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Archive for Thursday, January 28, 2010

Novelty cigarette lighters targeted by bill

January 28, 2010, 11:19 a.m. Updated January 28, 2010, 11:21 p.m.

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Here are some examples of novelty cigarette lighters that would be banned under Senate Bill 342, which was considered Thursday before a Senate committee. Nancy Niles Lusk of Overland Park purchased these lighters in filling stations and convenience stores in Kansas. Supporters of the bill say the lighters should not be for sale because they are attractive to young children who could misuse them.

Here are some examples of novelty cigarette lighters that would be banned under Senate Bill 342, which was considered Thursday before a Senate committee. Nancy Niles Lusk of Overland Park purchased these lighters in filling stations and convenience stores in Kansas. Supporters of the bill say the lighters should not be for sale because they are attractive to young children who could misuse them.

— When Nancy Niles Lusk of Overland Park showed her teenage sons a “handgun” lighter, they said, “wickedly awesome.”

That’s the problem, according to Lusk, fire officials, child advocates and health groups.

The novelty cigarette lighters that look like toys, household items, cartoon characters, guns, food, musical instruments, dragons and other objects are too attractive to children.

Sen. Oletha Faust-Goudeau, D-Wichita, has authored Kansas Senate Bill 342, which would ban the sale or distribution of so-called novelty lighters.

“The size of the lighters is perfect for a child’s smaller hand, and it doesn’t take much strength to operate them,” she said. “Unfortunately, when the fire comes out, children do not know how to be careful that the fire does not spread to their surroundings.”

State Health Officer Jason Eberhart-Phillips submitted testimony in support of the bill, saying the lighters can be dangerous.

“They’re cute, they’re little, but they are not toys and the consequences of playing with them could be deadly,” he said.

Fire officials said that 14,500 structure fires were reported nationwide in 2006 that had been started by children playing with fire. Those fires resulted in 130 deaths.

The lighters are commonly sold in convenience stores and gasoline stations, officials said. All are manufactured in China, according to testimony to the Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee.

The committee took no action on the bill but is expected to work on the measure later this session.

Comments

pissedinlawrence 4 years, 2 months ago

So much for my Novelty cigarette lighter company.

What a f-ing waste of my tax dollars. I collect these lighters and I don't even smoke... and btw don't you have to be 18 to freaking buy lighters.

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chasmo 4 years, 2 months ago

No ones life property or liberty is safe when the legislator is in session.

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kansasmutt 4 years, 2 months ago

This is our tax money at work. We should all be soooo very happy. With 15% of our people in Kansas out of work, our businesses closing doors at a rate of 5 per day , and our old folks facing Medicare cuts, and they are worried about a lighter ? I have to ask this, Are our leaders part of the pre late 1970s education cut or did they graduate later than 1980 ? I think time being used to figure out how to run our state on a real budget might be better usage of time and money. Our state is looking like a bunch of goofs to all our surrounding states. Even the Missouri governor spoke of the tax hike we want and what a boom it would be for Missouri business along state lines. Missouri also knows how detrimental a smoking ban is to business, its not anything they are looking at doing. That is up to each business owner to make that choice.

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Iknownothing 4 years, 2 months ago

They should make a law that you have to be 65 to buy novelty lighter and 95 to buy cigarette then when u reach 95 ( if you do ) your lighter won't work or your dead and don't care who has your novelty lighter or where you are smoking or what your smoking

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Benjamin Roberts 4 years, 2 months ago

"I looked this stuff up on the internet because I had a novelty cigarette lighter that the flame would not shut off, even when the switch was turned off. I finally had to take it apart with a screwdriver to get it to turn off."

Seems like it would have been easier to blow the flame out or pour water on it. Then, set it outside in a clear area to dissipate the remaining butane before disposing of the lighter.

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nativeofkansas 4 years, 2 months ago

Making novelty cigarette lighters that look like toys is an obviously dumb idea. But they are also unsafe for another reason.

