Zero Plus 330
Fat, Juicy, Mouth-Watering Terrorists--Stalking Your Kids--
Are Under Attack!!!
Editor, New York City Combat Correspondent News
GROUND ZERO, New York
City, August 8--They steal through the night. Their
eighteen wheelers sneak into towns across America, filled with
Terrorism and life-threatening toxicity aimed at your children, the
weak-willed, the elderly on fixed income.
In the mist of the pre-dawn, they slither
up to the curbs and open their tractor-trailer doors, emptying the
contents of frozen "killer toxins" to be sold to your children who
unsuspectingly gobble up the goodies under the guise of happiness and joy,
only to find out later that what they have eaten will kill them, and their
children's children children.
These are wily, nefarious goals of the Fast
Food Terrorists. That is, if you believe what the legal
profession is promoting.
fast food companies have to pay compensatory damages to an obese man?
Yes. They failed to warn him that certain fast foods can be bad for
No. Whatever happened to personal responsibility?
Riding the heels of success from their
assault on the tobacco industry, attorneys are turning their litigation
howitzers on companies like McDonalds, Burger King, Wendy's, Roy Rogers,
and, without a doubt, will soon attack my most precious and honored Friend
of Fat, Ben & Jerry's.
The War on Fat has been launched.
It's Pearl Harbor and comes in the form of a 5-foot 10-inch, 272 pound man names Caesar
Barber who, after suffering a heart attack from being overweight, didn't
stop stuffing his face with hamburgers from his favorite fast food
restaurant. Last month he launched a major legal attack on the
giants of fast food, filing suit against four of them, claiming they
contributed to his health problems by serving fatty foods.
On July 24, in the Bronx Supreme Court, Barber
filed suit against McDonald's, Wendy's, Kentucky Fried Chicken and Burger
King. The 56-year-old maintenance worker is seeking compensatory
damages he claims are the result of inadequate warnings about the dangers
of eating delicious, fatty, lip-smacking fast food.
food chains failed to disclose the
contents in terms of calories, fat grams and sodium. Even when posted, the
information is not easily understandable to the public,” said his
attorney, Samuel Hirsch.
Barber had heart attacks in 1996 and 1999
and has diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. He
claims he didn't know fast food "wasn't good for you."
In retaliation, Steven Anderson, president
of the National Restaurant Association, said the lawsuit was a "blatant
attempt to capitalize on the recent news stories on the growing rates of
obesity." President Bush, amidst his other wars, has declared
war on obesity, calling on the American public to reduce its consumption
of "fat-producing foods."
Calling the lawsuit "frivolous," defenders of
fast food claim the nutritional elements of their menus posted, by law, in
each establishment, sufficiently warns the consumer.
Barber doesn't agree.
"When they said it was 100 percent beef, I
believed it was good for me," he said.
While finding culpable targets to directly
link one's eating to health disorders is virtually impossible because no
one knows who eats where or what or how often, it seems unlikely Barber
will be successful.
In the Tobacco Wars, it was
relatively easy to link cigarette smoking and lung cancer. There was
one product and one result, but food is pervasive. It exists
everywhere. Perhaps Mr. Barber leaves McDonald's and
goes to the candy store to shove handfuls of rich, creamy chocolate down
his gullet. No one knows for sure. That makes the target
hard to focus on.
At best, the uproar comes down to
"deceptive advertising," or, what some might call "Terroristic
Advertising." That is advertising aimed at kids, luring them with
prizes while "poisoning" their systems. The theory is
similar to the use of Joe Camel, alleged to be a ploy by cigarette king
RJR to attract youthful smokers. "A children-friendly
environment" is considered by anti-fast food advocates as an Osama bin
Laden plot to ultimately cripple America's future with obesity.
I'm not a fast food fan.
But, I am a Ben & Jerry's lush.
Inside every adult is a kid.
And kids love something more than Happy Meals. They love ice
I look at Ben & Jerry's as the
adult version of Barber's suit against fast food. I think Ben
& Jerry's plot to come up with yummy sounding names and even more
tantalizing tastes to lure the "child within the adult body" to the
freezer section, and snatch up a couple of pints when no one is looking,
then run home and lock the door and eat them ravenously--with nary even a
glance at the nutritional label.
Some might say I have been
Terrorized as a child by fast food, and my hunger for Ben & Jerry's is an
extension of seeds planted by Ronald McDonald to kill myself.
Can't say that's true.
I grew up on the "poor side" of
life. We ate greasy food because we couldn't afford the
expensive "healthy food." Pan-fried chewy cheap steak, lots of
potatoes and gravy, still excite my taste buds. I'd rather
gnaw on a cheap piece of meat than have filet mignon melt in my mouth.
But I do have grandchildren.
And they eat at McDonald's occasionally for one reason--to get the prizes
in the Happy Meals. There can be no doubt the fast-food
industry targets kids. Just as there is no question that
alcohol and beer companies target the young to start drinking their brand,
or that J.C. Penny or K-Mart, or any brand seeks to instill confidence and
brand loyalty in future consumers. "I buy Tide because
my Mom bought it," is a simple example of generational brand loyalty.
