Maine Becomes First State To Ban Styrofoam Food Containers In 2021

Photo by  Oliur  on  Unsplash

Photo by Oliur on Unsplash

New York City’s ban on single-use foam products went into effect January 1, 2019. Banned products include single-service items, including: cups, bowls, plates, takeout containers, trays, packing peanuts, coolers.

The restriction on the sale, possession or use of banned foam products is only for businesses, agencies, institutions, and non-profits outlined in the law. The New York City restriction is not intended for residents.

Several other cities in New York state have joined New York City. Around America, Seattle, WA, Washington DC, Miami Beach, FL, Portland, OR and several other Oregon cities, Minneapolis, MN, Nantucket (city & county), MA, Los Angeles & San Francisco, CA; and in Maine Portland and Freeport.

The Story of Stuff keeps us abreast of the latest developments.

Maine Bans Styrofoam

Maine is now the first state to ban Styrofoam food containers. The bill, signed into law on Tuesday, with an effective date of January 2021 prohibits convenience stores, restaurants, grocery stores, farm stands, and coffee shops from using containers made of polystyrene, which is more commonly referred to as Styrofoam.

“Polystyrene cannot be recycled like a lot of other products, so while that cup of coffee may be finished, the Styrofoam cup it was in is not,” Maine Gov. Janet Mills told CNN affiliate WMTW in a statement. “In fact, it will be around for decades to come and eventually it will break down into particles, polluting our environment, hurting our wildlife, and even detrimentally impacting our economy.”

Foam food containers made of polystyrene are among the 10 most commonly littered items in the US, and more than 256 million pieces of disposable Styrofoam products are used every year in Maine , according to the Natural Resources Council of Maine.

VOX digs deeper into the ban, exploring the complexities of banning the very lightweight Styrofoam. “Trevor Zink, an assistant professor of management at the Institute of Business Ethics and Sustainability at Loyola Marymount University, told Martinelli that polystyrene is so light, it has “lower production and transportation impacts than other products.”

Translated, both transportation costs — and carbon emissions — increase with heavier weight shipping materials.

NRA Puts Nancy Pelosi + Gaby Giffords Out For Target Practice. Will Sandy Hook Ruling Dampen Their Machismo?

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The National Rifle Association left little to the imagination in their March 2019 issue of American Rifleman, citing Democrat Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, and gun control advocate, former Arizona Congresswoman Gabby Gifford — herself an assault rifle victim — as in the line of fire and perhaps in need of a little target practice.

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On Feb. 18th, US District Judge Amy Berman Jackson found herself in the crosshairs after rejecting Roger Stone’s effort to get his case reassigned to a new judge. A target symbol appeared next to Judge Jackson’s head.

Stone later shared a statement — which he reiterated when reached by BuzzFeed News — saying, "This was random photo taken from the internet .Any [sic] inference that this was meant to somehow threaten the Judge or disrespect court is categorically false."

There’s no doubt that these are macho men. The white nationalist assassin from Australia who Facebook livestreamed with his assault on two New Zealand mosques Friday is also a macho man. that currently leaves 50 dead and 50 hospitalized — many in critical condition.

On Thusday, March 14th, the Connecticut Supreme Court overturned a lower-court ruling, agreeng with Connecticut’s Sandy Hook families that the marketing employed by Remington Arms, a major manufacturer of deadly assault rifles and specifically the AF15, was so aggregious in appealing to men’s “killer instincts” that it transgressed against federal immunity laws that protect gun manufacturers from liability.

Connecticut law, the court wrote in the majority opinion, "does not permit advertisements that promote or encourage violent, criminal behavior." While federal law does offer protection for gun manufacturers, the majority wrote, "Congress did not intend to immunize firearms suppliers who engage in truly unethical and irresponsible marketing practices promoting criminal conduct, and given that statutes such as CUTPA are the only means available to address those types of wrongs, it falls to a jury to decide whether the promotional schemes alleged in the present case rise to the level of illegal trade practices and whether fault for the tragedy can be laid at their feet."

