Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The phrase "patently ridiculous" comes to mind

I grew up in (among other places) Santa Clara County, California, so when that county made national headlines for being - well, patently ridiculous - I just had to read the whole story.

Before I begin, some disclaimers:

1. I do not eat at McDonald's.
2. I don't have kids, but I don't think my little siblings should eat the crap that McDonald's sells.
2. I am a believer in healthy eating.
3. I believe that any establishment that sells food (or what they purport to be food)should tell you exactly what's in it.

However, my home county deciding to outlaw Happy Meal toys - I kid you not - is just unbelievable. Their reasoning: it'll take the lure of the toy away from the high-fat, unhealthy crap that McDonald's masquerades as "food" that is leading kids to end up looking like Grimace. (That's the purple guy above.)

Oh, bravo. Forget the big, insane government angle of it - how about parenting? Are we so pathetic as a society, are we so bad helping our children make good nutritional decisions, that the county supervisors now have to do it for us?

And what's next? Are the food police going to ban toys in sugary breakfast cereals? Contests from candy and gum manufacturers? Can you say Big Brother?

What's your take on this?


mac said...

I think it's ri-goddamn-diculous!

I suppose we could blame Ronald McDonald for making us fat. just like we could blame Jack Daniels for making us drunks. Or, Chevrolet for making us lazy, speed freaks.

Or, we could take responsibility for our own actions. Face it folks, our kids are fat because WE feed them junk.
And some of those happy meal toys are just cool! Why can't I have one if I want?

I call Bullshit on your Home County, RK. This does smack of Big Brother :(

Snaggle Tooth said...

I agree with the Big Bro angle here- overly controlling!
Folks only buy kid meals for the toy- we know this- News said that idea is going national!

Senorita said...

I live here in Santa Clara County and I didn't know this.

This is so recockulous, parents can't even parent their own children anymore so we have to rely on the government to police them.

Shionge said...

I am guilty at times McDonald for my daughters and trying my best to introduce healthy food for them.

I hear you RK :D

Fireblossom said...

This is outrageous. Legislating against junk food is going way too far. Pretty soon a government lackey is gonna show up at our residences every evening to make sure we floss.

And for the record, I love to go to McDonald's occasionally. It tastes good and does no harm once a month or so. It's living on junk food that's a problem. Have you seen "Supersize me?" Still, govt should butt out.

Anonymous said...

This is what happens when hippies are allowed to run around unchecked. They start making laws that take away personal responsibility.

I've never in my life had a happy meal. When I was a child, my mother wouldn't let me eat McDonalds too often because she was a parent who parented.
"Mommy mommy mommy! Can you buy me that?"
It's not complicated at all.

Lynn said...

I think it sounds as if they don't have enough to do. Yes - just crazy.

Anonymous said...

That's funny because I saw a show on PBS where kids were eating hot fudge Sundays while mom is in the back room getting her "medicinal marijuana."
The constituents that wanted that legislation must have just had their Rx for Valium revoked. Now it is just too painful to listen to the chubby little brat in the back seat cry over a happy meal.

Granny Annie said...

Hellooooo! I believe we almost have enough government control that we will be able to place our newborn children on the conveyor belt of life and they will sail through without harm or without experience and definitely will want to know what the words "Pleasure" or "fun" mean.

Mike_D said...

First, two points to Senorita for using the term "recockulous" in a sentence. Howyoudoing?

Second, wow. Supervisor Donald Gage apparently didn't need fast food to become a fat ass, even without the toy.

This pisses me off. What gives you the right to do that? That Mickey D's will soon shut down. Why bother to go there if there ain't no payoff?

I am, of course, a Taco Bell and Wendy's patron....

Sidhe said...

Add my support for the usage of recockulous in a sentence. I will admit that it was the first thought that I had when I read your post RK but someone beat me to it and so I'll have to revert to my second variation...redonkulous.

I'm feeling the big brother angle, in this and so much more these days. When did the expectation of parents to parent disappear? Surely the demise of that expectation has been gradual or we would have noticed. Right?

Fast food sucks, sure its unhealthy if enjoyed in excess but it's my job to make those decisions for my family, including the decision to invite more of those annoying happy meal toys into my car and house!

McGriddle Pants said...

I guess I can applaud them for trying to make their community healthier. HOWEVER, big government? Get out of my McRib sandwich.

