Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Soft Target

Back in 2011, Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) supported Michelle Obama’s campaign to get kids to eat healthy foods.

I think it’s a really good goal to encourage kids to eat better. You know, I’ve– I’ve struggled with my weight for thirty years and it’s a struggle. And if a kid can avoid that in his adult years or her adult years, more power to them. And I think the first lady is speaking out well.

I mean, I don’t want the government deciding what you can and what you can’t eat. I still think that’s your choice. But I think Mrs. Obama being out there encouraging people in a positive way to eat well and to exercise and to be healthy, I don’t have a problem with that.

That was before he decided that he needed to suck up to the nutsery in his run for president.  Now he thinks Ms. Obama’s campaign is the road to tyranny.

“Doesn’t the president of the United States have anything better to do than to worry about what you are having for lunch? Let me tell you this, I don’t care,” Christie said Monday when 11-year-old Jacob Royal, who traveled from Nebraska to hear Christie speak, asked the New Jersey governor what he would do to make the lunches better.

Christie said Michelle Obama has “no business” trying to determine what kids should be eating at school.

“If she wants to give her opinions about what people should have for breakfast or lunch or dinner, she is like any other American, she can give her opinion. But using the government to mandate her point of view on what people should be eating everyday is none of her business,” Christie said.

“I think that this intervention into our school system is just another example of how the Obamas believe that they’ve got a better answer for everything than you do,” he added.

Setting aside any snark about someone like Mr. Christie rejecting advice on healthy eating — that’s a cheap shot and there are many other reasons he shouldn’t be president — it’s just a pattern for him to switch positions 180 degrees to suit him in order to pander for votes, and he’s really not very good at it.

There is another aspect to this.  For a lot of children, especially those who live in poverty, the meals they get at school are often the only complete meals they get.  It’s not because their parents don’t care about feeding their children, but they cannot afford to feed them well.  Junk food is cheap and notably unhealthy, but it’s sometimes the only thing available.  It leads to unhealthy consumption of excess salt, sugar and fat that lead to diseases and chronic health conditions that could burden the child — and the health system — for the rest of their life.

Providing healthy foods, often for free or at reduced cost thanks to Title I, is a good thing.  And so are healthy children.

HT to Crooks and Liars.