Monday, October 22, 2007

Gesture politics for Fatties

The papers this mornig seem to be awash with the news that the Government is going to send "warning letters" to parents of fat kids telling them that their fat kids are fat. This seems to me to be yet another of those "something must be done, this is something, therefore we must do it" type policies. Think about this for a moment, if you've got a fat kid the chances are they;ve got fat parents. Sending a letter to fat parents telling them that their kid is fat is probably not going to make a blind bit of difference.

The other day I was sitting on the bus in front a woman that was immense in size. She stuffed her face with the two bags of crisps then a bag of fizzy sweets, and then, hilarious, took about a bottle of Diet Coke. She was with her children, who were equally porky. Does anyone seriously think a letter from the school telling her the kids are fat will make her stop and think, "oh I must stop trying to stretch my shopping budget by buying the cheapest food from the supermarket and start going organic"?

13 comments:

JuliaM said...

"Sending a letter to fat parents telling them that their kid is fat is probably not going to make a blind bit of difference."

Given the rising levels of adult illiteracy (thanks, comprehensive school system!), they probably won't be able to read it anyway....

Anonymous said...

Was "shipping budget" a typo or a reference to the amount of food these people consume?

dizzy said...

oops

Old BE said...

I agree with your post Dizzy but I must take issue with the idea that unhealthy food is sometimes the only option on cost grounds. Sensible parents can feed their kids cheaply AND healthily. It's not a wealth thing it's a responsibility thing.

Mulligan said...

1) Government sends letter to parent telling them their kid is fat.

2) Parent sues government for stress caused to fat kid in being labelled (er) fat.

3) European Court of Justice Fines Government for causing stress to parent and fat kid.

4) Fat parent and fat kid get thousands on pounds to spend on daily super whopper meals (gherkin, tomato and onion ring counting as 3 of the daily 5 portions even when thrown away (double portion of fries makes 5)), plus extra large diet drinks. [ Scold themselves on lava hot apple pie but that's another story. ]

5) Taxpayer has to foot the bill.

And so it goes......

Mostly Ordinary said...

Since when have teachers been doctors? Are they going to weigh these kids and work out their BMI?

Health matters are for doctors I would have thought. That said the tendency to use schools to try and program ethics into kids marches on, I'm still waiting for someone to tell me the point of 'citizenship classes' which suffer from the same weakness you've pointed out - teaching civility to child brought up by the uncivilised is a pretty hard job.

Anonymous said...

Where are all the size 6 politicians then?

Anonymous said...

My wife and I were discussing this as it was on the radio,went past a kids playground which was empty but hanging off a tree by a couple of ropes were gang of kids, further along kids playing football so that blew out the fat kids topic for us as all the kids looked fit and happy.

Anonymous said...

Fat kids have fat parents; they already know their kids are fat and they also know why. What exactly is a letter home going to achieve? This travesty of a Government can pat them selves on the back and proclaim it’s ‘doing its bit’ and some deluded twits will believe them.

Here’s a novel approach, instead of sending the welfare Giro directly to the bank, why not attached it to the back of a milk float and let the tubbies chase after it.

Madasafish said...

Personally I think the Government should let Darwin's laws work naturally.

Mountjoy said...

It's a good thing John Prescott is not in charge of the DFCS (Department for Fat Children and Schools) ...

By the way, have they banned fat MPs from being Ministers etc? Just a thought.

Shug Niggurath said...

I think the point is being missed by most people here and all over the place.

It might well be true that fat begets fatter, it might equally be true that parents who want to see the monarchy up against the wall and shot begets the same. But are the government entitled to interfere in this manner, and with the tacit approval of the skinny populace?

Why is it that this government's approach to everything is to threaten when they haven't managed to actually fulfill pretty much ANY of their election pledges of the last ten years?

Here's a novel approach, , get your nose out the trough and DO the f**kin jobs you were elected to do and stay the f*** out of the minutae of our lives.

Anonymous said...

Frankly, I do enjoy the notion of Darwin's Law and endorse it with gusto, but, you see, you have the NHS, which gives the government a free pass to interfere in any are of your lives under the guise of being "prudent keepers of the public purse".

You can't have both.

You can have freedom, meaning blow the NHS out of the water, or,if you insist that you want a "health service" that is "the envy of the world", you can have nannyesque warnings from people you would not allow over your threshhold.

You cannot have both.