Monday, November 15, 2010

San Francisco's Mayor Newsom - devious or just plain dumb?

What am I talking about?

Well a couple of weeks ago San Francisco's Board of Supervisors voted 8-3 to restrict the sale of toys along with fast food to those meals that met certain nutritional criteria.

What didn't the Board do?

The Board did not vote to ban the sale of Happy Meals or any other food. Regardless of the Board's decision, McDonald's can continue to sell Happy Meals and parents can sadly continue to buy them, only now if parents also want to buy their children toys, they'll likely have to buy them in a toy store rather than in a fast food restaurant.

Yet on Saturday San Francisco's Mayor Gavin Newsom, during the press conference he called to announce his veto of the Board's vote, supported his decision by stating,

"Parents, not politicians, should decide what their children eat, especially when it comes to spending their own money".
But as I mentioned, the Board's proposed ban has nothing to do with what a parent decides to feed their child, it has to do with McDonald's predatory practice of enticing children with the glitter of toys to nag their parents to take them there.

So is Mayor Newsom cognitively challenged or is he purposely trying to mislead the public and knowingly helping perpetuate one of the most common Big Food demonizing positions - that somehow politicians who care about nutrition are trying to usurp your personal liberties rather than simply trying to protect children and empower parents?

Either way, shame on you Mayor Newsom.

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  1. Most people who are arguing against this ban are a little cognitively challenged, or at least moderately illiterate. I suspect it's rather a brilliant marketing tactic from McDonald's - to get people to cry out that the government can't tell us what to eat and make this whole thing about governments overreaching their powers.

    I can't tell you how many times I've heard parents ask 'but how can you not feed your daughter happy meals? doesn't she demand the toys?' They are always surprised when I say no. And even more surprised when I suggest that if their child so desperately wants the cheap plastic toy that they go in and buy the toy on its own, without the meal that comes with it.

    It's to bad the Mayor has caved in this way. But with a veto-proof majority, can he actually do that?

  2. Seems to me he's caving to the big sack of money McD's left on his doorstep.

  3. Mayor Newsdum for sure. Excuse me Mr. Mayor, but they are still selling the Happy Meals...what are you going on about?

  4. Mavis1:58 pm

    I sent him an email today.

    I am saddened and shocked that Gavin Newsom would veto his board to allow Mcd's to give free toys with their death food. The State of California is overwhelmed with obesity and its billion dollar price tag. There is no question that toys with junk food is predatory and so long as Gavin Newsom puts money above intellegent policy, he will continue to disgrace us. The very dumb reference "parents decide what their children eat", is riduclous. The toys are not edible are they? Parents are influenced by policy and it is the responsibility of Governors to provide leadership and prevent harm on the public. Shame on Gavin Newsom and his fat backing buddies at McD's.

  5. Anonymous12:38 pm

    Man. Rachel Assuncao. Just awesome. you got "cognitavely challenged" and "moderately illiterate" all into just one sentence. If only we were all as cognitavely superior and well read as you. Thanks for saving us from diabetes. Oh, and when you graduate from chico state, feel free not to ask me for a job. I will not be running the poitburo. But you will be a useful idiot for someone. Good luck jerk.

  6. Sarah9:36 am

    I don't think that he is either. I think that McDonald's has the right to sell Happy Meals with toys just as the consumer has the right to purchase the Happy meal with toys. It is the responsibility of the consumer to determine the consequences of his/her purchase of the Happy Meal (calorically, financially, etc). I believe that obesity is a huge problem in Western countries but I believe that education is more important than laws determing what a company can/can't produce. Nutrional information is available in all McDonald's. I never eat fast food due to my parents having the gall to actually say NO to my whining siblings and myself whenever we begged for Happy Meals. I normally agree with most of your posts but I don't not think this is the responsibility of the government.

    PS Rachel I'm neither cognitively challenged or moderately illiterate. I'm a young college graduate working a professional job who just happens to have a different opinion than you.