Complying with an agreement reached earlier in the month, China promised to immediately stop painting toys with lead paint, which comes 35 years after the US Consumer Product Safety Commission began to regulate substance domestically.
Lead poisoning is dangerous, particularly harmful to children, causing learning disabilities, brain damage, and major organ failure.
I’m no rocket scientist; I’m hardly a guest columnist, but it seems ridiculous that this would even need to be in a forum of discussion or debate. Some people may blame China for poor production requirements, but the United State allowed these toys to be imported.
But this isn’t about toys, or lead paint. It’s about compromising safety for cheaper costs. Either we didn’t mind handing lead-coated toys to our children, or we didn’t care enough to check. Both ways, it’s rather disturbing.
I don’t like kids as much as the next 21-year-old guy. They are smelly, practically parasitic in their dependency and occasionally they vomit on you. And they’re sober, so they don’t even have an excuse.
But even I would know better than to give a kid a toy with a layer of poison on it.
In the history of the United States, we’ve always been looking for a way to be cost effective, regardless of the human rights violations. First, we exploited the generosity of the Native Americans and just claimed the land they didn’t own, which was everything because they couldn’t understand or believe in the concept of possessing earth. Land snatching is mighty cost effective.
Secondly, we crammed people on ships and transported cheap labor to the U.S. We had a work force that we didn’t have to pay, other than the initial price tag. Having employees that you don’t require payment is extremely cost effective.
Nowadays, we couldn’t get away with exploiting people, could we? I guess that depends on what you define as exploitation.
If your definition includes avoiding US labor laws by going overseas, and sacrificing safe working conditions for cheaper wages, then it’s possible that the same type of things are going on today.
In the 2003 Canadian documentary, The Corporation, the film psychoanalyzes the corporate mentality. The movie dissects and diagnosis the behaviors of corporations the same way a therapist would do with a patient, ultimately coming to the conclusion that behavior patterns of corporations are similar to that of a psychopath.
If you’ve never been diagnosed, or you’re not a psych major, psychopaths have a disregard for the feelings of others, are incapable of experiencing guilt, are unable to maintain lasting relationships, and are deceptive for monetary gain. Also, they have a hard time complying with laws, and routinely ignore the safety of others.
Bottom line, there doesn’t need to be such a lofty bottom-line. Call me a communist, but people don’t need to be so rich. According to a Public Affairs Report conducted by the University of California – Berkeley, the difference between the fifth of the world’s richest and the fifth of the world’s poorest has increased dramatically. In 1820, it was 3 to 1 and increased to 11 to 1 at the turn of the 20th century. Now, it is well over 74 to 1.
CEOs don’t need to make hundreds of millions of dollars, especially since the foundation of their success is a working class that isn’t paid anywhere near that amount. It’s sinful when some people don’t have enough to feed themselves, while others have excessive luxuries.
It doesn’t seem that we’ve ever been “One nation, under God” unless your idol of worship is money.