Comments: An awful lot of people do not have a dedicated pair of kitchen shears. They muddle through opening packages and snipping herbs with scissors, which get dirty and may rust if you run them through the dishwasher, or worse, with knives, which can be dangerous when used for the wrong tasks. A decently stocked kitchen has a pair of shears (argue if you must – we will not listen…).
A good, solid pair, like these from Pyrex, will open packages, produce evenly snipped herbs, and remove the backbone from a soon-to-be-spatchcocked chicken with equal ease. The notch at the base of the blade cuts thicker bones.
The blades are sharp, there is a silicone thumb insert for leverage, and they can be used by righties or lefties. They easily come apart for cleaning (open them 90 degrees and they almost jump apart). Their manufacturer wants you to clean them – as you would any decent blade – by hand in soapy water, to keep the cutting parts from banging into something else in the dishwasher and becoming dull.
Clearly, the less you use them, the sharper they'll stay, but the Pyrex folks says these should stay sharp for a good year, and, since the halves are so easily separated, they can be sharpened again and again. (You would not use a sharpening steel, would you? No, no! You use a slot in a sharpener dedicated to scissors' blades, but then that is true of all scissors and shears.)