Aqua Dot toys have been pulled off retailers’ shelves nationwide, after news reports claimed that the toys contained gamma hydroxy butyrate – also known as GHB or the “date rape drug.” (Actually, the toys contained a different chemical that, when eaten and metabolized, converts into GHB.) These reports put regulators and parents in a tizzy.
I’ve always been suspicious of the media label “Date Rape Drug.” It’s like calling duct tape “Abduction Wrap.”
Also, I don’t want to dismiss the scare felt by the parents of the two children who were hospitalized after eating Aqua Dots – but, when I grew up, you were taught not to eat your toys.
There has to be some recognition that it’s dangerous for children to put non-food items in their mouths and start chewing.
Perhaps we need more data. We can outsource the research – set up a laboratory in a developing country where we feed kids toys to make certain they’re edible. “Poor Wang Phat. Last week, he was testing army men. Not so bad eating them – but the next day, ouch! Especially the guy lying down with the bayonet.”