Imagine you make a product for sale to adults. You clearly label on the product that it is not intended for use with kids. You even label it's a danger to children. But the label doesn't matter, and some children get injured. The Consumer Product Safety Commission hears about this, and recommends all stores pull your product. Then the government sues you, and ultimately your company's product, and similar products, are banned for sale in the USA. Your $50-million company shuts down, and people lose their jobs.
That just happened two weeks ago to Maxfield & Oberton, maker of Buckyballs. They stopped sales 12/21/12 and have now gone out of business and are being liquidated.
So if this can happen to an adult desk toy for injuring 20 children, why not for guns that kill over 30,000 US citizens each year?
The answer and what to do after the jump.
The reason guns cannot currently be regulated in the same way is thanks to Congress. The Consumer Product Safety Act of 1972 was amended in 1976 to eliminate firearms and ammunition from the Consumer Product Safety Commission's purview. While the ATF now regulates all things related to guns, there are not a lot of safety mechanisms in place. No way to recall (or even track!) any safety issues. No way to evaluate if a firearm or ammunition is safe to the public.
Not to belittle or defend the injuries children have accidentally suffered from Buckyballs, but it seems crazy to me we live in a country where our government feels motivated to shut down a $50-million company over the span of a few months in response to that, but we have tens of thousands of deaths each year due to guns and these aren't even really looked at.
In fact, based on data it's estimated that more people will die from guns than cars in 2 years. And on top of that, our government has been cutting public funding for years to anyone who dares to look into firearm safety. How can we ban office toys for accidentally injuring kids, but then not dare to even look at gun safety? Especially after the tragedy upon tragedy this year?
So I've made a petition to the White House to allow guns to fall under the purview of the CPSC. I hope DailyKos can help me get to 25,000 signatures.