But many, many lightsabers will fall through the cracks, from criminals stealing them to people hiding them to countries where the government sweeps just aren't that effective. For someone who genuinely wants one, a lightsaber will still be pretty easy to come by.
And in a world with readily-available lightsabers, how are horrific terrorist attacks not an everyday occurrence? Attacks would no longer have to be meticulously planned over months -- they could be spur-of-the-moment decisions, launched by lone wolf terrorists, and utterly impossible to defend against. Even people we wouldn't conventionally consider terrorists would be a threat. I have personally been pissed off at a Target enough to physically attack it, and I can't imagine the damage I'd have done if I'd been armed with anything more than my fists.
Kelly Martin via Wikimedia Commons
A lot more than $48,000 worth, that's for sure.
There'd just be nothing to stop this. The military, with their tanks and rifles and drones, could stay out of range of lightsaber-wielding villains. They could protect whatever they wanted, but they couldn't protect everything. And when any criminal or angry consumer can level a building or open a cash register with a flick of the wrist and little twirl, I don't see any way that the economy doesn't quickly break down. Eventually the store shelves will empty, and the petroleum will run out, and the soldiers will start slipping away in the night to be with their families. And after that? There's nothing but humming, crackling, lightsabering anarchy.
After a few decades of darkness (brightly-colored, well-lit darkness, I should point out), the human population will stabilize at a much lower level. Notably, the few who survive will all have one thing in common: They'll be pretty freaking handy with lightsabers. As society starts to reform in small clans and tribes, people will move around much more cautiously, because everyone will know that everyone else is armed with a god damned laser sword. Everyone will by necessity have the same heightened sense of posture and spatial awareness that fencers and duelists in the middle ages had.
"Is it not weird that although we are on a casual stroll, I'm armed in such a manner that I could murder you at any moment?"
"It is weird that you keep bringing it up."
But this will be more than just street smarts or experience; thanks to the pretty brutal process of unnatural selection which has just swept across the planet, there will be a genetic component to this as well. People with fast reflexes and an extraordinary sense for danger will simply be more likely to survive this saberpocalypse. Their children and their children's children will have the same advantage, and over the next several generations of societal rebuilding, brutal population winnowing, and slapstick rave accidents, a few humans will evolve enough to develop what is essentially Force sensitivity.
So there you go. No downsides. Bring on the lightsabers.
Chris Bucholz is a Cracked columnist and would be one of the first to perish. His first novel, Severance, is incredible and available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Apex Books. Join him on Facebook or Twitter.
For more from Chris, check out 5 Pros And Cons Of Leaving Your Child In The Wilderness and So The Walls Of Your House Are Bleeding.
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