A quick and dirty post since I'm frantically packing for our trip down to Capital City (and a weekend of house-hunting in Springfield). But there's something I wanted to bring to your attention.
BlogHers Act Canada has chosen its issue: ELIMINATE/REDUCE HARMFUL CHEMICALS IN FOOD/RETAIL PRODUCTS.
Go on over and have a look. Don't forget the comments too since people have been adding interesting links. There's also a schedule for the personal action items that will be encouraged throughout the year.
You can bet I'll be participating in both, even after I've headed back to the States. I've mentioned my love for the little actions before, so that part shouldn't come as any surprise, but I am equally motivated by the big topic that's been chosen. It's the one I voted for, even though I had suggested something else on the list.
The issue of harmful chemicals in our food and other products is a big concern for me for many reasons. Trillian and I go out of our way to buy organic when we can. There are some products, particularly some fruits and vegetables, that we will not buy conventional. There are others that we compromise on, oranges and other things with rinds that are supposed to be safer, but that still leaves me a little on edge. And I worry about chemicals that are considered 'food-grade,' even without any or dubious scientific support for their safety. I won't even get started on additives in plastic containers.
I also won't say much about the problem of unsafe toys, the fact that new recalls--usually for lead-based paint--seem to pop up all the time. I am not sure what to make of the fact that there is usually some statement about "unacceptable levels of lead." Unacceptable levels? How much is acceptable? How much would they normally allow on the toys that I give to my son?
It's that last thought that makes this issue even more personal. Our multiple Thomas trains have been sent back to the company and we're awaiting the return of "safe" ones--and some bonus, we're promised. But that doesn't keep my son from noticing that he's missing trains.
Now Scooter has a ridiculous number of trains (blame indulgent parents and the fact that every relative gets them for him). The three engines (and multiple freight cars, though those don't count as much) are nothing in the grand scheme of his railroad. But he has an incredibly sharp memory and is also a kid with a need for sameness. Last week we were talking about trains and numbers and colors, and when I mistakenly brought up #5--really, I know that Henry is #3, what was I thinking?--he immediately said, "James is lost." Today, as we drove to OT, he brought up Skarloey and Salty and said both were missing. Salty is not part of the recall, so I told him we'd look for him when we got home. For Skarloey, I decided to take a page from Bub and Pie and told him that Skarloey had to go away for a little bit but would come back later. His response: "And maybe James will come home soon too."
Edited to add: Trillian just reminded me that Salty got lost at Grandma and Grandpa's on the last visit and has not been found. So there's one we'll be repurchasing.
I want harmful chemicals out of our food and toys because these are things that shouldn't hurt us. To me that is a simple and logical desire. But I also want to get rid of harmful chemicals so that I don't have to sneak through my son's room and steal away his toys or worry anytime he gets a new gift that there is some unseen danger lurking in the paint.