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Who Knows Best

by Ronald A. Rowe | May 12th, 2011 | Elementary

It started in Chicago under the pretense of protecting children. Who doesn’t want our children to be protected? The only problem is, the school district wants to protect your children from… your cooking.

Several schools – public, taxpayer funded schools – have implemented a policy banning bag lunches. Apparently you are not to be trusted to provide your child with a nutritionally sound lunch. If left to your own devices, the school board reasons, you will send your child to school with an extra-caffeinated cola, two pounds of sugar, a lump of dry poison, and a vial of crack. Only the school district, known for decades for serving SOS and other nigh-inedible swill, is wise enough to determine what foods are right for your child.

This is a bad thing for Chicago. It is a terrible precedent for the rest of the country. If this succeeds in Chicago, other cities will follow. We, as parents, simply cannot abdicate our responsibilities to the government. The school system exists to supplement our guidance to our children, not to override it.

Even if a giant corporation could mass produce processed meals to be reconstituted, reheated, and served by minimum wage employees on plastic trays that are better for my son than my wife’s hand-made meals, I would still resist the notion that we can be forced to accept the school’s standards over our own. Not to go all Constitutionalist on you, but the Federal government has no business telling us that we cannot feed our own children as we see fit.

This is the start of a slippery slope that, if left unchecked, will not end well.

This would be an unreasonable intrusion even if it were really a misguided effort to preserve the health and safety of our children, which it isn’t. Behind the thin façade of serving the public good is the obvious fact that forcing you to shell out your hard-earned dollars for school lunches instead of packing your own funnels money to the Chicago school district’s sole provider of meals. Not that anyone would ever accuse the school board in the most notoriously corrupt city in the country of taking kick-backs in exchange for sending extra business their way, right?

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