The NRA and Roger Stone will swear on a Bible that their words and pictures aren’t really meant to incite violence against Nancy Pelosi and Gaggy Giffords. We’re just clutching our pearls!! But if the US Supreme Court let’s the Connecticut Supreme Court decision stand, we might find fewer prominent women in the crosshairs of America’s macho men. Given Gabby Giffords permanent brain disability, and the mounting dead carcasses at the hands of testosterone-infused nationalists worldwide, we have every right to be concerned. One social conservative determined to kill me for supporting Planned Parenthood on TV is enough.

Read on in Salon. Sandy Hook Lawsuit Court Victory Opens Crack In Gun Maker Immunity Shield

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NH Legislators Insist Wearing Pearls To Oppose Gun Control Legislation Doesn't Mock Moms With Dead Kids

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It seems that Republican male legislators in New Hampshire are really taking the gloves off -- wearing pearls to mock moms involved in trying to act against gun violence. The trope of pearl-clutching, easily-offended liberals has a tradition in American politics.

"Male New Hampshire lawmakers on the hearing committee wearing pearls to mock Moms Demand Action volunteers and gun safety advocates," wrote Shannon Watts, founder of the gun control group Moms Demand Action, to describe the picture above.

Her post condemning the men quickly spread, accruing more than 6,000 shares and almost 5,000 comments, writes the BBC.

Debra Altschiller, a Democratic representative who sponsored the bill, tweeted: "Disappointed in the pearl clutching by @NHGOP [New Hampshire Republicans]. There are families who have lost loved ones here and this mocking prop shows how little they empathise with suicide."

"Mocking mothers isn't brave," read one comment, which received more than 6,000 "likes". "Lowly weak men mocking women don't scare us."

Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense founder Shannon Watts joins other gun-safety advocates for a news conference to introduce legislation to expand background checks for firearm sales in the Rayburn Room of the U.S. Capitol Jan. 8, 2019, in Washington.  via CBS News

Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense founder Shannon Watts joins other gun-safety advocates for a news conference to introduce legislation to expand background checks for firearm sales in the Rayburn Room of the U.S. Capitol Jan. 8, 2019, in Washington. via CBS News

Republicans have responded that they were standing in solidarity with a pro-gun women’s group "The use of pearls date back to 2016 and the legislators and Second Amendment supporters were in no way wearing them in a mocking fashion to those who came to testify yesterday.

"They are a symbol of solidarity with the Women's Defense League and the Second Amendment community in the Granite State." CBS News reports that Kimberly Morin, the leader of the Women's Defense League, told media that its members first wore pearls 2016, when it showed support for a bill allowing gun owners to carry concealed weapons without a permit.

Morin said the pearls are worn "in defense of women's rights”, adding "We are moms just like they are only on different sides."

The New Hampshire hearing focused on a so-called "red flag" bill that empowers family members or law enforcement officers to go to gain court approval to temporarily take guns away from people who may pose an immediate threat to other people and themselves. Fourteen states have already passed such laws, according to The Associated Press.   

Margaret Tilton of Exeter, whose son George died by suicide in 2017 at the age of 23, testified in front of the pearl-wearing men, according to the AP. Tilton told the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee that police were able to convince him to hand over a gun in 2016, but he was able to buy another one.

In this case a picture is worth a thousand words, and the perception of men wearing pearls as mocking women has far greater probable impact, given the constant mocking of progressive female values by Republicans.

Hey, when you're drowning in your own testosterone and Biblical interpretation that women must submit to you, I guess this is how Repubs treat women trying to save lives in the most violent developed nation on Earth. Funny how God didn't rain guns in all those other countries, just the USA. We're so special.

In 2012, as the Republican War on Women was roaring into high gear, Slate wrote: ‘A Plague of Pearl Clutching’. AOC notes that the far left has also used the expression of pearl-clutchers to describe Hillary Clinton supporters as making a big deal of events like this one but not being willing to take to the streets to truly fight Republicans.

New Hampshire members of Moms Demand Action.

New Hampshire members of Moms Demand Action.