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Lead In Our Libraries, Etc.

March 20th, 2009

Google today celebrates Eric Carle’s “Very Hungry Caterpillar,” a popular children’s book. Seeing the logo on the company’s homepage reminded me of a post that I’ve meant to get up here.

Tained toys from China recently brought about a new law that has libraries now searching for books that may contain traces of lead paint. Librarians were upset by the new law, and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has had no choice but to issue a one-year reprieve for testing on library books.

Here’s one article from the Star Tribune in Minneapolis-St.Paul: “Whoa! Lock up those kids’ books chock full o’ lead,” and an excerpt:

Some thrift stores around the country are tossing out bushels of old children’s books, just to be safe. No one wants a ruinous fine because they sold a copy of “Fido Visits the Gas Refinery” printed in 1952.

Criticism of the new law suggests that the federal government has gone too far in this case, and I’m inclined to agree.

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