Past Opinion Articles
Article for the week of 5/31/05
Be healthy and focus on the real problems
Why we shouldnít care about vending machines in schools.
By, Paul Mann (Editor and Weirdo)
Grab your pitch forks folks, storm the capitol buildings, and raise your
voices because our kids canít gain unnecessary weight in school anymore!
I tell ya if my kids donít weigh 400 pounds by the time they are in college
weíve failed! Hell no, Doritos, youíve still got mouths to stuff. Screw
getting our legislators to improve the important things, like education
itself. If we canít have access to coca cola 24-7, nothing else matters.
Itís amazing how riled we can get when something as pathetic as vending
machine access comes to the forefront, yet when the actual learning process
sits on stage, the voices suddenly lose the energy. A nutrition bill recently
passed in Connecticut that will ban many soft drinks and junk foods from
schools within the state. I understand the feeling that parents need to
decide what their children should eat, but once they leave home, mom and
dad arenít guiding their lives.
A majority of kids would actually benefit, because they attend to learn,
not gorge. Besides, I doubt George Lucas will be looking for several million
Jabba the Hutt stunt doubles any time soon. Iím more concerned about being
prepared for the real world. Why fret about lack of vending opportunities
when activities inside of the classroom mold future citizens?
One benefit deals with the fact that kids in these schools will finally
be in a place separated from the garbage foods. In our hefty society we
can gain access to any number of calories anywhere. With fast food restaurants,
gas stations, super markets and the household children gain exposure more
often than not. Will we really be harming our children by removing the
Iím not advocating a world wide ban on junk foods, better to attempt moderation
instead of extreme. I enjoy occasional treats myself, one soda a day and
maybe dessert. Sure, parents should be able to teach their kids proper
eating habits, yet with all the things they could do for a Klondike bar
the odds seem slightly uneven.
I believe the Lawmakers of Connecticut mean well and care more about proper
health even if it means cutting off a few greedy companies. Dr. Pepper
may make the world taste better, but it can take care of flavor outside
knowledge avenues. If the school boards wonít act, someone needs to take
Many people may question the right to control what a young person eats
while undergoing primary education. Last time I checked, schools werenít
a form of democracy. Of course students will not be closed off and they
will be able to express themselves, but order will prevail.
Certain rules and regulations exist to make sure the learning process
proceeds uninhibited. Growing up, if I didnít like one of the present
rules it was tough nuggets. Students can learn a dayís lesson just as
well with or without coin operated machines.
Furthermore, there are a lot more pressing issues parents need to worry
about when young minds enter a learning institution. Schools around the
country constantly battle with curriculum choices, standardized testing
and teacher highering practices. I hate to think that snack and soda privileges
hold more weight than students passing or who teaches them.
Will we only care about what students fail to learn during election years?
Letís pay a little attention to bringing strength to subjects that often
lose support. Whether little Billy had enough M&Ms will not play a
factor when he becomes an adult. Fight to enforce foreign language, music,
art and history. Push for the mind, not the gut.
When children attend school parents reserve the right to be concerned
about many things, but junk food access should not be one of them. Children
can prosper without vending machines because there is ample opportunity
elsewhere and there are more important issues at hand. Instead of griping
about who should tell who to eat what, be healthy and focus on the real