I am furious.

I won’t mention the oil spill, other than to say that it is obviously devastating to our world, one we had all hoped our children would inherit in better shape than it is currently.

I won’t discuss global climate change, although I could completely crush this box of soap here in doing so.

And I will only briefly rant about the “play sand” marketed by Quickrete for SPECIFIC use in CHILDREN’S sandboxes. Here is a short excerpt from the 9 PAGE document I found online published BY Quickrete:

This material is considered hazardous under the OSHA Hazard Communications Standard
(29 CFR 1910.1200).

a. Silicosis Respirable crystalline silica (quartz) can cause silicosis, a fibrosis (scarring) of the lungs. Silicosis may be progressive; it may lead to disability and death.
b. Lung Cancer Crystalline silica (quartz) inhaled from occupational sources is classified as carcinogenic to humans.
c. Tuberculosis Silicosis increases the risk of tuberculosis.
d. Autoimmune and Chronic Kidney Diseases Some studies show excess numbers of cases of scleroderma, connective tissue disorders, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic kidney diseases
and end-stage kidney disease in workers exposed to respirable crystalline silica.
e. Non-Malignant Respiratory Diseases (other than silicosis) Some studies show an increased incidence in chronic bronchitis and emphysema in workers exposed to respirable crystalline silica.

Excuse me, but is this for real??? What kind of INSANE reality am I living in that permits a hazardous material to be marketed for use in a child’s sandbox?? WTF? Quickrete then has the gall to suggest dampening the product to diminish the “hazards of its dust.” Okay, I’m really almost done here, but this was the kicker: “A single exposure will not result in serious adverse health effects.” Well, I don’t know about your two year-old, but mine is certainly not going to play in his sandbox ONE TIME!!!

So clearly I have fallen into a bizarro, alternate universe where people value money over human life (oh, wait, that’s always been the case) and poison is distributed to our young and vulnerable. Apparently, you can get non-silica sand online at http://www.safesand.com/, but, big surprise, it’s incredibly expensive.

But this horror show pales in comparison to the awfulness of our food supply. Yes, it’s true, a little silica dust is no big deal in context with the crap our children put into their mouths. GMO’s aside, (as they are a whole ‘nother topic) it is a complete nightmare.

I was admittedly a complete freak about everything that Joshua consumed in the first six to twelve months of his life. I worked and made him organic baby food. But, given that I can only be an overachiever most of the time, once he got a little older, sometimes I cheated: a frozen organic pea here, a canned organic green bean there. It is really hard to find fresh organic veggies during a Maine winter. The reality was that he ate quite a lot of these veggie time savers. Then I found out that all canned green beans (even the organic ones) are grossly contaminated with BPA, the very thing I had bought special baby bottles to avoid. I was beside myself. Literally. I have not bought them since. And it was recently called to my attention that canned tomatoes are not fit for purchase either. Yes, even the organic ones (except for Eden Foods brand, which I have yet to find on my supermarket shelves).

And the latest pathetic installment in the devastating saga of the foods we feed to our children on a daily basis: dangerous levels of lead in kids’ juice boxes. The best part is that they don’t even know how it got there! So how will they fix this problem? In case you forgot, lead causes developmental delays and according to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, lead exposure in small amounts can make children “appear inattentive, hyperactive, and irritable.” Hmmm, maybe we should reassess some of those kids who were recently prescribed Ritalin for ADHD? Perhaps they merely HAVE LEAD POISONING!

I’ll end with my favorite Cree Indian Prophesy: “Only after the last tree has been cut down, Only after the last river has been poisoned, Only after the last fish has been caught, Only then will you find that money cannot be eaten.”

Well aren’t we just a bunch of idiots?