Originally published November 26 2014
New pictures of school lunches illustrate America's decline toward third world status
by Daniel Barker
(NaturalNews) It can be assumed that First Lady Michelle Obama had good intentions when she used her influence to foist her Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act on an unsuspecting population of school-aged American children.
After all, obesity, nutrition and hunger are real issues, but the dismal failure of the initiative -- which resulted in the steepest decline in participation in school lunch programs our nation has ever witnessed -- proves that the federal government has no business trying to apply yet another one-size-fits-all solution to a complex set of issues.
#ThanksMichelleObama Twitter campaign seems to illustrate student dissatisfactionMore than a million schoolchildren have refused to eat their lunches in protest of what appears to be a half-baked (pun intended) scheme to reduce the amount of calories in school lunches while simultaneously trying to make sure that everyone gets enough to eat.
And from what many of the photos submitted to the #ThanksMichelleObama Twitter campaign seem to indicate, school lunches don't appear to be getting much better -- they're just becoming smaller.
The hashtag #ThanksMichelleObama was created by kids in protest of the program, which has proved to be highly unpopular among kids and parents.
The silver lining is that the Twitter campaign has not only led to some very humorous posts but also stirred real debate about what can be done at the local level to ensure that kids get enough of the right kind of food, while making it appetizing enough for them to actually want to eat it.
That's a pretty tall order, not only since kids' culinary tastes vary widely, but because there should also be taken into account the time-honored tradition of complaining about school lunches, which is unlikely to disappear anytime soon -- no matter what is on the menu.
Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids act aspires to impossible universal standard for all children In other words, one meal plan will never please everyone, and perhaps it's also impossible to set universal standards for caloric intake and nutrition that apply to everyone. There are significant differences among individual children, such as height, metabolism and the amount of physical activity they engage in. For instance, should a large boy who plays sports eat the same amount and type of food as a small girl who prefers to spend her free time studying?
Obviously, there needs to be some flexibility, and it should be parents and school administrators interacting at the local level to decide what is right for the kids in their communities.
It's also important to make sure that underprivileged kids can get at least one decent meal a day, but many of the photos submitted with the hashtag #ThanksMichelleObama appear to show meals that look to be unfit for a pet, much less a human.
It's impossible to verify the authenticity of the photos that have continued to be posted since the initiative began, but if even half of them are real, it's easy to understand what these kids are so upset about. A number of them show meals that are not only skimpy, but downright disgusting-looking.
On the other hand, there's nothing stopping most parents from packing their own children's school lunches -- in fact, that may be the best solution for those who feel that they aren't getting enough to eat or who don't like the choices available in the school cafeterias.
We don't really need the FLOTUS to dictate what our kids should or should not eat, no matter how honorable her intentions may be.
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