Thursday, August 6, 2009

Book Burning

Remember those old Mickey Mouse cartoons that are so strange to us now, relics of an earlier age and a different mindset? You won't find many books from that era:
under a law Congress passed last year aimed at regulating hazards in children’s products, the federal government has now advised that children’s books published before 1985 should not be considered safe and may in many cases be unlawful to sell or distribute. Merchants, thrift stores, and booksellers may be at risk if they sell older volumes, or even give them away, without first subjecting them to testing—at prohibitive expense. Many used-book sellers, consignment stores, Goodwill outlets, and the like have accordingly begun to refuse new donations of pre-1985 volumes, yank existing ones off their shelves, and in some cases discard them en masse
Is the objective really to protect people? Is there that much paint, or that many cases of sickness caused by the few artifacts of our past that we have left?