I read this article on Huffington Post this morning and as usual when I read ridiculous things, I've been stewing and unable to get it out of my head.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
So, yadda yadda yadda, a school district in Baltimore has implemented a "Meatless Monday" in its school cafeterias both as an effort to save money and serve healthier options. All of the local parents are down with it. So what's the controversy? Oh, waaaahhh, the poor meat industry is sad that people are waking up to the idea that Americans consume FAR too many animal products and that maybe it wouldn't kill them to skip it for one meal a day, one day a week.
But don't feel too bad for meat industry lobbyists, they've got everyone's favorite, completely rational and well-informed CNN anchor on their side: Lou Dobbs. Dobbs clearly agrees that this is a part of schools "indoctrinating" our youth. Indoctrinating them with what is unclear. Funny, weren't conservatives throwing that word around a few months ago when Obama was going to speak to school children? He was going to "indoctrinate" them with his lefty "stay in school" values.
Dobbs and his cohorts like Glenn Beck seem to want us living in some kind of idyllic 1950s suburbia (or at least their corporate sponsor's version thereof.) And yet they're putting down pretty traditional values like respecting the President, volunteering in your community, and you know, "EAT YOUR VEGETABLES."
The implication here is that schools are taking away children and parents' choice to eat meat. (I guess I forgot how pro-choice conservatives are known for being.) Somehow, they don't have a problem with the complete LACK of vegan or vegetarian choices for children, but once they can't get their uber-wholesome salisbury steak, the schools are suddenly a police state. And let's not also forget that parents still have the option to send their kids to school with home-made lunches.
I completely understand that this is not always an option for families, which is why I support the Physcians Comittee for Responsible Medicine and their efforts to get healthier vegetarian options into schools. But if parents really are outraged by this policy (which, to be clear, it doesn't seem that any of them are) then perhaps a little effort could be put in to your kid's lunch.
I won't even touch the fallacy presented by this video that meat is the only way to give your kids protein (and the idea that animal protein is a revered nutrient). Now that I'm taking a plant-based nutrition class I can't help but be appalled by how much misinformation the media puts out about health and diet.
Anyway, let's focus on the positive instead. Yay for Baltimore schools and let's just hope that more schools are working with great health directors who can provide reasoned, logical facts instead of political distortions brought about by corporate lobbyists.