So Monet Parham is suing McDonalds because her kids are forcing her to buy happy meals so they can get the free toy. First of all, these kids are dumb, the toy isn't free - it's part of the $4.95 you pay to get the meal. Second of all, her kids are 6 and 2. Now I know there has been some recent violence noted in the media involving some 7 or 8 year old kid blowing his mother away, but let's, for the sake of my argument, assume they aren't actually putting a gun to mommy's head. Hell, the two year old can barely talk.
Does anyone else have a problem with this? The crux of her argument is that the kids demand they get a happy meal each week for the toy, which in turn will make them fatty fatty fatties, because they're eating from Michelle Obama's favorite restaurant.
Perhaps it's because I came from a structured environment growing up, but in my house, the kids didn't demand crap. Believe me, I tried, but it always ended the same way - a swift smack on the ass and 15 minutes on the stairs. It was during these times on the stairs that I was able to study for the GMAT's.
I'm sure you all remember the infamous "coffee was hot" McDonalds lawsuit. What some people may not realize is that this tubby woman's argument was actually brilliant. She wasn't suing because the coffee was hot. In fact, she was suing because she contended McDonald's was intentionally making the coffee too hot, in order to keep the "for here" customers waiting long enough for it to cool down, so they'd go back and buy another Mcgriddles. Seriously brilliant.
That's what this woman is trying to do, but on a much dumber level. She, too, is arguing that the happy meal toy, like the too hot coffee, is a subversive message from McDonalds saying "we gotcha, now we're gonna real you in." Unfortunately, her suit fails in one important aspect.
SHE IS FRIGGIN ARGUING THAT HER KIDS ARE MAKING HER BUY IT!!!
Forget for the moment that she is wasting her time on this lawsuit, and therefore being a terrible mother in the process. Forget for the moment that recent legislation is trying to allow the government to have more of a say in our diet. At the root of this, the woman can't control her kids. That's a real problem, because I'm sure she's not alone.
My co-writer wrote an post in the past about parental responsibility and it holds true again here. Children are dependent beings. More so than any other species by far. Tell you what, your kid wants McDonald's and you wont give it to him? By the third day of his Gandhi-like protest, he'll eat a sweaty gym sock.*
Truth is we're a society of the "pass the buck" philosophy. Fat people are fat because people make them eat shitty foods. Kids are bad because of violence in the media and crappy teachers. And wife-beaters hit their wives with soap in a sock because she lost the blood stained denim button-down shirt (sorry, been watching a lot of Twin Peaks lately...). Until we accept personal responsibility for the things we can control, you'll see the government continuing to intervene under the rouse of "the people's best interest."
You know what, I've already got the TSA doing things I normally pay Elliot Spitzer money for, Michelle Obama counting my carbs, and the FDA pulling their endorsement of my (incredibly successful) late term breast cancer meds [hint: prelude to rationing]. I think I'll take my chances raising my own kid, thanks.
*I'm not advocating starving children, merely making a point that kids will eat what is put in front of them. Especially 6 and 2 year olds, who can't just go eat at a friend's house.