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'Innocent' games causing injuries and death across nation

Nearly all of us have heard of some type of seemingly innocuous challenge at least once in our lives. From holding objects in your mouth to the infamous challenge of eating a certain number of soda crackers without drinking any water, these games may seem innocent enough, but many medical experts are saying that they're more dangerous than people think.

With most kids home on winter break across the nation, including here in California, boredom has brought many teens and kids to the internet where hundreds of viral videos, all promoting potentially dangerous games, leave children just a click away from serious injury, or even worse, death.

A majority of the videos challenge viewers to do such feats as swallowing a tablespoon of cinnamon without water, or stuffing as many marshmallows in their mouths as possible then trying to say the words 'chubby bunny'. But doctors warn that what seems like harmless fun can cause violent coughing and choking if the substances come into contact with a person's esophagus or trachea.

Because of numerous reported injuries and fatalities, concerned parents across the nation have raised the important issue of products liability, bringing many to wonder: who should be held responsible if a person is harmed after recreating one of the stunts from the videos? Should the makers of the products be held liable or should the sites where these videos are found be held accountable for hosting suggestive and dangerous content? It's a question that weighs heavily on the minds of our readers and unfortunately, it may take awhile for anyone to have an answer for this serious issue.

Source: USNews.com, "Some Kids Abusing Common Baking Ingredients," HealthDay News, Dec. 26, 2012

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