Thursday, January 8, 2009

Updated! Get the Lead Out...or Else

Okay, so I am uber-guilty of blog truancy. Daily, I think of 100 things to blog about, but barely have the energy to make it though the day. Anyway...

I stumbled onto something this evening that envoked a reaction out of me that has never before reared its ugly head; tonight I emailed all three of my Senators and Congressman.

If you have missed the headline, next month on February 10th, a new law will go into effect that will mandate every children's item (clothing, toys, books, etc.) to be tested for lead and other toxins (@ approximately $50 per item) before being sold...or RESOLD. That's right. This law also pertains to resale stores, consignment shops, Goodwill's, charities, garage sales, Ebay, you name it. The man has decided that lead is bad (duh), but that we are passing to and fro the goods that THEY should have made darn sure weren't contaminated to begin with. Can you say, Free Trade Agreement? Hello? This is also devasting to the millions of homemade clothes and toy making small businesses that could never be able to carry the burden of this law.

If this is not stopped or amended, on February 10th, every single item at my local Once Upon A Child resale stores will be considered hazardous waste, and by law, should be disposed of accordingly. In our green, global warming society, and an official recession, we are going to send millions of dollars worth of viable children's items to the landfill. Why? The blame lies somewhere between greedy, souless China, and our trigger-happy-hurry-up-and-pass-a-law-to-shut-them-up Congress.

Can you tell I am irked?

Below I have quoted the email I sent to my "esteemed" representatives (you have to know how to kiss a few frogs, right Dad?), and I have provided a link that allows you to plug in your zip code and get ALL your reps. names, phone numbers, and emails. Feel free to copy and paste any portion of my letter that you wish to modify and use.

Power to the people.

UPDATE: Yesterday a clarification was released, that loosely removed resale and consignment stores from the spectrum of the law. I still think this will be detrimental to small businesses.

"Dear Senator _____ and Staff,

I want to implore to the esteemed Senator to stop--or fight to amend--the new lead law pertaining to children's clothing and toys, which is scheduled to go into effect February 10, 2009.

I am not the owner of a resale shop, but in order to clothe twin daughters, I buy almost everything second hand through resale stores and charity stores such as Goodwill. This law causes undue burden on the consumer, for items that should already be LEAD FREE when they were sold the first time.

I am also surprised that in this day and age of concern about going GREEN, and "reuse-recycle-renew", that our Congress would mandate that millions of dollars worth of children's apparel, toys, and books, shall be instantaneously deemed hazardous waste.

The implications of this law ripple far and wide, but will be most detrimental to lower income individuals who rarely buy "new". Just two weeks ago my children's Christmas presents consisted of 90% used toys, so I am not speaking from the perch of an ivory tower.

I support the quest for non-toxic products for our children, but at what cost to our individual liberties?

I am afraid that in a heat of the moment, a "we must act NOW" response has given us a law that is going to do more harm than help. In this faltering economy, you--as a Congress--have placed more hardships upon America's businesses and her citizens.

Again, I implore you to put this right, before it goes into effect next month.

Thank you for your time, and for your service to our country.


Michele Roach"

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"Guns don't kill people, the government does..." Dale Gribble, King of the Hill