Skip to main content

We must control hair lightener and nail polish

Published April 20. 2013 09:02AM

The bombing in Boston earlier this week angered each and every American. The incident demonstrated that Americans are at risk every day on our streets, in our schools, and in our businesses. The Boston bombing would have been difficult to prevent, as we do not track dangerous commodities such as kitchen pressure cookers, hydrogen peroxide and acetone. I'm sure that some people will blame the authorities for the failure to identify and avert this dastardly act. Already, television news stations are showing video of the bombs clearly visible on the ground near the finish line. I've heard some reporters ask why the packages were never inspected. Well the answer is simple. The packages were placed at the feet of spectators cramming the sidewalks. Yes, it was easy to identify the bombs from videotape after the event. The questions asked by these reporters are not only foolish but they belittle our police forces and the efforts they make every day to ensure our security.

From what I've read since the incident, the explosive used to make the bomb was likely acetone peroxide also known as TATP. It is made from hydrogen peroxide and acetone, the main ingredient in nail polish remover. These items can be purchased at any grocery store or pharmacy. To my knowledge, there are no controls over the purchase of these items. Hydrogen peroxide is used in first aid. It is also used to lighten the color of one's hair as an alternative to hair dye.

After the recent shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the politicians were clamoring over each other to pass additional gun control laws. After all, the Obama administration believes that they should let no crisis go to waste. The Boston bombings were a crisis. Therefore, the Boston crisis must be treated the same way as the Sandy Hook crisis. Based on the proposed gun legislation, our politicians should be scampering to propose laws to ban hydrogen peroxide and nail polish, as they are "dangerous terrorist materials". The FEMA Brown Shirts should be going house to house to remove the hydrogen peroxide from our first aid kits and confiscate beauty aids such as nail polish and nail polish remover. After all, even small amounts can be used to make a bomb. Our politicians will claim that hydrogen peroxide is a terrorist weapon and must be controlled.

New York and other states have proposed that ammunition be micro-stamped so that the shell casings can be traced back to the gun that fired them. The politicians and the states actually believe that they can identify a shooter by tracking bullets back to registered guns. They are ignoring the fact that many guns have been illegally transferred or may never have been registered n the first place. At the present time, firearms are not registered to owners at the federal level. This is as it should be. We have the right to bear arms. That means we should be able to purchase guns and ammunition as long as we do not have a criminal record and are of legal age to possess a gun.

Since the politicians are so adamant that guns and ammunition must be controlled, then it is time that they pass legislation to control hydrogen peroxide and nail polish. I propose that we place a chemical signature that is unique to each manufacturer of these "dangerous" products. Using the same procedures as is used here in Pennsylvania to buy a pistol, each person who wishes to buy these "dangerous" substances must complete a form. Anyone who has been to Cabela's or another gun shop knows the procedure. The clerk takes your drivers license and calls the details into the authorities to ensure that you are not a criminal or are not eligible to possess a weapon. When and if the purchase is approved, you get your gun.

Using these same procedures, each purchaser of nail polish remover and hydrogen peroxide must be registered with the state government and the purchaser verified to ensure that they are not a terrorist before the completion of the sale. That way, if your mother's nail polish remover was used in a bomb, we know who to put in jail! It must have been your mother who provided the "weapons grade material" to the terrorist. After all, she purchased the chemicals, the store video confirms the purchase, and the cashier can identify your mother has the purchaser.

I know that this procedure sounds silly. But let's look at it from another standpoint. The Constitution guarantees our right to bear arms. We can own guns, we can own bullets. We can go to shooting matches and firing ranges. We can use guns to protect our homes and their families and when called upon to protect our nation from invaders. Yet our politicians continue to restrict our right to bear arms. As guns become more difficult to acquire, criminals will seek other means to achieve their goals. Building a bomb from common household ingredients can be just as effective as shooting people with semiautomatic rifle or handgun.

Mass killers now know this. More importantly several papers published instructions and diagrams on how the bombs were made. They told us the ingredients to use and they told us how to turn them into a weapon of mass destruction. Place the chemicals into the pressure cooker, attach a detonator, wait for the crowd and trigger the explosion.

The Boston Bombings changed America as we know it. In the days, weeks and months ahead, I believe that there will be more bombings in public places. Just as in the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Israel, the cat is out of the bag. If you want to become instantly infamous as a mass murderer, make a bomb and place it in a public place. I also expect to see car bombs used here in America as they have been used effectively as a weapon of terror in other countries. I don't want to stay locked indoors because of the fear of a mass murder or bombing, however I do want to be prepared for it. In future, I will avoid large crowds. I will be aware of my surroundings. I will be on the lookout for suspicious packages. Just yesterday, I considered purchasing bulletproof vests for my wife and I. ( I was surprised at how inexpensive these vests are. I can buy a vest for each of us for less than the cost of a good handgun. Do we really need to wear bulletproof vests when we go outside?

Has it actually come down to this? Is America now facing the same threats as the United Kingdom? Will all of our citizens have to be trained to identify potential bomb threats and the actions to be taken should they spot a "lost bag". The Boston incident causes me to believe that we must change our way of life. We must be ever vigilant for potential threats. We must be prepared to act in the event of another attack on our civilians. We must protect each other as the police cannot respond instantaneously to every potential threat. I believe the best defense is the offense. If you don't already have one, apply for a concealed carry permit. Once you have the permit, purchase a good handgun and learn to use it at your local gun club. Carry it wherever it is legal to do so. Be vigilant! And most importantly be ready to respond should your life be threatened by a gun toting fanatic.

© 2013 Gordon Smith - All Rights Reserved

Classified Ads

Event Calendar


October 2017


Upcoming Events

Twitter Feed


Bombers get creative with parade floats

40.8014826, -75.6101867

Some of Palmerton’...

Man faces charges for shooting his dog

40.8014826, -75.6101867

Charges have been...

Extension hosts annual dinner

40.7986942, -75.8104747

The Carbon County Ex...

Reader Photo Galleries