By: J. Justin Wilson
Newspaper: USA Today
Eric Mar’s defense of his Happy Meal ban fails to draw a direct link between toys and children’s weight. That’s because no such link exists. There’s no convincing evidence that the meals themselves cause childhood obesity. A 2007 study in the journal Obesity failed to find a significant association between fast-food restaurant density and obesity.
And a 2004 study by Harvard doctors in the International Journal of Obesity failed to find that “junk food” causes childhood obesity. For someone to propose that banning toys — a step removed from food — will reduce obesity is a huge leap in logic.
It’s ultimately up to parents to buy things and refuse kids’ nagging. (That’s what kids do, after all.) Self-anointed surrogate parents should stay out of everyday family decisions that are not theirs to make.