I thought I had witnessed the zenith of human courage when Billy Joel recently announced in an interview that “Nazis aren’t good people.” Joel is risking his career, perhaps even his life, to dispel the popular notion that Nazis are decent chaps. But his heroism is mere pond scum in comparison to the warriors who have taken up the fight against plastic straws.
The Board of Supervisors in San Francisco passed an ordinance yesterday banning straws from restaurants and bars in the city. San Francisco, like Seattle, will now be a straw-free safe haven. The refugee fleeing straw persecution can come to the city and live in paradise and contract hepatitis when he steps on a used heroin needle. But even then he will rejoice, for he is liberated from straws.
Many cities and corporations are following suit. Another city in California will now hand out possible jail sentences to straw dealers. 15 seconds ago nobody worried about straws. Now there is a straw crisis and an anti-straw movement to answer it. Ordinances are being passed. Laws are being written. Hashtags are being hashtagged. Celebrities are recording PSAs. Straws are a scourge on the Earth, it has been decided randomly. And who could dispute this assessment? After all, Americans use 500 MILLION STRAWS A DAY.
That, anyway, is the stat the media and the heroes of the anti-straw movement have been citing as verified fact. And it is indeed verified. It is verified because I typed it in bold letters just now. It is also verified because the 9-year-old child who came up with the figure conducted an informal phone survey with a few straw manufacturers six years ago. What more do you need? Actual research and evidence? Only straw-using Nazis would make such a request. Haven’t you seen that video of a sea turtle with a straw up its nose? Are you in favor of jamming straws up sea turtles’ noses? If not, shut up and go along with the data that a fourth-grader guesstimated, you turtle-killing Hitler groupie.
You must understand something. It is not enough anymore to focus thoughtfully and deliberately on a worthy goal, such as reducing the amount of plastic we use. We cannot simply say, “Hey, let’s consider ways to moderate our straw consumption.” No, there must be campaigns and slogans and laws. Cities caked in human fecal matter and discarded drug paraphernalia must put those matters on hold to fight this thing that we have suddenly turned into a crisis. Figures and statistics must be shouted, no matter their inaccuracy, and any attempt to correct them must be met with opposition. There cannot be any argument or debate whatsoever. There must be mindless hysteria, don’t you see? It is the only way to get things done. Or at least it is the most exciting way.
In that spirit, I close with this statistic: the human race will be extinct by the year 2070 if we do not abolish plastic straws. According to research I just conducted between writing the previous sentence and this one, the ocean will eventually consist of nothing but straws if we continue on our current course. The more intelligent marine life, such as whales and dolphins, will survive by building huts out of the straws. Scientists believe they may even figure out how to construct vast straw networks which they will use for communication. But the less intelligent aquatic creatures — particularly octopi, who are frankly morons, and various types of fish — will not be able to adapt. They will die first. And then we will be next. Only the marine mammals in their straw kingdoms will remain. Humanity’s few survivors will be captured, enslaved, and forced to work in the straw mines where they will dig for coffee stirrers, which will be used as currency in straw land. Is this the future you want for your children? Or do you deny these scientific facts altogether?
There is no more time to waste. Strawmaggedon is on the horizon. This is our final chance. The last straw. Let us act now before it is too late.