Well, thank goodness we have First Lady Michelle Obama looking after our school-age children. Even though her last round of rules for school lunches collapsed (thankfully before the hungry kids did), the FLOTUS isn't done yet with her meddling.
In a world where a place that sells sandwiches topped with crumbled up GMO Fritos is touted as healthy, it only makes sense that the woman promoting this restaurant to help fight childhood obesity is in charge of making up rules that are geared to keep kids in line.
The FLOTUS, who seems to be taking lessons from the former mayor of NYC, Mike "Nanny" Bloomberg of the infamous Big Gulp soda pop ban, is now launching an attack on pictures of junk food in schools.
So, for example, if the Coca Cola Company sponsored a scoreboard at a school, they couldn't have a picture of a Coke on there, but they could have a picture of a Diet Coke – you know, the stuff containing the deadly neurotoxin aspartame.
Vending machines can't sell soda pops, but they can sell sports drinks, loaded to the hilt with artificial colors and flavors.
The concession stand at the football game can't have pictures of nachos drenched in cheese, but they can still sell them.
Logos for high-calorie items can't appear on cups, trash cans, on computer screens, or on menu boards.
If the school is having a fundraiser at the local pizza place, they must not put up posters showing the stringy cheesy slices – they have to surreptitiously send a pictureless note home to the parents, so as not to tantalize the delicate children with those evil advertisements.
The FLOTUS said:
"The idea here is simple – our classrooms should be healthy places where kids aren't bombarded with ads for junk food. Because when parents are working hard to teach their kids healthy habits at home, their work shouldn't be undone by unhealthy messages at school." (source)
Her plan is intended to normalize healthy eating and exercise.
"So for them the norm will be fruits and vegetables and not chips and candy. So hopefully in the grocery market they will be begging us for items from the produce aisle instead of from the snack aisle." (source)
This all ties in to the USDA's "Smart Snacks in Schools" standards, which is based on the FLOTUS's ill-fated Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.
"As part of local school wellness policies, the proposed guidelines would ensure that foods and beverages marketed to children in schools are consistent with the recently-released Smart Snacks in School standards," the USDA said. "Ensuring that unhealthy food is not marketed to children is one of the first lady's top priorities; that is why it is so important for schools to reinforce the importance of healthy choices and eliminate marketing of unhealthy products."
The Food and Nutrition Service told the Washington Free Beacon that the rules would be wide-ranging and apply to all areas where students are present up to 30 minutes after the school day ends.
The proposal would only allow advertising for foods that meet the snack standards, which ban snacks that exceed 200 calories, regular sodas, and nearly all other drinks except for "plain water," "unflavored low fat milk," and 100 percent fruit juice. High school students can have carbonated beverages that have fewer than 60 calories. \
"Marketing would be permissible for all beverages that meet the Smart Snacks Nutrition standards, which includes some diet sodas," an official said. "The marketing standards would apply to items such as posters, fliers, and other printed materials, prizes, or other premium items given to students to promote products, cups used for beverage dispensing and various equipment such as the exterior of vending machines, menu boards, coolers, trash cans, and other food service equipment."
"The standards would apply to all areas of the property under the jurisdiction of the school that are accessible to students during the school day," the official added. "Examples of areas affected include the cafeteria, classrooms, hallways, gymnasiums, parking lots, and all other areas of the campus that students occupy before school, during the school day, and for 30 minutes after the school day." (source)
They seem to believe that nurturing little tummies and palates is the responsibility of the federal government. The parents are clearly clueless and must be forced to abide by the government's ideas of what the children should be eating. Remember the pre-school in Virginia that wouldn't allow lunches from home without a note from the child's doctor? Or the roast beef and potato lunch that was "supplemented" for $5 with a handful of HFCS-laden Ritz crackers? Or the "lunch box inspections"?
If it's really the case that the FLOTUS and the USDA want to help our kids be healthier, perhaps these questions could be answered:
- Why is it okay to sell products to kids that contain deadly neurotoxins like MSG and aspartame?
- Why don't they take into account that kids participating in athletic activities require more calories to…participate in athletic activities? What is a 200 calorie snack going to do if you have a two hour football practice?
- Why is it fine for the cafeterias to sell mushed up chicken parts that are batter dipped and drenched in oil?
- Why isn't there a ban on GMOs in schools?
- Why is it that the Obama's kitchen is organic, but the school kitchens are allowed to serve pesticide-soaked produce from factory farms?
- If the goal is to fight obesity, why are products that contain High Fructose Corn Syrup allowed when it has been definitively linked with obesity?
- What about artificial colors and artificial flavors, many of which have been proven to cause learning and attention problems? Shouldn't they be banned from facilities of …well… learning?
All of this garbage is being dished up to the kids, and it's being stamped with the FLOTUS's seal of "HEALTHY."
So what are they really learning? They are learning if something is low in calories it's healthy, and that is simply not true. Many of the "light" foods that are being sold are totally stripped of nutrition along with the extra calories.
How about we just feed them something revolutionary? How about actual FOOD? Organic produce! Meat raised without hormones and antibiotics! Things that don't have ingredients lists! How about this for a zero calorie beverage: WATER! How revolutionary would that be?
Of course, if we did that, the corporate cronies wouldn't make any money, so it's never going to happen. Instead, the schools will continue to instill these false ideals of what is nutritious and healthy in order to set the next generation up to be consumers who are totally dependent on Big Agri and Big Food to sustain them.
Be sure to check out my latest book The Pantry Primer: How to Build a One Year Food Supply in Three Months.