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Bianchini: Watch group grinches

BY FRANCESCA BIANCHINI | NOVEMBER 29, 2012 6:30 AM

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Besides the blistering cold and runny noses, the holiday season is always accompanied by those classic holiday movies. How the Grinch Stole Christmas, It’s a Wonderful Life, and my personal favorite, A Christmas Story.

You just can’t help but be entertained by the leg lamp, Flick getting his tongue frozen to the pole, or Ralphie’s incessant plea for the Red Ryder BB gun. 

And the look of shock on Ralphie’s face after constantly getting rejected by adults for the gift being too dangerous is just the cherry on top.

But what exactly marks a toy as safe or dangerous?

In 2010, there were at least 17 toy-related deaths to children under 15 and around 251,700 toy-related injuries that were treated in U.S. emergency rooms, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

However, consumers should determine whether a toy is too dangerous for their kids — not corporations.

Recently, the nonprofit corporation World Against Toys Causing Harm Inc. released a review of the most dangerous toys of 2012.

This organization takes overprotectiveness to a whole new level.

Among these toys are such classics as a Dart Zone dart gun or the Avengers Gamma green smash fists. The group contends that these toys have “potential for eye injuries” or that children may be injured by “blunt impact.”

Yet, the same could be said for every other toy in existence. In fact, a child could pick up a stick and cause the exact same injuries plus more.

Many toys have a warning and a recommended age printed on the packaging. If there really is a potential for danger, people should be informed. But most of the time, they’re simple warnings that even my dog would find obvious.

Watch groups such as World Against Toys should spend less time trying to ban toys that are “dangerous” and more time on toys that are creepy. Because, let me tell you, there’s got to be a higher chance of a Furby mentally wounding a child than a dart gun physically hurting one.

So skip the Tinker Toys, and buy the dart gun. Just be careful, though. You might shoot your eye out.


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