A Modest Proposed Bill

I should front load this post with a big fat disclaimer. I’m not sure who it will offend more: its intended targets, or the backhanded villains of the metaphor. At the risk of being controversial, allow me to make a proposal for Arizona. If you legislate the right to discriminate something like the following will happen.

A Modest Proposed Bill

Left and Right

There’s a powerful lobby imposing a sinister agenda on my family. They want to restructure our classrooms, make trouble at the drinking fountains, and put different tools in our teacher’s hands. They want to indoctrinate my children into believing their lifestyle is normal. When my family, with our traditional values, points out the error of their ways, we’re accused of bullying. We’re signaled out for our beliefs.

Running a mom and pop restaurant, I’m in charge of hiring. Since I can’t ask for certain personal details from our applicants, I have to check for all the signs: how they shake hands, the way they’ve tied their tie, and what direction their belt buckle is facing. I can’t have these types of people handling our utensils, going limp on our corkscrews, cutting their fingers on our can openers.

Tending to our garden, we hire our share of day laborers. I’d hate to find I’d invited one of them into my home. They’ve got their own way of doing things. Call me old fashioned, but I shouldn’t be expected to have to support their decision.

I’m, of course, referring to left-handed people.

I’m trying to bring my children up right, as in right-handed. I don’t want them to come home with stories of awkward encounters at the pencil sharpener. I don’t want them in the same class as the kid with the spiral notebook line down his wrist. What if my son comes home asking why his friend has two writing pads? Suddenly my son is ambidextrous-curious. Pretty soon he’ll be asking his coach if he can try on the special glove at baseball practice.

As a small business owner, I don’t want Uncle Sam telling me how to run my kitchen, making me stock up on special tools to enable heathens. I will not be made to embrace your alternative knife style, or your choice to fillet. Adam and Eve knew with which hand to cleave. It’s not my fault that your perverse hand orientation has you looking at the metric side of the measuring cup.

Playing in the backyard, I shouldn’t have to tell my children why one of the gardeners has a queer way of using our hoes, pruners, and potting trowels. Watering with the wrong hand is simply unnatural, yet I’m the bigot for pointing out something that’s factual.

Scissors

This bias against traditional right-handed values is nothing short of discrimination. These lefty leftists are using tolerance to take away the rights of righties. Demanding special treatment, they want us to shift door knob placement. They want us to redesign desks so the boards align with their twisted viewpoints. The government claims to uphold the constitution, but when it comes to religious freedom, it seems like the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing.

In the United States, all pillars of society are under attack. Changing traditional marriage, husband’s offer the wrong hand to their wives. Infiltrating the boy scouts, they teach our sons a left handed hand shake. In our courts, they swear on the bible with the limb they use for libel. Mainline churches are put upon to serve the southpaw over the north when they give communion.

Invading our calendars, they claimed August 13th as their day, soon they’ll want their own parades. Even as I type this, there’s a lefty occupying the oval office.

I’m drawing the line down the center of the road. I’m an American, I drive on the right side of the street. Changing gears, I define traditional leverage as the bond between one hand and one minivan. On one side I turn the ignition, on the other I flip the bird.

I’m tired of these people getting stuck at the checkout counter, stretching the cord for the pen attached to the credit card machine, clogging up my subway turnstiles with their two left feet. I’m sick of scraping their boomerangs off my rooftop, because they don’t know how to throw them right. I’m sick of my tax dollars going to ER visits, for frequent power-saw accidents.

Sorry if we don’t want them in our restaurant, but they nudge the other guests as they bite into their croissants. Sorry if my country club doesn’t swing that way. We hold our putters the correct way. Sorry if we don’t welcome them into our neighborhood, but we had a show of hands and voted for the public good.

Yes, I check my children’s friends for ink on their palms. Children are impressionable. I forbid mine from listening to Cobain, McCartney, or Hendrix because of the way they held their guitar picks. I won’t let them watch anything starring Tom Cruise, not for his religious views, but for the way in which he ties his shoes.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t care what you do in the privacy of your own home, but don’t go waving those reversed digits in front of my kids. Keep your left-handedness in the closet with all your wrong facing garments.

