doors, etc.: My mother never locked her front door as a child. Not because Philadelphia was Utopian in those days, but because lots of Italians with bats were more discouraging than a society of laws. That thing of theirs worked, for a time.

    I wonder if all this “Blame the Victim” nonsense will find it’s way in to other aspects of our lives; just imagine all the money we’d save if we executed sick people instead of having doctors and hospitals?
    After all, a strong immune system is everyone’s personal responsibility.


  • Paul

    Gad, and here I sit in Texas, at work, with a 3.5 inch Spyderco knife in my pocket and my Glock 26 in the car (all legal.)

    Surely the English people will say ‘enough’. Not 100 years ago your nation was THE ruler of the oceans and a .455 was considered a fine friend when about.

  • craggy_steve

    Re: Screwdrivers,one of my near neighbours was stabbed repeatedly in the head and neck with one about three years ago. Fortunately she survived.

    Screwdrivers should obviously be banned or licenced. They’re clearly offensive.

  • This story is not really about knives.

    It is about the contemporary fashion for politicians to genuflect to the demands of the bereaved; as though losing a family member makes the bereaved person a moral authority whose demand for a “ban” (or the spending of vast sums of money) to prevent “others” dying in the same way, must be obeyed without question.

  • Euan Gray

    It is about the contemporary fashion for politicians to genuflect to the demands of the bereaved

    Funny how political fashion changes. When most people were more or less religious and believed in an afterlife, death was not taboo but sex was. Now apparently everyone is far too clever to be religious and so talk about sex incessantly and to the point of tedium – but fear to discuss death and seem afraid even to discuss anything that brings it about.


  • Euan, some people dont want the good times to end, and they dont want to think about the possible consequences, just in case the believers are right about that part of Pascal’s wager.

  • m

    well after being held up twice by cunts with knives & one of my friends being stabbed to death by some other little shit with a knife I’m pretty into the idea of attempting to stop them. It depends where you live as to your opinion. If your argument is to carry a bigger knife to protect yourself, it’s pretty flawed, because the sort of people that hold you up are the sort that will only hold you up if you are vastly out gunned & out numbered. I think the real problem is that after being held up by 5 shits with knives I then duly went to the police who went on a drive around, I saw the lads at the side of the road, said to the cops ‘thats them’, they said how sure are you? I said 90% (the cops had left the light on in the car so the muggers could see me better than i could them), they said that I had to be 99% sure because these lads were black & it was not worth their while getting into some potentially racial hot water (this happened in the UK). I shit you not.
    I’m not one to say bring back the suss laws but there are problems with knives among the black youth to the extent that the community groups of the parents of black youth are begging the police to start searching.
    Cant see the problem I have been stopped & searched a few times