They are imported from China. Just look at the labels--they all have a "Made in China" label. These lighters have a history of rulings against them for failing to meet safety standards in Europe and the U.S. Meanwhile the BIC Corporation in Milford, Connecticut is the only remaining manufacturer of disposable lighters in the U.S. and their lighters have to undergo more that 50 separate quality checks. BIC doesn't make novelty lighters

China has dumped a lot of lighters in the U.S. because the European Union said enough of these crappy lighters and they banned them in March of 2008.

I looked this stuff up on the internet because I had a novelty cigarette lighter that the flame would not shut off, even when the switch was turned off. I finally had to take it apart with a screwdriver to get it to turn off. If we ban novelty lighters, we will not be banning any American made lighters. A ban against novelty lighters would be banning unsafe imported cigarette lighters, most likely made in China. They probably have lead paint, too.

Most of them are really cool and fun, much more attractive to play with than matches, because they have features including visual effects, flashing lights, musical sounds and toy-like designs which are attractive to children. Does a smoker really need all that to light a cigarette? No.

In addition to being a hazard to small children, they encourage teenage smoking because the not-too-bright teenagers who smoke think they are cool. The National Fire Protection Agency, National Volunteer Fire Council, and the National Association of State Fire Marshalls are against the sale of these lighters. If we ban novelty lighters, we will not be banning any American made lighters. A ban against novelty lighters would be banning unsafe imported cigarette lighters, most likely made in China. They probably have lead paint, too.

Looks like the Kansas Legislature is way ahead of the average person responding to this article. Hmmm . . . perhaps most are smokers. Too bad their mothers didn't watch over them better and not let them start smoking in the first place

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oneeye_wilbur 4 years, 2 months ago

What else would the J/W write about, K2 and cigarette lighters all go together in this pot smoking town.

Too bad the Journal World doesnt go interview some of the potential employers that were coming here and find out the real reason they chose not too. Interview the Delaware tribe and see if they would come back to North Lawrence and build the sewer lines(like they would have for a casino) maybe interview someone from our sister cities and find out if they have a business they could expand into the United States, specifically Lawrence.

I can't believe that Eutin cannot bring us a nice German restaurant. Does Kansas have a sister state? Maybe the State of Despair, would do for Kansas.

How much would it cost to keep all of the legislators home for one year and have them do nothing in Topeka, because that is the end result anyway of their being there.

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Satirical 4 years, 2 months ago

kneejerkreaction... "But regulating novelty lighters is just….plain….stupid."

I guess we will just have to agree to disagree. I wouldn't want companies making dolls with hidden knives, and I can understand why the legislature is considering a ban on lighters which look like toys. It is an attractive danger of which children would be unaware. Although, as I stated before, I am sure something less than a ban could also be effective.

"And I did read your posts and I'm sorry for the Obama comment, for a conservative that was a huge insult." - kneejerkreaction

Yes, it was, but I forgive you : )

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kneejerkreaction 4 years, 2 months ago

Satirical, the government mandating child proof lids is a good idea. It has no doubt saved countless young lives and frustrated millions of adults. And a certain amount of regulation makes sense - asbestos, lead paint, spaces between stair rungs, etc. But regulating novelty lighters is just....plain....stupid. And I did read your posts and I'm sorry for the Obama comment, for a conservative that was a huge insult.

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Satirical 4 years, 2 months ago

kneejerkreaction… “Think about it. It's government meddling & spinning their wheels. No good will come out of this.”

Apparently you didn’t read my previous post, so I will attempt to reiterate in hopes you will read this time. What good would come out of the government regulating whether certain medicine were required to have child proof lids? Does the government have any business in doing that?

“Like someone wrote, kitchen knives & scissors are shiny too, what about those?” - kneejerkreaction

Those are not attractive nuisances/dangers. No one is claiming lighters should be outlawed. For the comparison to be valid, you would have to compare it to a teddy bear /doll with knives hidden in it, or a gun in the shape of a video game controller (i.e. potentially dangerous items which attract children who cannot appreciate the risk posed by the object or condition).

