What about knives is susceptible to the cancel culture?
By Steve Shackleford
The so-called cancel culture that’s plagued our nation for some time now has somehow managed to overlook our beloved knife community—at least so far. Of course, this is not to say that the “woke mob” hasn’t attacked a number of personages revered not only worldwide but in the knife community as well, such as presidents George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, both of whom carried knives of various types, including some really cool pocketknives that have been featured in BLADE®.
In fact, some knifemakers, including Ernest Emerson through his Emerson Knives, Inc., and ABS master smith Jerry Fisk, have built and sold knives with handles made of wood taken from the trees on Washington’s Mount Vernon estate. Many other presidents have connections to knives as well, but, for now, their statues or monuments haven’t been toppled, spray-painted with graffiti, or otherwise vandalized by the wokesters—or at least not like Washington’s and Lincoln’s have.
All of which got me to thinking: If the woke mobsters were to come after the knife community, what might they single out? There are some words knife enthusiasts use that could be targeted. Stockman, for instance, would no doubt enrage those who might demand it be called stockperson instead. However, if you ask for a stockperson at a knife store, instead of a knife the attendant might bring out Hank, the 38-year-old shelf stocker from the storeroom.
Another pocketknife pattern name that might ruffle wokester tail feathers is boy’s knife. Somehow I don’t think changing the name to girl’s knife would placate the mob, either. The next-door neighbor, Mr. Wingtip, referred to me as a juvenile delinquent when I was a kid, but juvenile delinquent’s knife probably would send the culture cancelers into conniption-fit overdrive. I’ll just leave the “solution” to that one to woke R&D. As for Boy Scout and/or Girl Scout knives, I’m not even going there!
That brings us to the venerable gent’s knife, but BLADE has chronicled a trend that has been ongoing for quite a while now—women embracing gent’s knives for their own use. As a result, whenever we do stories on gent’s knives, we include them under a gent’s/lady’s knives umbrella. On the other hand, who am I kidding? I would likely get “bricked” by the woke mob for that one, too.
One knife term that might fire up the wokey-dokers is butt—as in butt of the handle, aka the end of the handle. My wife Susan is always saying “pardon my appendage” when she bumps into me, so maybe we could change butt to appendage. On the other hand, we could just tell the cancelers to butt out, eh?
Slip joint is another knife term that might raise some woke-brows. Joint is also another name for prison—think “the joint”—and with so many wokester calls to abolish prisons, slip joint might have to be replaced with slip halfway house or some such. Speaking of which, the defund the police movement means all knives designed for law enforcement would probably come under attack from the mob and would require replacement with some other knife name—social worker knives, anyone?
On the other hand, I can think of at least one knife term that the woke troopers would probably embrace wholeheartedly—pig sticker.
With that, consider this installment of “Unsheathed” canceled!
1973 BLADE magazine issues in digital PDF! Delivered straight to your e-mail inbox for instant download. It’s 1973, and the future of the modern knife industry was being forged by a pioneering group of knifemakers with a magazine and a mission. Get these collectible first issues of the World's #1 Knife Publication! Click Here to Download the Pack