Our governor is back in Iowa and has apparently found a new cause celebre: Bad nutritional health!
Fielding a question from an 11-year-old who claimed school lunches were better under Bush then under Obama (never mind that the student would have been at most 4 years old when Bush still held office), Christie said that First Lady Michelle Obama, with her Let’s Move! initiative, had “no business” dictating health standards in our schools.
The question remains, if elected President of Student Council, will Chris Christie put soda machines back in the cafeteria? This quote might give some insight:
“If [First Lady Michelle Obama] 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.”
Oh? We shouldn’t use the government to set public health policy and urge preventive health practices for a generation plagued with obesity, thus reducing increasingly burdensome strains on not only our bodies but also our health care providers and delivery systems? After all, one in three American kids is now obese or overweight with studies showing that more than half the adult population would be dangerously overweight by 2030, leading to millions of cases of diabetes, stroke and heart disease.
We already know Christie’s contempt for public education (and never mind that districts can opt out of the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act) but certainly creating a public school cafeteria environment that provides healthy food options is the socially and fiscally responsible thing to do. Right?
That would mean Christie is fiscally responsible, which he’s not.
While Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative is the bane du jour of junk food advocates, and while there has emerged a widely disputed narrative that food waste is on the rise because of an increase in icky, healthy food, (even though the rise in food waste is more likely attributed to truncated lunch periods), we should instead be focusing on the many other factors—Aramark, Sodexo, Tyson and Pilgrim’s—that turn apples into apple strudel and chicken into fried chicken nuggets.
Chris Christie’s pandering to the school lunch crowd could be viewed as a politicly savvy move into school lunch politics, but he instead just comes off sounding like a petulant child.