Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Don't Read That Book! It Contains Lead!

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, animals both domesticated and wild, shoot for the stars but watch out for the sun.

So I was reading the AP's article about children's books containing lead.  The article states that the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), who are obviously now at the top of their game after the whole China-trying-to-poison-our-children-through-toys episode, is insisting that we urge the nation's schools and libraries to test each and every children's book, at a mere cost of $300 per book. 

Scott Wolfson, a spokesperson for the CPSC, recommended that the the 116,000 public schools and libraries, "take steps to ensure that the children aren't accessing those books."

I checked the CPSC website and there was no mention of a recall, so I would imagine Wolfson was speaking on behalf of himself and not the CPSC, and no demand will be made to pull any books off the shelf.  But somehow I still get that creepy Hitler book burning or Orwellian thought-controlling feel, however much disguised in righteousness.  We just don't need another reason for kids not to read.  There are plenty already.

... And thank God I was one of the lucky ones who survived reading in the '80s.  Another near fatal accident I now know I avoided.


Given literacy rates and comprehension of the written word in North America, we would be lucky if our kids picked up anything from what they read -- lead included.

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