Happy Meals to become Unhappy Meals in Santa Clara County, CA
Via the LAT:
Happy Meal toys and other promotions that come with high-calorie children’s meals will soon be banned in parts of Santa Clara County unless the restaurants meet nutritional guidelines approved Tuesday by the county Board of Supervisors.
“This ordinance prevents restaurants from preying on children’s’ love of toys” to sell high-calorie, unhealthful food, said Supervisor Ken Yeager, who sponsored the measure. “This ordinance breaks the link between unhealthy food and prizes.”
The board, whose jurisdiction extends only to the unincorporated parts of the county, including much of Silicon Valley, voted 3 to 2 in favor of the ban after a contentious meeting that included more than an hour of testimony on both sides.
Dr. Dan Delgado, director of a county program that targets childhood obesity, said the toys are a powerful lure for children, encouraging them to eat unhealthy food, which then helps cause obesity.
Delgado told the supervisors that parents who come into his clinic say they often buy Happy Meals and other fast food for their children because of the toys that are included. Delgado said that the obese children coming into his clinic include a 5-year-old with Type-2 diabetes.
Um – what are the key words in Delgado’s testimony? “Parents buy.” Need I say more?
But Steve Peat, who owns seven McDonald’s franchises in Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties, said he and his wife work hard to promote healthy lifestyles for children through their restaurants. Peat said that they have donated funds for children’s sports and other activities, and recently won an award for community service from the McDonald’s Corp.
The toys won’t disappear right away.
As a compromise to win majority support, the five-member board agreed to put off implementing the measure for 90 days, to give the fast-food industry time to come up with a voluntary program for improving the nutritional value of children’s meals.
As I wrote last night, instead of the ban why not offer tax break incentives for the eating establishments that voluntarily come up with “healthy alternatives” to traditional kids meals? Oh hell – why do I even bother? Liberal politicos – and their enablers and supporters in the MSM – rarely ever say or do anything that makes a lick of sense anymore.
And guess what California city is next on the list to target the evil Happy Meal toys? Why, of course it’s San Francisco. Considering their other pressing issues, like their recycling of dog poo and their war on plastic bags, did you really expect them to be left behind on this “issue”?
(Photo hat tip: Eat, Drink, and Be)