Thursday, August 2, 2007

Killer Elmos, Doras and Thomases

"Don't touch Elmo, honey, it might lead to retardation."

I've been involved in the last three major toy and food recalls involving goods from China. I'm getting tired of trips to the post office, throwing out possibly tainted food, scanning the toy box and (oh yeah) worrying that my house may be filled with lead saturated toys or salmonella in our food! I'm willing to pay more for toys and food if I know where it's made, who made it and if they were paid a fair wage. You'd think at 20 bucks a pop a Thomas engine would be handcrafted by a well paid artist or at least not children in a closed window factory in Hong Kong licking their lead paint paintbrushes adding smiles to cheeky engine faces!

Why can't our government demand that imports from abroad meet the same requirements that toys made in the states must meet? How can Toys R Us and Target and WALMART sell this crap and not have outraged families? Why do toy manufacturers/retailers have to make so much money, when they pass the cost on to us in the form of corporate tax breaks and health care costs?

Well, here's what the little hell raiser in me is thinking. This lasted recall from Fisher Price has an online form and they will send me back a postage paid label for my tainted items. How nice. I won't have to front the postage costs like I did to send in James. BUT, do you know how the pre-paid label works? The company has an account number, the post office weighs the item and deducts the amount of postage needed to mail the item and the company gets a bill that they have to pay. Now, I'm not telling you what to do, I'm just telling you what my cousin's friend's sister's boyfriend heard someone do....and I'm hoping the mail carriers will forgive me! I think I'll send back my Elmo sprinkler with a few rocks, bricks and possibly a dirty diaper. Just an idea, you didn't hear it from me!
Added later:
Here's a better idea, MomsRising has a petition to let Congress and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) know that, "Testing children's products for toxic chemicals must be a priority. No more toxic toys and children's products!" Sign it here!

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