It all comes down to parenting, to which many people in our country don't want to do. Its just too easy to have "good tasting" fatty and sugary foods for dinner, as opposed to making quality dinner and quality time with your family. A few of my friends parent this way. Its infuriating to me, but I guess I don't truly know the frustrations of parenthood (hence why I don't have children just yet).

A friend got me watching Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution (heard of it?) He goes to the unhealthiest city in America and tries to teach them better eating habits. In the process he uncovers some SCARY and UNSETTLING habits and facts about food and families and schools. I highly suggest you watch it. Its crazy and fascinating! (online at abc.com)

Riot Kitty said...

Funny story - I e-mailed my dad and my 31-year-old brother, who both live in that county, and said, "WTF is going on?!" And my brother, who frequently babysits our younger sibs, says he agrees with it!

Logical Libby said...

I'm not worried about the toys. I'm worried about that pedobear clown they have working for them.

G said...

What do you mean I have to take responsibility for my actions.



Seeing Eye Chick said...

I think it's awesome. Those are toys of questionable quality, who knows what is in the paint or the material used to make them--lead, cadmium, arsenic, mercury? Your guess is as good as mine. And then there is this other issue, sweat shop labor used to make these miniature pieces of crap I wouldn't buy anyway. And then, relatives who go there or other places that give away toys, you end up with a garbage bag full at the end of each quarter, everybody giving your kid a toy, because you know, your kid is probably neglected or something. So who gets to pull these tiny pieces of shit out of the toilet? Out of the Dog's Butt? Out of the Vaccum cleaner? It's not Ronald, that's who! I go to thrift stores and I see enormous bins full of them. How many trees did they kill to make this stuff? To package them? To ship them from China or Mexico or wherever to here? How much fuel was burned? How many holes in the ozone, and how many hundreds of years will they spend in a land fill before they break down into soil?

If you want to give my kids a toy, try crayons or sidewalk chalk. Those are good items we can use. Prisms, a spy glass? things like that. Something that actually does something meaningful, that can be played with, but also serves some greater purpose.

But then I don't buy McDonalds anyhow and the annoying toy giveaway is just one more thing that annoys me about that franchise.

Darth Weasel said...

sad face goes here...I had responded to this once. but it is not on here. Grr.

less government > more government.

LL Cool Joe said...

Looks like I missed the party. I totally agree with Fireblossom's comments. :)

Ily said...

The ONLY reason I'll take my kids to McDonalds:

We're late for an event, we're on the road and they both promised me to order a healthy side with whatever crap they're having for a main "meal."

Taking the toy out of a Happy Meal...well, that's like taking the tootsie roll out of a tootise pop! It's not right!!

PS - My word verification: latin. ;) Ay, they know me here, Chica! lol

Seeing Eye Chick said...

Try going to a Sonic. They at least give out Science based toys, like Bug catching stuff, magnefying glasses, and things like that. They even gave out these little nature journals once. My kids loved that. They still have them. Tiny lanterns. They also give out these cool puzzles, that fold into different shapes, and have different factoids on them about things like Volcanoes or the Weather. --

JLee said...

The first thing that comes to mind is the Big Brother thing. Ridiculous. People should make their own choices. I know McDonalds is crap, but heck, I will eat it every now and then, and damn it, I want my toy!! lol

Ally said...

I read about that. Such a bunch of BS man. I have to admit, though I'm now dieting like a fiend and eating healthier, there are the occasional nights when I crave a four-piece nugget or cheeseburger happy meal. Let parents decide. I don't know. I don't have kids either so... I just hate when someone else makes the rues for us.

Riot Kitty said...

I have to say - speaking of toys in the toilet, Seeing Eye Chick, my brother once did throw a stuffed doll of mine in the toilet! Luckily no one had used it...

Darrin.. said...

What's happening to us as a country? It seems like government keeps gaining ground on taking our freedom of choice.. Heck... free will away. Ridiculous indeed.

Aliceson said...

We try not to eat at McD's very often because I agree, the crap they sell barely resembles actual food. That said, when we do go, it is a treat and as crappy and possibly dangerous as those toys may be, the kids love them and as a parent, I make sure that my kids use them in a proper way (not chewing off the possible lead paint) and take them away if they do. It's called active parenting, I think more people with children should try it.