New York City to Ban Awls

First they came for the sodas—wait, actually, first they came for the black people. But after the City mounted a sophisticated campaign to harass and subjugate basically all non-white people, up to and including Forest Whitaker, then they came for the sodas.

Now, the New York City council is going to vote to forbid the possession of awls by minors and young adults of voting age. We are not even joking, somehow.

Peter Vallone, Jr., is the sponsor of this piece of legislation, which we think appears before the full City Council today at 1:30 p.m. (We say “we think” because the City Council published a blank agenda for today, which is a remarkable and sneaky trick!)

The legislation goes like this: “A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to banning the sale of awls to persons under twenty-one years of age, open displays of awls by sellers, and possession of awls in a public place by persons under twenty-one years of age, or on school premises by persons under twenty-two years of age.”

This is, essentially, an addition to the law banning boxcutters for all people under 22. (How do young people open boxes?) We feel specially situated to comment upon this addition. In short: we are strongly opposed!

Most people, we find, actually have no idea what an awl is. We regularly find well-educated and lovely people who pronounce “The Awl” as if it were named “The Owl” or “The Ale.” No other three-letter word causes people more anxiety. And now, this legislation will just push awls further underground, at the very least in the province of pronunciation. When only criminals have awls, will The Awl be criminal?

Soon there will be nothing left to legally own in this society, and then we will not be able to pronounce anything.