“Bigger government/more legislation is not a substitute for personal responsibility. I bet you voted for Obama.” - kneejerkreaction

LOL, you apparently haven’t read any of my previous posts. I am about as conservative as they come. But conservatives (unlike some libertarians) understand not all government is bad, such as the Food and Drug Administration, or the Consumer Product Safety Commission. True conservatives understand government has a role, and one of those roles is to protect the safety of its citizens.

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HOMETOWNBOY 4 years, 2 months ago

OH YEAH! Lets take some more individual rights away from the Amaricans. They are not smart enough to take care of themselves on their own! The reason this country was founded was due to individual rights. The constitution is based on it. Yet more and more those rights are getting taken away. You ever feel like a 10 year old with mom and dad watching over you?

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Paul R Getto 4 years, 2 months ago

Glad they have something to do, while they fiddle and Rome burns (so to speak) Wonder if we can discuss stuff like the state dirt too?

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kneejerkreaction 4 years, 2 months ago

Satirical, this legislation isn't going to protect anyone, it's just silly. Another example of government wasting our tax dollars & taking their attention away from real issues. Think about it. It's government meddling & spinning their wheels. No good will come out of this.

Like someone wrote, kitchen knives & scissors are shiny too, what about those? Are Kansans soon going to be cutting their steaks with wooden knives? Or maybe the government could cut up our meat in little pieces we could just fork. And forks can be stuck into a wall outlet.

Bigger government/more legislation is not a substitute for personal responsibility. I bet you voted for Obama.

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hungryhustler 4 years, 2 months ago

I really got to give to to the LJworld. They sure know what articles write to in order to get a good stir. I'm willing to bet we nothing will become of this. But way to go guys! u gave the ljworld what they wanted....and guess, so did I. ah hell!

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gogoplata 4 years, 2 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Satirical 4 years, 2 months ago

Kneejerkreaction... “...it's still up to the parents to make sure they don't leave their novelty (blank) lighter laying around the house.” - kneejerkreaction

By that logic, there shouldn’t be any government protection or regulation for the safety of children. Oh well if some toys are choking hazards….we don’t need child proof lids on medicine…It’s the parents’ responsibility to keep their kids safe…

“What a waste of time.” - kneejerkreaction

I am guessing you don’t have children

“How many kids have started fires with novelty lighters vs regular lighters & matches? I'd like to see that stat.” - kneejerkreaction

Regardless it is still an attractive nuisance/danger. Some novelty lighters attract children who cannot appreciate the risk posed by the object or condition. I think reasonable efforts to protect children are a valid use of the legislature’s time. Although without reading this bill, I am not sure it is reasonable.

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kneejerkreaction 4 years, 2 months ago

The Kansas legislature needs to do a study on negative effects of the rise in residents' blood pressure when they read nitwit stuff like this. You're killin' me man.

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hillbilly_jim 4 years, 2 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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kneejerkreaction 4 years, 2 months ago

Satirical (Anonymous) says… Not sure why everyone is so upset. Children play with toys. If children play with toy lighters, there is a significant potential for undesirable results. What don't people get?


I think the theme here is that no matter what the legislature passes, it's still up to the parents to make sure they don't leave their novelty dildo lighter laying around the house. Does this mean get ready for a flood of novelty lighters being sold for big bucks on the black market? What a waste of time. And we're paying for it. How many kids have started fires with novelty lighters vs regular lighters & matches? I'd like to see that stat.

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MrMEtoo 4 years, 2 months ago

Tongie_soccer, its a positive thing that you are concerned about the safety issues regarding these, however, this biggest issue that this article presents is that the state of Kansas has much larger issues that our legislature should be dealing with (the economy). This is like patching a sail when the ship has a hole in it.

Leave this issue to the parents of the children for now.

Get your head in the game Kansas legislature.

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jayhoosier 4 years, 2 months ago

Kitchen knives and scissors are also pretty & shiny and dangerous to children. No more kitchen knives or scissors in the house!! Let's keeping taking responsibility out of parents hands. Also, can parents start to look out for their kids and help them with their homework instead of getting them diagnosed for something? We are on a steady decline out of this world and I can't wait!

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kneejerkreaction 4 years, 2 months ago

The Kansas legislature and it's never ending battle to keep the citizens of Kansas safe from.....safe from....from.....well, whatever.....

