Monday, February 21, 2005

Knife control hits Japan

Everyone "knows" that Japan is "the safest country" in the universe. Of course, this is said to be partly because of strict gun control laws. Only the police, licensed hunters, the yakuza, and a select few privileged folks may possess a firearm. (Handguns basically outlawed except for the police and the yakuza.)

Unfortunately, there has been a series of murders recently using what must be assault knives. (Swords are also tightly controlled. Sorry, the samurai is long dead.) These are large kitchen knives apparently designed for only one purpose---to slice and stab. One wonders what an ordinary citizen needs with one. You can slice your sushi with a small knife. Well, finally a town has come to its senses and started a "registration" program for buyers of knives which are 15cm or more in length. One must provide his/her name, address, and the reason for purchasing a knife. It is about time we had sensible knife laws in this country. This should immediately reduce stabbing in Japan. As soon as someone about to commit murder tells them he needs one to kill people, the Japanese police will...will...never mind. They won't do anything until the murder occurs. Well, maybe the intended victim can be notified and she can flee for her life. Or, the potential killer would be forced to buy a 14.99 cm knife or smaller, with which he could not kill nor injure anything.

Thank goodness Japan is not like the U.S. where citizens have the right to own guns or even swords!!! If only the U.S. would follow Japan, outlaw guns except for a privileged few (and the Mafia and other organized crime groups), then get the knives. Then, the U.S. will be the "safest country" like Japan. It is so simple.

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