The People Who Train Babies To Use Machetes


Of all the things you shouldn’t hand to a baby, a machete is probably right at the top of the list below fire and a hand grenade. It’s a concept so cartoonishly stupid it couldn’t possibly be something that people actually do, but amazingly, it totally is.

The Fore people of New Guinea are known to be able to safely handle knives, fire and we presume the responsibility of filing their taxes in a timely manner by the time they’re able to walk. That’s not hyperbole or a story based on a single example of someone propping their newborn up with sticks and glueing knives to their hands in an attempt to re-shoot Terminator 2 with babies. It’s just how the Fore people chose to approach child rearing.

If babies that can handly a knife better than you can handle your own dick isn’t amazing enough, in the book The Cultural Nature of Human Development, the writer discusses that in central Africa some babies are taught to use adorably tiny but nonetheless lethal miniaturized spears and digging tools between the ages of 8-10 months. We don’t think we could even understand the concept of what a Gameboy did at that age and there are people out there teaching their babies rudimentary stabbing skills and how to properly dispose of a body.

Then you have the Efe people of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where one of the first thing a child learns to do is how to properly wield a machete. We don’t have any images or links of how exactly this training plays out but we hope it involves strapping jelly-beans to the handles of knives and an anthropomorphic cartoon machete that teaches children to kill in a language composed of the dying screams of its victims.