Saturday, 23 September 2017

How President Donald Trump is Affecting Average Consumers

How President Donald Trump is Affecting Average Consumers

President Trump is ruining the protections average consumers rely on to keep their families safe. It’s no secret that he sees government regulations as the enemy of business. But will eliminating these protections do more harm than good? How will President Trump’s policies impact consumers’ health, safety, and legal rights, as well as the environment? The proposed scaling back of the EPA and FDA could have serious implications that far outweigh the corporate profitability used to justify the cuts. Here’s a brief list of the ways Donald Trump is destroying protections for the average consumer.

Drug Safety

President Trump has vowed to overhaul the FDA, which could result in companies not having to prove that their drugs work in clinical trials before selling them to consumers. Not only would this pose a health risk, but could open the doors to fraudulent claims of efficacy. More drugs to save lives can be a great thing – but hampering regulations in the midst of an opioid epidemic seems like a terrible idea.

Food Safety

Trump has stated that he wants to do away with the “inspection overkill of the Food Police that govern the soil farmers use, farm and food production hygiene, food packaging, and food temperatures.” Of course, these regulations were put in place by congress for a reason. It is their job to protect consumers from deadly and preventable food borne illnesses. Trump doesn’t seem to care. Let’s just hope botulism doesn’t continue to spread.

Environment

Proposed legislation would heavily favor industry over environmental concerns. It would transform the way the EPA combats pollution, identifies harmful pesticides and classifies everyday toxins, such as laundry detergent, window cleaner and clothing dye.

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Here’s a quick example on how Trump’s disastrous stance on the environment affects average consumers:

Environmentalists say they fear a stroke of a pen could eliminate the EPA’s Safer Choice program… The program approves household products such as laundry detergent and window cleaner that are free of hazardous substances.

Even corporations are on the right side of history on this one:

Companies governed by the program say they favor it. Last month, almost 200 corporations, including Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Procter & Gamble Co., Dow Chemical Co. and BASF, wrote to Pruitt, saying it “helps consumers, businesses, and procurement officers/purchasers to identify products that go beyond regular safety standards.”

And to make matters worse, recently dozens of EPA staffers weighed in on the damage Trump is causing. Recap: it’s bad.

Legal Rights

President Trump and the new congress have stated that they want to push for legislative overhauls of class action litigation because they are bad for business. While the statement is plausible, these are important oversights that keep massive corporations from putting profits before people. Suggested legislation changes include trimming consumers’ rights to sue if they develop mesothelioma from asbestos exposure, but such limitations could easily spill into general tort reform which would impact everything from exploding Samsung phones to talcum powder lawsuits over cancer concerns.

Consumers must retain the right to hold corporations accountable for the products they sell. It is fundamental to progressive politics to keep corporate control over our Democracy in the political cross hairs and their influence in the forefront of political discourse.

Ryan Black is a documentary filmmaker, political consultant, and digital media professional who writes about Progressive Politics.

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