Which leads me to the key point.
Mr. Barber should sue his
parents, not the fast food industry.
Barber and his
lawyer Samuel Hirsch
Parents are the ones who take
their kids into places where food is cheap, fast, and friendly.
The result of eating that food is their responsibility, not the companies
that sell it.
Under the age of 18, parents have the
duty to supervise their children. They are the gatekeepers of
what a child eats. Nutritional habits are formed as children, not
by the food industry.
Teaching a child to eat a balanced meal
starts at home. A child who grows up being stuffed with fast food
learns how to be "healthy" or "unhealthy" by example, not by advertising.
A Parent Of Vigilance, A Citizen of
Vigilance, a Loved One of Vigilance, protects a child's eating habits by
limiting what he or she consumes. It takes Courage, Conviction
and Right Action to pass by a McDonald's, a Wendy's, a Burger King.
Those who fold to the desire to protect a child are victims of Fear of not
pleasing the child, Intimidation by the child's demands to "eat
non-nutritional foods" if only to get the free(?) toy and usually Complacent about the Vigilance
necessary to protect them from bad eating habits.
Fast food, if anything, should be a
treat not a staple.
What irks me about Mr. Barber's
lawsuit is the continuing blame we, as a society, put on institutions to
be our "parents," our "guardians." That's not their job.
They just reflect our demands, offering foods that appease our tastes, not
necessarily our well-being.
Unfortunately, when the ruckus
clatters across the country, the federal, state or local government steps
in to assume the "PARENT OF VIGILANCE" role by passing laws, or allowing
lawsuits to run their course to set blame on the institutions.
The more these lawsuits are heard,
the more regulations and laws enacted, the more Complacent we become as
parents, as adults, in the management of our destiny. The more we
abdicate our right of choice, the more we expect "others" to look
out after us. Essentially, the weaker and more
Complacent we become in the exercising of our duty to ourselves and
others--always looking for Big Brother to step in and "shield us" from
But that's not what it's all about.
Life isn't about giving up one's freedom of choice by punishing those who
offer it. It's about making choices. It's about taking
A free economy allows consumers to
dictate what it eats. If people chose not to eat a certain
food, the outlets for it will dry up. However, if the
society "wants" those types of foods, the outlets will spawn and grow,
appeasing the palates of the parents who control the money that buys the
products for their children.
And, it is well documented that
obesity breeds obesity. Fat parents usually have fat kids.
Lean parents usually have lean kids. Duhhhh!!!!
So while we all may want to jump on
the bandwagon and shoot arrows at McDonald's, Burger King, Kentucky Fried
and Wendy's, the first arrow should be shot at our parents.
If Mr. Barber really wants to make a
point, he can amend his lawsuit to file a class action suit against all
the parents--mothers, fathers, grandparents--who take their kids to fast
food outlets, or purchase "junk food" for them.
The FBI, CIA and Homeland Security
can simply find out the weight of all parents who fall outside the "lean and
mean" category and into the "obesity group" and start wire tapping their
phones, getting meter readers to "rat on them" after glancing at their
pantry, or calling the TIPS hotline when they see them entering a fast
food establishment with a minor.
Now we're talking Vigilance.
someone who is overweight passes someone who is lean on the streets, we
can all hiss at them.
We can pass laws that one can only buy clothing that fits an appropriate
height and weight ratio, equal to that which the government has dictated.
We can have Fat Cops who carry electronic scales and stop people in their
cars or walking and demand they take an "Obesity Check," much as we do a
sobriety test. If their height and weight isn't within
guidelines, they receive a ticket and must pay a fine. And,
perhaps under go "Fast Food Rehabilitation."
Families which continue to serve up fatty
foods to their children can be reported to Social Welfare; their children
taken from them and put in "Non-fat-food" foster homes.
Corporations which allow any employee to become overweight can be fined,
and, if it is found Vigilance wasn't followed after being warned,
While all the above may sound absurd, it is
no more so than trying to blame those who manufacture and distribute food
to meet people's tastes.
Only when parents become Parents of
Vigilance, dedicated to eliminating Terrorism in their children from the
inside out, will we restore our land to state of readiness, able and
capable of withstanding any threat to our security.
And about that Ben & Jerry's issue.
Hmmmmm. I'm thinking, yes. Maybe that's where Osama bin Laden
is hiding. Up in Vermont. He's maybe at the bottom of a
pint of Heath Bar Crunch (my favorite). After I finish here, I'll
have to look for him. And if he's not there, maybe he's in the
Chubby Hubby. Or the Vanilla Carmel, or the Phish Food.
Yes, I'll keep looking, and if I don't find him, maybe I'll sue my
Go Aug. 7--When The
Heroes Of 9.11 Flee--Who Do We Honor?
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