America's Pharmacies are Death Traps

A blog about business and economics.
May 2 2013 1:14 PM

America's Pharmacies Are Death Traps Full Of Products That May Injure Our Vulnerable Teens

Hispanic residents walk by a bilingual sign for a CVS pharmacy on March 28, 2011 in Union City, New Jersey.

Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The Obama administration recently announced its intention to continue litigation aimed at keeping Plan B emergency contraception unavailable to young teenagers, citing potential health risks. Safety is important, but I recently took a trip to the CVS that's on the block of Slate's D.C. office and I saw some disturbing things. Leaving contraceptives totally aside, the store turned out to be full of terrifying, dangerous objects.

Razor blades, for example:

razor blades

They also have a chemical compound that literally dissolves hair:


This stuff is EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE and you're also warned that if you ingest it you need to go to a POISON CONTROL CENTER:

nail polish_1

They have spray cans full of neurotoxins sitting adjacent to torch fuel:

bug stuff

These diet pills are "not intended for use by persons under 18" and carry a wide range of potential side effects, but anyone of any age can just walk right up and buy them:

diet pills

I hope someone alerts HHS.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.


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