The Twinkies Are Going Out All Over Europe…

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Over at BloggingBaby, Jay Allen shines a harsh light on the grim specter of lunchbox tyranny in ye olde Englande:

An ominous new trend is taking shape in the empire of old: [Britain's] Education Secretary Ruth Kelly wants schools to adopt "whole-foods" policies that could regulate the types of foods parents are allowed to pack for their kids….

Sadly, [food impresario Jamie] Oliver himself is on board with lunchtime totalitarianism, saying kids and parents should have no say in whether students eat healthy. I'll take off my libertarian hat for a moment and simply ask: isn't this a lot of fuss to make over one meal a day? So long as parents and kids control what they consume on mornings, nights, weekends and holidays, how much of an impact can lunchbox dictatorship make?

As a parent who packed a lunch heavy on Little Debbie snacks, post-expiration-date Trix yogurt, and Batman-shaped Spaghettios for a four-year-old, I say you can pry the Scooby-Doo fruit-flavored snacks from my kid's cold, rickets-ridden hands.

More here.

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  1. I’ll take off my libertarian hat for a moment and simply ask: isn’t this a lot of fuss to make over one meal a day? So long as parents and kids control what they consume on mornings, nights, weekends and holidays, how much of an impact can lunchbox dictatorship make?

    How different is this, really, from saying “Isn’t being forced to go to church on Sunday a lot of fuss to make over one hour per week? So long as you’re free to practice or ignore religion as you choose the rest of the week, how much of an impact can one hour on Sunday make?”

  2. Yes, but will they mandate that each child’s lunch contain a minimum amount of Victory Gin?

  3. If the one meal won’t make such a difference then why are you fighting for it? (rhetorical question)

  4. In case one of our hardcore literalists shows up and lectures me on the difference between freedom of religion versus freedom to eat junk food, let me just clarify: I have NO patience for the notion that it’s okay to give up freedom or deal with government bullshit so long as it “only for a little while” or “not big deal, really.”

  5. I think this illistrates why government education is intollerable to begin with.

  6. Don’t discount the street value of those twinkies and li’l debbies. It’ll get your homework done, buy off a bully, etc. No kid is going to do those things for a stick of cold broccoli.

  7. Jennifer,

    Your point is well taken. If any misguided “literalists” pick a fight with you over that, I say, lemme at ’em!!!

  8. If the one meal won’t make such a difference then why are you fighting for it?

    Game, set, match.

  9. the real question is, is soylent green organic?

  10. Don’t discount the street value of those twinkies and li’l debbies. It’ll get your homework done, buy off a bully, etc. No kid is going to do those things for a stick of cold broccoli.

    If Twinkies? are outlawed, then only the criminals will have Twinkies?!

  11. All I know is that at lunch, a child shouldn’t have any pudding until they’ve eaten their meat.

    How can you have your pudding when you haven’t eaten your meat!

  12. “isn’t this a lot of fuss to make over one meal a day?”

    Actually, this is consistent. Lunch falls within the time period the State assumes ownership of the child. Since the State assumes control over pretty much everything else, including how the child is to think, why not what goes in the child’s stomac?

  13. why not what goes in the child’s stomac?

    Well then the state should also regulate what comes out the other end. All Bran and enemas for everyone!

  14. Since the State assumes control over pretty much everything else, including how the child is to think, why not what goes in the child’s stomac?

    If this were a case of the state outlawing certain foods in school-provided lunches, that would be okay. But here the Stae is placing burdens on what parents do outside of school hours when they’re packing their kids’ lunches.

    I wish the law made a distinction between things you CAN’T do (like murder or steal) versus things you MUST do (like pay taxes or get a car registration). This British thing combines the worst of both–a Can’t-law combined with a Must-law. (Can’t pack this, must pack that instead.)

    I hope the kids of Britain stick this edict between a marhmallow and some chocolate and turn it into a S’more.

  15. I’d pack my kid with a car-battery-powered EZ Bake oven. Ding-Dongs for EVERYONE!

  16. As a parent who packed a lunch heavy on Little Debbie snacks, post-expiration-date Trix yogurt, and Batman-shaped Spaghettios for a four-year-old, I say you can pry the Scooby-Doo fruit-flavored snacks from my kid’s cold, rickets-ridden hands.

    Now THAT’S comedy! Seriously, I think I just pissed me pants.

  17. In the US, we have Barbra Streisand and other addle-brained celebrities to give us ill-informed leftist policy suggestions. In the UK, they have the Naked Chef.

    I hope Jamie Oliver is smart enough not to fry bacon.

  18. First, they came for the Ding-Dongs…

  19. “So long as parents and kids control what they consume on mornings, nights, weekends and holidays, how much of an impact can lunchbox dictatorship make?”

    Why do you assume parents are going to be left free to choose whatever they want to feed their children at those times?

  20. Jamie Oliver has shown that, for the same price, schools can help kids eat healthier by replacing junk food in the cafeteria with meals made from scratch (L.A. Times article here). Too bad that he and the government Fat Police want to jam the cuisine down parents’ and kids’ throats.

  21. I’m not sure Europeans know what a s’more is — or what a Twinkie is, for that matter. I wonder what the British junk-food equivalents are: Swiss rolls? Bakewell tarts? Chocolate digestive biscuits? Mars bars (without almonds; essentially a Milky Way)? I also see a lot of complaints made about “turkey twizzlers”, whatever those are (poultry-flavored licorice? no, probably nuggets).

  22. No, no, In Britain, desserts need to have disgusting names like spotted dick, or eel pie.

  23. Mike H: that’s not comedy. That’s my 3.75 year old’s lunch if I forgot to pack it the night before and have to do it in a hurry while trying to get out the door to grandma’s and then to work…meals from scratch? My butt.

  24. Here’s the most disturbingly Orwelling quote from the RedNova article: “[the panel] concludes that it is ‘only by constructively controlling choice that we will widen children’s food experiences’.”

    Constructively controlling choice? What a great way to say “telling you what you can and can’t do”. I have a strong desire to constructively control my steel-toed boot up their ass.

  25. I’m betting a lot of lunches in British schools will go into the trash. I remember elementary school lunches in the early-mid 60’s were heavy on kid-friendly faves like stewed tomatoes and beets (not to mention prune whip cake — did they think we were constipated?). Lots of stewed tomatoes and beets in the trash bin, and damned little in kids’ stomachs.

    Hmmm… maybe they’ll need to hire squads of enforcers to ensure the tykes actually eat their lunches (by force if necessary).

  26. These are the people whose resolution kept them going through the WWII air raids of London, and who gave us parliamentary democracy, and stuff. Yet they’ve come to this. Sad, and either a grim harbinger or cautionary tale for us.

    Sigh.

  27. I’m sure the British lunchladies aren’t going to be bothered with snooping into kids’ lunches to see what they’re eating…. Right? I mean, how do you enforce this? This sounds to me like a whole lot of noise about nothing.

  28. Poco is right, ‘Twinkies’ are utterly unknown in Britain. However Rhywun will be interested to learn that the ‘dinnerladies’ (as lunch ladies are called here in Britain) are being trained up to spot signs of ‘child abuse’ and report suspicions of such incidence to the’authorities’.

  29. OK, from further research I learn that Turkey Twizzlers are like curly fries made with (30%) turkey. Ew. Looks more like intestines.

  30. Didn’t Pat Buchanan’s book prove there aren’t any children in Europe anymore?

    Except for the wogs’ kids, of course.

    Maybe that’s why they’re banning Cadbury choclates?

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