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Denny2009 4 years, 2 months ago

Politicians really need to get their priorities straight and start addressing more practical issues.

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bowers79 4 years, 2 months ago

Nancy Lusk, its sounds like you don't have a grip on what happens in your own home. If you did, this would not be a concern to you or one of those "Nancy knows best" situations. Here's another thought to people who feel they know what's best for everyone else based on personal beliefs, did anyone hear about that crazy "christian" that killed the abortion doctor? Honestly between job lose, dismal house sales, & a whole mess of other problems that keep Americans out of work, this is what your trying push thru office? Really... No seriously, Really?...

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Satirical 4 years, 2 months ago

While I think less restrictive measures could be taken, such as requiring greater safety devices on novelty lighters to prevent children from accidentally burning someone/thing, I can definitely see the attractive danger/nuisance involved.

Not sure why everyone is so upset. Children play with toys. If children play with toy lighters, there is a significant potential for undesirable results. What don't people get?

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Steve Miller 4 years, 2 months ago

there are other "burning" issues to deal with other than a lighter..... duh !!! what a waste of money, your tax dollars at work... i wonder what special interest group is beind this one ???

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lgreen17 4 years, 2 months ago

The legislators need to get a life! K2 and cigarette lighters?

What about a comprehensive seat belt law?

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Jock Navels 4 years, 2 months ago

hey fellas, watch this: i can light my lucky strike with my 357 magnum...and i got a right to do it!

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Dorthy 4 years, 2 months ago

"The size of the lighter is perfect for a childs smaller hand"...ummm, what about the many other house hold items that kids can get a hold of and harm themselves or others with. Its called PARENTAL SUPERVISION. Learn about it.

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edjayhawk 4 years, 2 months ago

Are you kidding me? Living in this state is a complete embarrassment.

“They’re cute, they’re little, but they are not toys and the consequences of playing with them could be deadly,” he said.

Yeah I like the words COULD BE

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BorderRuffian 4 years, 2 months ago

Stupid, Stupid, Stupid!

I wonder how much of my taxpayer money just got all burned up because of this legislator wanting to get her name in the papers? Shouldn't she be spending more time and effort banning lightning because it causes forest fires and hurts Bambi and Thumper?

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MacHeath 4 years, 2 months ago

its novelty thats the problem. Ban novelty!

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MacHeath 4 years, 2 months ago

ok, just bring back "strike anywhere" stick matches. Watch out for those kids rubbing two stick together. Its just trouble waiting to happen.

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ferrislives 4 years, 2 months ago

How stupid this this idea? Why not ban everything? This is getting out of hand. Our congress needs to focus more attention on balancing the budget and funding KPERS, and less on trivial crap such as this.

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Bob Kraxner 4 years, 2 months ago

This is just another example of a way for parents to shed yet more responsibility when it comes to raising their children. Keep the damn things away from kids, don't leave them laying around.

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Benjamin Roberts 4 years, 2 months ago

ksjayhawk74 (Anonymous) says… "What if I have a novelty lighter that is an actual gun, that also lights cigarettes? ..."

Not quite what you asked for, but someone thought it was ... http://tinyurl.com/yd6xq2h You will have to open the PDF.

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Tongie_soccer 4 years, 2 months ago

Here are some resources:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23784988/

http://www.oregon.gov/OSP/SFM/Novelty_Toylike_Lighters.shtml

http://www.scfirefighters.org/fileadmin/Storage/pdf/Novelty_Lighters_May_7_2009.pdf

http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/citizens/all_citizens/home_fire_prev/noveltylighters/

and a couple of quotes - even lighter producers think they are not needed.

Still, a lighter shaped like a tiny motorcycle was blamed for the death of two children last year in Arkansas. And an Oregon woman was burned when her young child ignited bedding with a lighter that featured a Santa face perched atop a Christmas tree, according to Okulitch's office.

In January, Laura Fowler, of Gladwin, Mich., wanted to give her 4-year-old daughter a treat for cleaning her room. She accidentally bought her a novelty lighter, thinking it was a toy Dalmatian dog.

