Not-So-Happy Meals

Posted: 2010/11/14 in Blog

Unhappy Meal

I must start this particular rant on parental responsibility by stating that I am not a parent.  A community has recently pushed legal measures preventing toys being given away in unhealthy meals.  Apparently rather than teaching their children to follow directions, they’re showing their children that it is better to give directions.

The toy in the Happy Meal is a long standing icon in Americana.  It’s something fun that you get to do every once in a while when your parents take you out for fast food.  Yes, it is a tactic used by executives to drive sales and get children to ask for the treat more often, but it is the consumer/parent choice to say yes or no to these ads, not the child’s.

More and more I see our culture participating in fail enabling.  Parents have now fail enabled themselves and their children by removing having to say no to something and explaining why they said no.  These parents should grow a freaking backbone and stand up to their kids!  A serious problem that we have in this country today is the fact that our children are being allowed to just float through without ever getting to learn lessons of their own.  If we remove the flame from the stovetop oven, our children will be safer from it; if the kid gets a little burn from fire they’re now smarter and know ‘fire bad.’  By removing the toy/unhealthy meal, it removes the parent explaining why the meal is bad.  The child will now just grow up unaware of poor food choices and binge on it when they get old enough as they no longer know any better. 

I know that my point is slightly stretched out, but it is truly part of a larger problem in our society today.  We are telling our children that they can accomplish anything without showing the obstacles of life; we are letting our kids think that it’s not just about succeeding or winning, it’s just about trying.  This has led to a generation that is only happy with instant gratification as anything that takes effort to do just must not be the right way to do it.  Why is China surpassing us and India catching up to us?  Their citizens have to work hard to achieve ANYTHING in life.  They can’t just sit quietly in the background while their family or the government cares for them, they have to work hard for every meal they eat and they have to sweat for every luxury.

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