How a Government Bans Lizards
Imagine you were a government that hated lizards. You thought they were creepy and slimy and you imagined they carried lots of lizard diseases that infected every little crack of society that they were in.
You wouldn’t just come out and ban lizards. That would seem too harsh. That might be unpopular. After all, some people in parliament (who you need the support of) don’t have a problem with lizards. Not to mention the lizard owners in the general public who you want to vote for you.
So you don’t exactly ban lizards. Instead, you talk about the dangers of dinosaurs. You talk about how dinosaurs can eat babies and how they can squash people and are a great threat to society. And who can disagree with you? What type of baby-hating monster would want dinosaurs free to roam the streets?
And then you propose legislation that will bring safety back to the land, vanquish the dinosaurs and provide protection to all. Well, all except those people harboring dinosaurs.
The media calls it the “Dino Ban”. Catchy title. Who could argue with it being a good thing to introduce? Clearly, only those who want to see dinosaurs terrorising the neighbourhood. That’s not YOU is it? I thought not. You want to ban dinosaurs too don’t you?? I thought so.
And then the legislation gets released, and some people actually read it.
And some of those people notice that the legislation defines a “dinosaur” as any scaly, reptilian member of the of the Lacertidae family.
And some of those people speak up and say that this legislation is way too broad and effectively would ban all lizards, altogether.
But the fear of dinosaurs is now too great…
And the pressure to ban them too strong…
So the “Dino Ban” legislation gets passed with very little opposition.
And the little boy who raises his hand and says “Hey, aren’t dinosaurs extinct?” is called a bigot.