The girl was playing with the dog when Fowler saw a flash and realized it was a lighter. The girl wasn't injured, but Fowler said it scared them both.

"Now when she sees it, she says 'Owie mom, owie,'" Fowler said.

Dean and other fire officials praised an announcement this week by the Lighter Association, a national trade group, which said its members now support laws to ban the lighters.

"We see no justification for a novelty lighter," said David H. Baker, the organization's general counsel. However, he said his members would like to review some of the proposed measures to make sure they won't affect other kinds of lighters marketed to adults.

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jonas_opines 4 years, 2 months ago

Tongie_soccer (Anonymous) says… “…Maybe we should just say “oh sorry you have 3rd degree burns and might die little boy but your parents really should have put that doggie lighter away so you couldn't confuse it with your toy dalmation”.”

Hmmm. . . of the two people that I know who as kids did things that gave them near-fatal third degree burns, both of them were flicking matches into a bucket with evaporating remnants of flammable liquids. In one case, gasoline, in one case, paint thinner.

If I've learned anything here, it's that my two anecdotes are definitive examples of the over-arching problem, and so I request our legislature to step up banning matches, buckets, paint thinner, and gasoline.

No wait, those are just symptoms. We should finally stop trying to fight the symptoms, and fight the cause.

Ban kids.

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macon47 4 years, 2 months ago

Oletha Faust-Goudeau she be a obama kool aid drinker just looking at the most serious issues must be running for relection and need free press?

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oneeye_wilbur 4 years, 2 months ago

someone mentioned something about being stupid a bill against it or something like that, maybe like consumer1.

Kansas should just have a fee on being stupid and the fee paying would start in Topeka at the Capital. My this state would be in so much money. How much is the fee for stupid? $tupid Fee$ bring in enough money to fund the schools, 'cause the whining parents would pay too, the list of payees is endless.

Stupid is as stupid does and there is plenty of $tupid$ to fund the trough.

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promitida 4 years, 2 months ago

I think I share the same sentiment as several posters. Just...seriously? This is what they're focusing on? Jesus...

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bobberboy 4 years, 2 months ago

This is the only thing that our republican legs can agree on ?

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Benjamin Roberts 4 years, 2 months ago

Tongie_soccer (Anonymous) says… "...Maybe we should just say “oh sorry you have 3rd degree burns and might die little boy but your parents really should have put that doggie lighter away so you couldn't confuse it with your toy dalmation”."

You seem to have some first hand knowledge of this issue. We know that children start a little less than 4% of home fires. Can you tell us how many of the 14,500 annual fires are started with the novelty type of lighter?

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RKLOG 4 years, 2 months ago

Tongie_soccer who cares! It's a waste of time and money.

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RKLOG 4 years, 2 months ago

Total bullcrap. Waste of money and time.

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EXks 4 years, 2 months ago

What's next???? Banning matches!!!

Jez....................

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Tongie_soccer 4 years, 2 months ago

Have any of you posters even looked at some of these lighters? or done any research on the dangers they present? The legislature did not come up with this bill on it's own - it was highly advocated for by many state wide groups including the Kansas PTA, Safe Kids Kansas, and multiple fire departments. There are bills at the National level that were introduces last year as well. I am quite sure you can get your cancer stick to light even if the lighter doesn't look like a Hot Wheel...

and on the subject of parental responsability HA! If all parents were responsible there wouldn't be a need for Child Services. Maybe we should just say "oh sorry you have 3rd degree burns and might die little boy but your parents really should have put that doggie lighter away so you couldn't confuse it with your toy dalmation".

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somedude20 4 years, 2 months ago

urthatguy66044 (Anonymous) says… What ever happened to responsible parenting…?

the way it SEEMS to me is that "responsible parenting" went out the window around the same time that Gerry Rafferty had his last record

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urthatguy66044 4 years, 2 months ago

What ever happened to responsible parenting...?

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lindseydoyle 4 years, 2 months ago

I wish the legislature would work on our real, serious problems but they won't because they are run by the Kansas Chamber of Commerce. And the KC of C wants illegal immigration, our #1 problem.

