McDonald’s cops to their role in raising are children
It’s funny how a couple of hours can changes one’s perspective.
On Friday night as I headed off to work, the Canadian medal count was still, zero and the prospects of presenting an article of this tone were daunting to say the very least. Just twelve hours later, a silver, a bronze and thanks to Canadian 48kg wrestler Carol Huynh an elusive first gold for Canada, the proverbial crack had opened in the door and I proceed to hunch toward the crack for a closer look and an attempt to jam my size 12' in between the door and the frame in an effort to prevent future closures.
My dilemma, prior to the accomplishments of Canadian athletes over the weekend was this . . . How could I openly and knowingly criticize an Olympic advertising strong hold like the golden arches of McDonald’s, for their insensitive promotion of childhood obesity, when my home country had yet to capture so much as one podium finish. I would be chastened "sour grapes" "soar loser" or even worse an "issue deflector."
Alas, Canada has her medal and I my vengeance.
Have you seen this years McDonald’s Olympic commercial?
The commercials seem harmless. Five children sit at a McDonald’s restaurant exchanging jokes and enjoying their meals. The boys in the commercials are often the butt of some fairly lame jokes but this is not what offends me. I’m not even offended by the McDonald’s corporations apparent monopoly on Olympic advertising dollars. My concern is for the kid’s.
North-America has finally come to terms with the overwhelming epidemic of childhood obesity. We no longer take the stance of enablers, deny, deny, deny, instead we opt for understanding and improvement. Soda machines have been banned from school hallways, trans-fats reduced at all fast food chains, healthy menu choices have become en-vouge yet McDonald’s latest commercial offering features a gang of "kids" eating adult size meals.
That’s no happy meal, it’s a 540 calorie, sodium laden Big Mac from the big boy’s menu that spiked an interesting revolt, that I happened to witness last Tuesday well attending my local Arches.
Some poor Super-Mom dragging three "rugrats" that appeared to be her own and a least two more that possibly followed her into the McDonald’s under the guise of procuring food for their clan had just pulled in behind me. The "lunch" line was moving at a staggering rate, ever the gentleman I offered Super-Mom my spot in line, she gladly accepted and chaos ensued.
"But in the commercials..." "those kids are younger then me" "how come in the commercial..." "But I want a Big Mac, too" "We all want Big Mac’s" and "I want a large soda"
The children were rabid, a line had been drawn in the sand, sides were chosen, the revolt was now.
It’s a scene I’m sure all too familiar to most parents and sure to be repeated until McDonald’s cops to their role in raising are children. Yeah that right I said it, McDonald’s should take some responsibility when it comes to rasing the nations youth. McDonald’s spent $314.9 million on advertising in just the first six months of 1999 and a ten-year eclipse powered by the advent of on-line advertising has only seen those figures doubled and redouble and who does McDonald’s advertise too? That’s right, the kids.
The United States census bureau reported that there were 71 million youth (those under the age of 18) living in the United States at the end of 1998 divide that number by the $314.9 million McDonald’s invested in advertising for the first six-months of 1999 and you find that McDonald’s has a little more than 4 million in advertising dollars invested in each and every child in America. If a $4 million dollar investment over a six-month period doesn’t buy one a role in a child’s development then on Monday morning bright and early, I’m heading to the local child welfare office and suspending my child support payments, effective immediately.
I will not be fooled, your ridiculous attempt to blind me with politically correct commercials has certainly dulled my senses, however I will forever be a staunch critic of your role when it comes to the raising of our children.