The People’s Republic of San Francisco Bans Happy Meals

San Francisco hates McDonalds. The Board of Supervisors would ban them from the city if they had the guts. Instead the city’s “leaderthings” cower behind radical, senseless rules and regulations – just for the community good, whether the community wants them or not.

Did you know that San Francisco has a regulation limiting McDonalds to just 7 restaurants inside the city limits? In every other city in the nation the number of McDonalds is directly related to the amount of business that is available to support the stores. If they aren’t prospering, or there isn’t an available market then the company won’t build more stores or restaurants. If there is more demand – they will answer it. Except in San Francisco where the Board of Supervisors, mired under an exhausting far left political agenda, know what’s best for their residents.

So it is no surprise that the benevolent city’s self-appointed protectors of the lame, the poor and the obviously stupid, took matters into their own hands to protect the children from the horrors of McDonalds’ Happy Meals – and especially the toy inside that is used to entice children to eat poison. Specifically, the Board of Supervisors imposed nutritional guidelines for children’s meals that all restaurants in the city will have to follow – if they want to put a toy inside. It was obvious who the main target was – McDonalds. The rule sets limits on the amount of calories, fat, salt and sugar as well as requires meals to have servings of vegetables and fruit. Obesity is the “disease” of the day from which we must save the children. And, say the food police – the toy inside the bag is an inducement to hook the children on unhealthy foods. In their eyes, McDonalds is nothing more than a food junky pusher. The horror of it all.

The reality is that there is no danger from the toy – a treat for your child – an adventure like when we used to get a toy inside our Cracker Jacks boxes. It’s no different than when we used to fill out a form posted on the back of the cereal box to get a toy from the mysterious place called Battle Creek, Michigan. The practice goes back beyond the Little Orphan Annie decoder rings. They are children looking to have fun and adventure. And the food police seem to hate that fact. To them, kids are simply pawns to be used to enforce their political agenda.

The extreme arguments made against the toy in the Happy Meal are almost hysterical. Leslie Samuelrich, chief of staff for one of the leading food police think tanks, Corporate Accountability International (CAI), is in a panic over why more people aren’t crusading against fast food restaurants. Said Samuelrich, “If the product were a gun or drugs or even a poorly designed toy that could injure a child, the corporation responsible for making it and then marketing it to the most vulnerable among us would be on the hook.” She apparently thinks cheeseburgers are akin to assault rifles. The CAI has even called Ronald McDonald a “duplicitous clown.”

Facts in the matter show that there is no credible research linking toys in kid’s meals to childhood obesity. None. Moreover, the assault of McDonalds ignores the fact that the restaurant has indeed made an attempt to give parents a choice of nutrition in Happy Meals. Danya Proud, McDonald’s USA spokeswoman said, “Any fair and objective review of our menu and the actions we’ve taken will demonstrate we’ve added multiple options for parents to choose. That includes Apple Dippers (bagged, sliced, pre-pealed apples, low-fat 1% milk, 100% apple juice and Chicken McNuggets made with white meat.”

Of course anyone silly enough to believe in freedom of choice or parental decisions miss the point. This is about government control – not child health. Will childhood obesity rates fall after they ban the toys in Happy Meals? Of course not. But    San Francisco is the incubator for the nanny state. If they can make it law there, it can and will be picked up by the leading nut on your city council. All for the public good, of course. We can suffer quietly – or work to get these idiots out of office. Of course, if you live in San Francisco, there is probably little hope of electing someone who actually understands the proper role of government. Perhaps you had just better move and leave that asylum to the inmates.

Tom DeWeese
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Tom DeWeese is one of the nation’s leading advocates of individual liberty, free enterprise, private property rights, personal privacy, back-to-basics education and American sovereignty and independence.