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rooster 4 years, 2 months ago

Actually chihawkinks, it was a republican senator who introduced the bill on K2.

These folks are truly losers all of them.

With a huge budget crisis looming they are concerned about lighters??

WTF

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ksjayhawk74 4 years, 2 months ago

What if I have a novelty lighter that is an actual gun, that also lights cigarettes?

It's very safe though. The flame comes out of the end off the barrel and there is a little switch that you flip to the right to shoot bullets or to the left to light a cigarette... Or is it flip to the left to shoot? I always forget.

Kansas Legislature wants to protect my kid from the dangerous lighter but I have a permit for the gun so it's cool.

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Benjamin Roberts 4 years, 2 months ago

consumer1 (Anonymous) says… "When will they make a law against being stupid ?"

What difference would it make? Congress always exempts itself from the laws it creates.

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consumer1 4 years, 2 months ago

When will they make a law against being stupid ?

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Steve Bunch 4 years, 2 months ago

Morons, morons, morons. Don't ban the lighters; put an extra tax on them. Sheesh!

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Newell_Post 4 years, 2 months ago

Novelty cigarette lighters or adult marital aids? Some of those things in the photo look like vibrators....

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Newell_Post 4 years, 2 months ago

... actually Pez dispensers were originally marketed as a "stop smoking" aid. The flip top thing was indeed made just like a lighter to try to condition the smoker into eating the little candies instead of lighting up a coffin nail. The first Pez dispensers were even made out of metal like cigarette lighters. But I'm surprised the anti-smokers haven't tried to twist Pez into a kiddie-smoking conspiracy....

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Beer Guy 4 years, 2 months ago

They can take away my Hannah Montana Heroin Kit as long as they don't take away my Paris Hilton Stupid Spoiled Whore Video Play Set.

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Benjamin Roberts 4 years, 2 months ago

"Fire officials said 14,500 structure fires were reported nationwide in 2006 that had been started by children playing with fire. Those fires resulted in 130 deaths."

This is a very sad statistic; however how many of the fires were started with novelty cigarette lighters? During the same period (2006) there was a total of 386,500 home structure fires. Forty percent (154,600) of all home fires originate in the kitchen.

There are already laws prohibiting minors from purchasing lighters. There are laws that dictate lighter safety designs. Another law will do nothing to lower the amount of home fires - unless that law banned kitchens.

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Newell_Post 4 years, 2 months ago

Ban Pez dispensers. They were modeled on cigarette lighters. This was the devil's secret plan to make all children into smokers.

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Nikki May 4 years, 2 months ago

Many of the gas stations don't sell lighters to kids anyway. It's not something that needs legislated. Kids get money from their parents. Parents should know not to by lighters from kids. Seriously, this is the parents' job, not the state.

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Stuart Evans 4 years, 2 months ago

next thing you know, they'll want to take away my Hannah Montana heroin kit.

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George_Braziller 4 years, 2 months ago

What happened to their "brilliant" idea last session to ban selling lighters to anyone under 18? Seems like that stupid one died as fast as it was proposed.

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macon47 4 years, 2 months ago

like they dont have anything better to do or what?

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ChiHawkInKS 4 years, 2 months ago

The people in this legislature (dems specifically) must just sit around all day smelling eachothers farts if this is what they come up with. What a complete and utter waste of time. Its embarrassing.

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BrianR 4 years, 2 months ago

I need my Krusty the Clown lighter to light my K2.

The legislature has seriously outlived its usefulness.

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oneeye_wilbur 4 years, 2 months ago

this is part of a major plan designed to protect the many senior citizens who are moving to kansas, the state wants to make sure they don[t burn themselves by mistake.

Why not a fee on this product? Call it a "safety fee" designed to raise money to have someone from the state fire marshall's office to go around and check out stores, create another job at the expense of selling a product. Kansas sucks and the cities in it are beginng to be just as bad.

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somedude20 4 years, 2 months ago

really? I mean f-ing really? Is this what we pay them for? With ALL of the problems that we are facing in KS they have the foresight to legislate a f-ing lighter and K2, wow you are the hero of the stupid.

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