Evan Dorkin rounds up the potential dangers of too-literal readings of recent laws aimed at testing lead levels in children’s toys:
Anyway — said impact will be nothing short of devastating for many small businesses, home-crafters, DIY-ers, toy manufacturers, clothing manufacturers, re-sellers, used clothing shops, thrift shops, and so on and so forth. And also, libraries, book stores and yeah, comic shops. Because a ton of stuff is being lumped together under this act, which will require expensive product testing for anything deemed “for children”. Children’s clothes, books, comics, school supplies, toys, costumes, need I go on? And second-hand items, clothes, toys, books, back issues, etc. It doesn’t end once you start thinking about it. And, in fact, it gets worse, because it affects inventory. So, dump your inventory, Target, Toys R Us, etc, and smaller businesses, you lose those toys and shirts that will possibly bankrupt you. No more crafting on Etsy, et al. You can’t even, under this law, knit blankets for Project Linus , which provides blankets for children in need. So why the F didn’t the people who slapped this together think about it?
A follow-up post takes on debunkers of the alarm bells:
As Sarah says — unfortunately, people are going to believe whom they want to believe, but I actually read through the relevant sections myself and Snopes is wrong. It’s not murky. Enforcement will probably be murky, but the law is not. I think they’re wrong, too. We’ve seen a lot of people slamming the Snopes article, but apparently the people at the site have made up their minds and are sticking to their guns. So, who debunks the debunkers? I dunno. Life is sticky.