Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Big Brother Breaks Burger-Bauble Bond

Only in California:
A California county is stopping restaurants from using toys to lure children to high-calorie, salt-laden food such as popular "Happy Meals" hawked by fast-food giant McDonald's.

Elected officials in the county of Santa Clara, in the heart of technology center Silicon Valley south of San Francisco, voted Tuesday to enact the ban to fight an "obesity epidemic" sweeping California and the United States.

"This ordinance prevents restaurants from preying on children's love of toys to peddle high-calorie, high-fat, high-sodium kids meals," said Ken Yeager, the county supervisor behind the ban.

"This ordinance breaks the link between unhealthy food and prizes." [...]
There is no conceivable alternate reality in which families will not patronize fast-food restaurants. Kid's meals are a good idea. They are usually cheaper than the adult-sized menu choices and the food usually comes in smaller portions. So the family saves money, less food is left over, and the kid doesn't complain that he didn't get the same calorie-laden monstrosity as his older siblings--especially if his kid's meal comes with a toy--then he's really feeling joy unrelated to trans-fat and he's got something to keep him occupied. Off-hand, I can't remember a kid's meal in a kosher restaurant that includes a toy, but my family sometimes goes to a pizza shop with little coin-operated rides and gum-style-machines that dispense toys. So in solidarity with parents and fast-food entrepreneurs everywhere: let freedom ring and pass the fries.

Crossposted on Soccer Dad

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