Can San Francisco kill childhood obesity?
The San Francisco Board of Supervisors recently voted to ban McDonald’s from selling Happy Meals with toys. Don’t worry, they didn’t just single out the Golden Arches, the ban covers all fast food joints that hand out toys with their children’s menu items.
They claim the reason for the ban is because toys are incentives for children to buy Happy Meals thereby perpetuating the obesity problem in the United States.
Um… how many kids under 12 years-old do you know that buy their own meals on a regular basis?
Nope, what the city of San Francisco has voted to do is regulate parents. Essentially what they’re saying is, “Parents, you’re obviously either too stupid or too weak-willed to keep from feeding your kids crappy food, so we’re going to remove one of the incentive elements in the hopes you’ll stop making your kids fat.”
Dear dim-witted, stoned, hippie, tree-huggin’, holier-than-thou members of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, you’re wrong. Parents don’t buy their kids nutritiousless fast food because the meals come with a Buzz and Woody race car, they buy them because the food is quick and cheap. We live in a rushed society, where none of us want to spend a lot of money and McDonalds offers us parents a quick fix, as awful an option as it is.
You want to disincentivize Happy Meals, add a $10 tax. No one’s buying their kid a $13 dollar lunch. But a $3 lunch, hell yeah!
Of course that solution reminds of the argument about gun violence, the problem isn’t that guns are easily available, the problem is the bullets are too cheap. You start charging a $1,000 a bullet, and you’re going to want to make sure you really want to take that shot. You don’t want to waste a grand without a really good reason.
It sounds like a logical argument, but it’s actually pretty stupid.
How about we parents (and gun owners for that matter) show some frikkin’ self-control and restrict our kids from eating bad food? You know what I tell my son when he asks for a cookie before dinner? I tell him no. When he wants a drink of my diet soda? No. When he wants to wear flip flops to daycare instead of shoes? No.
And you know why I tell him no? Because I love him and I don’t want him to get fat, get cancer or get hurt. I’d rather he be pissed at me for 10 minutes for not giving him a treat than have to go through life as a fat load (Daddy already has that covered for the family). I also make sure I tell him why he can’t have what he wants. Not because Daddy is mean or because Jack’s been bad, I tell him he can’t have it because there’s a beneficial reason – staying healthy.
Does that mean he’s never going to have a Happy Meal? Nope. In the first two years of his life he’s had one. It was a treat with his three cousins. There’s a very good chance he won’t get another one for another two years. Why? I’m pretty sure I can come up with healthier alternatives when we’re on the road. You know, like Sonic or Waffle House.
- San Francisco Board Votes to Ban Happy Meals Toys (dailyfinance.com)
- Supes bid adieu to the traditional Happy Meal (sfgate.com)