Lenore "Free Range Kids" Skenazy's editorial in Forbes aims at the excessive regulatory zeal in kids' product safety — where even the faintest whiff of danger is grounds for a recall:
Michael Warring, president of American Educational Products in Fort Collins, Colo., had his shipment all ready: A school's worth of small bags, each one filled with an igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rock. Then the school canceled its order. Says Warring, "They apparently decided rocks could be harmful to children."… The children will study a poster of rocks instead…
Well, there's the Graco Harmony High Chair. The commission warns parents to "stop using product immediately." Yikes! Scary! Is it ejecting kids? Spontaneously combusting? Not quite. Of the 1,200,000 units sold, the CPSC received "24 reports of injuries, including bumps and bruises to the head, a hairline fracture to the arm, and cuts, bumps, bruises and scratches to the body." In other words: For every 50,000 chairs sold, a single child has suffered a bruise, bump or–once–a hairline fracture. Now look: Nobody likes to see a sweetheart suffer. But the Harmony high chair does not exactly sound like baby's first Pinto.