April 27, 2008

Would you stop a car wreck?

If you saw a mother smoking in a car with the windows up and in the back were three small children, what would you do?

If you saw a father driving drunk with children in the backseat, what would you do?

If you saw a grandmother hitting her grandchildren in the park, what would you do?

Most of us would do the right thing.

Now, what if you saw overweight mothers and fathers lining up with their children to go and eat bottomless steak fries at Red Robin? Would you get right in line with them?

We all know smoking and driving and abuse are wrong. But taking our children to McDonald's for 5-6 meals a week, that's OK?

Betsy Hart, host of "It Takes a Parent" radio show in Chicago got me to thinking. She writes in Fredericksburg.com - FOOD A HEALTHY WEIGHT A too-thin trend in America? Fat chance: "

A few years ago, my family hosted a teenage French girl for several weeks during the summer. It was her first time in the United States. She was stunned by three things: American flags flying everywhere; the fact that the only time American news programs focused on other countries was when we were at war with them; and the sheer plethora of food, and thus the size of Americans.

She simply couldn't believe the food that was everywhere. At a church social, in the ice-cream carts as we exited museums, at children's sporting events--and the size of portions in restaurants simply astounded her.

Yet what do any of us do about this portion poison?

What if all of our children's teachers couldn't read? That wouldn't be good role models. But what if the schools advertised the fact that the teachers are illiterate and coming to this school you could get more illiterate.

Now take a look at your local fast food restaurant. Look at the advertising: Our customers are fat, and we can make you fatter.

Take the 1,420-calorie burger sold at Hardee's and Carl's Jr. Arguably, it's the first fast-food sandwich to publicly flaunt its excess of calories and fat.

Andy Puzder figures he'll be forever famous — or infamous — for creating fast food's first edible Frankenstein: the Monster Thickburger.

The food police and media have portrayed the CEO of CKE Enterprises (CKR) as fast food's demon.

But Puzder insists all he's really trying to do is offer consumers what he believes most want: tasty food. "These products sell better than health-conscious products," he says. "We don't tell consumers what they want. They tell us."


Anonymous said...

Fantastic piece and right on target. One of your best! Now if you could only spell "wreck" properly ......... JD ;-)

Ralph said...

Thanks for the comment....and the editing!