Dan Mitchell @ International Liberty:
Back in my less sophisticated days (shocking as it may seem, I wasn’t always the mature, statesmanlike figure I am today), I sometimes resorted to silly arguments when debating gun control, such as, “does this mean you want to ban knives since they also can be used to kill people?”
Smarter opponents would scoff and accuse me of knocking down straw men, assuming a non-existent slippery slope, or engaging in reductio ad absurdum.
I wasn’t even sure what the last one meant, but I secretly felt chagrined because I also thought the argument was nonsense. But it’s not like we had the Internet back in those days so I could quickly peruse the writings of John Lott or David Kopel.
Well, I no longer need to feel shame. It turns out that my straw man came to life and he’s sliding down a slope into a big pool of whatever that reductio thing is.
I kid you not. There’s a supposedly civilized nation that is seriously talking about banning long kitchen knives.
I’ll give you a couple of hints to help you figure out what country is considering this bizarre policy.
- It’s the country that wanted to prevent children from watching Olympic shooting events.
- It’s the country that arrested a man for finding a gun in his yard and turning it over to the police.
- It’s the country that imposed a prohibition on the use of starting pistols at races lest children get frightened by the noise.
Yes, I’m talking about our friends in the United Kingdom.