Dear Blog Readers,
We have become the kind of blogger we never wanted to be — the kind who has a "read our blog" button on our website but the newest post is months old. We blame Facebook for this — it's so much easier to write something there and we seem to have more followers there than we did here on the blog. Still, we can't quite bring ourselves to give it up altogether yet — so instead, we're posting this little note to explain our lack of current entries. Please do check out our facebook page, we think it's fun, if not quite as long form.
sincerely, the Joie de Blogger.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Those Dangerous Bucky Balls, Revisited

A friend sent me a link to a New York Times article about Bucky Balls this morning.  Readers of this blog and Joie customers will remember those from several years ago - sets of small, very powerful magnets that were wonderful to play with - but eventually deemed too dangerous by federal regulators for children under 14 (! dangerous if child - say 12, doesn't understand that one should not eat magnets) - and then, deemed too dangerous to exist at all. And to be fair, banning their sale was not totally without cause - there had been several deaths associated with very young children (2 -3 year olds) who had swallowed them.) But now - evidently they are going after the owner of the company that made them personally, even though the product was completely legal when he brought it to market and he complied with all labeling requirements.  (I remember being asked to personally sign a pledge that we would not sell them as a gift for a child.) And, he removed them from the market when forced to. So, that aspect of it is the focus of the article.  However, another thing that really struck me was what the legislation says about our strange and outright schizophrenic definition of children - Congress passes a law changing the definition of a child to anyone under 14 - but allows us to try 12 and 13 year olds as adults on murder charges.  You can't sell them magnetic toys but you can put them away for life.  Sounds like the twilight zone to me .. .. ..

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