Childhood Obesity, Whose Fault Is It, Really?
Over the past couple of years, we have been bombarded with scare stories of how the children today are so overweight. Just this past weekend I was watching the news and again there was a story on child obesity. They showed the shots we have all seen hundreds of times, the fat asses, the big bellies and muffin tops, pretty disgusting. I just happen to be going to the mall that day so it was fresh on my mind. I made a mental note to make sure I looked around the mall to see all these fatty children. When I got there I bought a big salty pretzel and a large soda and sat in the center of the mall just to see for myself how many fatty’s I would see. Well I sat there for 45 minutes and low and behold I saw not one child that I would call obese. Sure there were some that were heavier than others, but nothing like I was seeing on the news clips. The only people I would call obese were a few adults, but they were few and far between. So as I was sitting there it dawned on me, every time I saw the news story about child obesity they always showed the same clips of the same children at the same places. So I had to start thinking, is this problem as serious as the government is telling us? Maybe it’s only in small pockets of the country? That would explain why they keep showing the same news clips over and over again of the same fatty children at the same places. And why is the government getting involved in what we eat anyway.
There is now a big outcry from our government that too many of our children are overweight. So what do they want to do? They want to start taxing high calorie, high fat foods so our children won’t eat as much. As usual, the government has it all wrong. The problem is not so much what our kids are eating, but a lack of activity. When I was a kid we drank soda, we ate potato chips, pretzels, candy, cookies, cakes, pies and everything else that kids eat today. The big difference is that we went outside and played. Today kids watch T.V., play video games, text each other on their cell phones, and sit in front of their computers. They lock themselves up like moles, and then we blame it on their eating habits. Our kids need to get off their asses and start being active again. We need to let them be kids and do kid things. What do we expect? Our kids are not allowed to play tag or dodge ball at school, or play on the jungle bars. They are not allowed to play anything else the school deems dangerous. Or even worse, be competitive. It’s no wonder our kids are overweight. It’s not so much what they are eating that’s making them fat, it’s a lack of activity.
When I was a kid, on Saturday mornings I would watch cartoons on T.V. like every other kid did as well. I remember my mother walking by, shutting off the T.V. telling me, “go outside and play, it’s a beautiful day out.” The thing is, she would say the same thing even if there was two feet of snow on the ground. Parents back then knew the health benefits of playing outside. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know if the body is active, and you get plenty of fresh air, you will be a healthy person. Parents out there need to remember that simple phrase that my mother used to say. If you use it, you might be surprised that your children might just lose some weight.
Now the government comes up with the bright idea of changing the menu for school lunches, giving the kids more healthy choices. On the surface that sounds great, I am all for choice. But it cost the government millions to do this, as soon as they did, this old saying came to mind, “you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink” so what happened? “You can put broccoli on a kids plate, but you can’t make them eat it.” That is exactly what happened, the kids never ate the healthy foods, and it was just thrown into the garbage, along with our tax money. I could have told them that would happen. Parents have been taking care of kids long before there was a government. Let our kids eat what parents think they should eat, but more important, kick them out of the house and let them play, and keep the government out of our lives, because our government lacks common sense.
This is one man’s opinion