Chalk one up for the good guys. San Francisco has struck a blow to one pillar of the Unholy Trinity (McDonald's, Jerry Springer, and Family Guy). The Golden Gate City has instituted a ban preventing McDonald's from including toys with its grossly unhealthy Happy Meals.
If it wants to continue to include toys in its kid's meals, the Mac and Don boys will have to do the unthinkable--make the meals healthier for children.
According to the new guidelines, McDonald's would have to do the following to keep including toys in those cute little packages of premature heart disease and diabetes:
- The meal cannot exceed 600 calories.
- Must include half cup of vegetables.
- Limits on sodium content and fat calories.
- Must include a multigrain item.
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We can already hear the masses shouting for their right to choose what they feed their kids. But you know what? If you can't make good decisions, they should be made for you. Giving in to your whiny brat's tirade and buying them a calorie and cholesterol-ridden meal is just not good parenting. There are tons of other, healthier quick-fix choices out there. And the truth is--the kid only wants the toy. They'll eat cardboard and sand just to get that shiny, colorful choking hazard in their grubby little hands. How about these parents stop being so lazy and make their kid a sandwich? Add a banana and a glass of milk, and they're golden.
The real question is WWMD? Will McDonald's decide to make an example of the children of San Francisco? We can envision the board of directors cracking their knuckles and voting in favor of "sending a message" to kids and legislators nationwide--step off if you know what's good for you.
Maybe McDonald's will give in to these rational requirements but hike up the price of a Happy Meal to the point where it extends our current recession. Or will it go the way of the USDA's 1981 faux pas in deciding to classify ketchup as a fruit/vegetable in student's lunches? We know the executives at McDonald's can be very creative; perhaps they will coat the McNuggets in the aforementioned sand and call them multigrain.
As a "free" country, albeit one that doesn't allow gays to marry or serve openly in the military, we should be able to make our own choices when it comes to ourselves, but not when we are playing with the lives of others. Kids don't know any better about the crap they put in their mouths--they eat balloons, for God's sake.