The Cutting EdgeOpinion
OPINION — You know that scene in a horror movie, where the young girl is home alone at night, and she hears a noise in the basement, so she decides to go down there and check it out, even though she knows there’s a murderer loose in the area, and murderers in horror movies love to hide in basements waiting for young girls? And even though everyone in the theater, or buying popcorn in the lobby, or driving by on the street, or sleeping in another country knows the killer is down there, the girl doesn’t know it? So she goes down the creaky stairs anyway, and the light doesn’t come on when she flips the switch, so she uses a flashlight, as if killers don’t know they’re supposed to unscrew the bulb? And when she gets to the bottom of the stairs a cat jumps out and scares her, so she realizes that’s what made the noise? And then when she turns to go back up the stairs, the killer is standing there with a knife the size of a ’57 Chevy? That young girl is England.
For years the Brits have been trying to control crime by controlling the devices used in crimes. It doesn’t work. Everyone in the theater knows it doesn’t work. Everyone buying popcorn knows it doesn’t work. For sure criminals know it doesn’t work. There’s no way to control each and every device used in crime. If, somehow, the laws of physics and the universe and everything were suspended, and all the devices ever used for crime were actually controlled, one of two things would happen. Either the people who control the devices would commit crimes, or new devices would pop up. Guaranteed.
First it was guns. The Brits decided guns were too dangerous for the subjects to own, so they took almost all of them away. Violent crime went up. This is where the young girl hears the noise, and decides to go check it out. Gun crime didn’t go up much, but other violent crime did, and the devices used weren’t guns, because the government had conveniently disarmed the victims. The criminals didn’t need guns when their victims couldn’t shoot them, so they used knives and pipes and rocks and such.
So the Brits had a choice. They could admit they were making a mistake, nail the basement door shut, and go spend the night with the neighbors, or they could go down in the basement and check out the noise. The Brits should’ve realized they’d made crime easier for criminals, and let citizens have their guns back to protect themselves, but they didn’t. This is the mentality of denial. When something doesn’t work, the solution is to do more of it. So that’s what the Brits did.
They decided to ban knives. At first it was kind of a voluntary thing, and British subjects were encouraged to turn their knives in to police. But knife crime kept rising. The homicide rate has been rising for the past four years, and is higher than it’s been since records began seventy years ago. So they upped the ante. It’s now a criminal act to use a knife in self defense, even if someone is trying to murder you with a bigger knife, or a lawn mower, or a car, or a gun. What the Brits did was make self-defense illegal.
This is where the girl flips the switch, and the light doesn’t come on. You’d think Britain would figure out their plan was about as realistic as Michael Moore’s pizza weight loss program, but no. When something doesn’t work, do more of it. So the Brits started installing bins all over the country, where people could get rid of their knives. Just drop them in the box, even if you’re a felon and the knife was used in a murder. No questions asked. No deposit, no sad songs, and no return.
This is where the cat jumps out. When I saw the cat, I said, “Now, if I were a criminal in Britain, besides having a British accent, I would also now have a ready supply of knives to use in future crimes. All I’d have to do would be to steal a couple of those bins, and I’d be fixed for life.” Which is what the people buying popcorn in the lobby said. But the Brits have a remarkably poor grasp of the obvious.
British authorities were shocked when some of the bins were stolen, just like the girl is shocked when she turns around and sees Jason standing there. How could this happen? We thought we finally had it all figured out. We had noble intentions, even though we had the foresight of macaroni. Nothing we did worked, so we did it more, and even shook our tea-stained fingers at the subjects, telling them to play nice. It didn’t work, because it never works.
So now the Brits have managed to supply some of their criminals with the means to commit more crimes. And the guy in the lobby is buying more popcorn, because the show is far from over.
Maybe the Brits should just make crime illegal . . .
Get more stories like this by signing up for our daily newsletter, The LIVE! Daily.