Cork Screws

I’m proposing a bill to protect my right handed values by allowing me to post this on my shop window:

WE RESERVE THE RIGHT TO REFUSE SERVICE TO LEFT HANDED PEOPLE

I’m doing this because Left-handed people pose a substantial burden on my sincerely held religious belief. They challenge my faith every time they make a mess with dry erase markers, flip the contents of a clipboard, or change the screen orientation of a video game.

Does the bible not teach us that, “A wise man’s heart is at his right hand, But a fool’s heart is at his left.” Ecclesiastes 10:1-3

The good book is quite clear about the lord’s preference.

“And he shall set the sheep on his right hand and the goats on the left.” Matthew 25:33

There’s a reason the Angel Michael sat at God’s right and Lucifer sat at his left. There’s a reason left-handedness was considered sufficient evidence that someone was a witch. It was seen as a mark of the devil. There’s a reason Catholic schools used to whip pupils into right-handed values.

Here they want to spit in the face of our cultural heritage and our tradition. They want special treatment for their perverse preference. They want to change the way I run my staff promotions, seeing as how they’re decided with an arm wrestling contest.

There is no furtherance of a compelling government interest to impose left handedness on my business, to make fashion designers invert zippers, to make banks change the placement of pens around deposit slips, or to make tech companies shift the number pad to the other side of the keyboard.

Instead of laying on the right guilt, rallying against “right privilege,” lefties should work to improve the way they trim the hedge. There are options, they don’t always have to feel marginalized at the margins. Left hand conversion therapy is filled with positive success stories. All you have to do is let God convert you into the person you were meant to be. Rather than live a life of sin, have you tried being a righty?

Can opener

(Special thanks to http://lefthanded-problems.tumblr.com and the hashtag #LeftHandedProblems on Twitter for inspiring many of the references here)

If you haven’t been following the news out of Arizona (or Kansas) then all this might seem like it came out of left field (so to speak). I rarely take stands on polarizing issues, but I decided to write this to put one into perspective. If you support legislation that would deny rights to gay people, please reread this story, because it’s how you sound to me.

16 thoughts on “A Modest Proposed Bill”

  1. Oh, I think it was pretty clear from the disclaimer up front this wasn’t about left handed people Drew. But what a fantastically great way to make your point about the ridiculous proposals Arizona’s state legislators have made and the abuse such a law, if passed, would possibly create. Your example is fantastic and your style of writing utterly captivating. I could practically hear the sneer and sarcasm against the law as I read through.

    On a separate note: as my little one is left handed, you actually, inadvertently bought up a lot of issues for the future I need to be sensitive to which I’d never have thought of before – you know as a ‘normal’ right handed person! (Like when I get him to trim shrubs fro me once he’s old enough! Mwah haha!) So thanks for that too. I get practical advice, a brilliant metaphor and political commentary all in one post! 🙂

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  2. This is hilarious to me for two reasons. First, because of your fantastic wit. Second, because – surprise! – I’m a lefty. (literally speaking. I’m not homosexual). You wouldn’t have known that from our Twitter connection, but one of your very own tweeps is clearly a heathen! And as you can imagine, I’ve got many fun anecdotes about being a lefty, but rather than getting into all that, I’ll simply state that I’ve learned to adjust my way of life to the Righty World. I use my phone, scissors, and many other things with my right hand. What’s also funny is the fact that I was born ambidextrous, and while in daycare at a very young age, I was told by one of the instructors that I had to “pick a hand.” I’d typically start writing/drawing/coloring with my left hand and move on to my right hand when the left got tired, so I chose my left hand to use permanently, unaware that the world was predominantly righty. Now I am a bit of an outcast, but I manage.

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    1. My father’s a lefty too. He gave me several of the examples ideas I used here. I figured lefties might get a kick out of an extremist who was hyper-aware of their wicked ways. 😉

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      1. absolutely haha I was recently told at work that I’m a “rare breed.” But I also completely agree with your stance on rights & such. I feel like we’re back to arguing the point that “All men [and women] are created equal.” It’s a point that shouldn’t have to be brought up so frequently, as it is self-evident.

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