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Ok, first I find this article about New Jersey’s efforts to ban quick release axles on children’s bikes. That leads me to this site, which is pretty much dedicated to fighting Wal-Mart over the sale of crappy toys that hurt kids.
Wal-Mart is not going to stop selling low quality, inexpensive products until America stops buying it. While my heart goes out to all the injured children, I have to wonder why people don’t go to a bike shop for bicycles. Wal-Mart buys cheap and sells cheap. Surely people can recognize that bicycles sold there are inferior to a bike shop’s selection. And that there is no mechanic there to check over a bike before it leaves the store. Yeah, some kid might assemble it and give it a once-over, but you’ve got to wonder about their assembly standards.
So while I do believe in a certain amount of personal responsibility, and that you get what you pay for, I hope that someday people will realize that when it comes to your child’s safety, you can’t look to save a few bucks by buying a dangerous bike. And maybe the powers that be will stop putting profits before safety as well.
Props to Michael’s Bicycles, in Newbury Park, California for supplying my son with his first bicycle – a Gary Fisher mountain bike.