Today is a day that only comes once a year. No, not the day retailers forget Halloween and Thanksgiving and put out their Christmas decorations even earlier than last year. Today is Food Day. And by “once a year” we mean that it died out in the 1970s until being ceremoniously resurrected.
What is Food Day? Well, it’s not a celebration of food you (probably) like. It’s a campaign of the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI)—a group with “warmed-over Marxist grievances against private enterprise” that disparages just about anything tasty—which means that the “food” being celebrated is probably steamed organic spinach.
Of course, even the well-heeled CSPI couldn’t pull a stunt like this on its own. So, they have partners. They have partnering organizations such as the Humane Society of the United States, which wants to make the meat, dairy and eggs on your plate more expensive. The Food Day advisory board also contains a member of the vegan activist “Physicians Committee” for Responsible Medicine and Kelly Brownell, director of Yale University’s soda-tax-loving Rudd Center. This nexus of fringe agendas caused the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to drop out of Food Day.
Food Day echoes CSPI’s latest campaign to ban food advertising to kids, despite the lack of evidence that marketing causes obesity. As our Executive Director writes in a column today:
Second, the very notion that a cartoon character on a cereal box is causing weight gain is ridiculous. Children’s characters have long flacked for candy and other such foods. The characters from the 1940s and 1950s show “Super Circus” sold Snickers and Three Musketeers. Howdy Doody and Mr. Bluster promoted Twinkies and Tootsie Roll pops. Cowboy actor Roy Rogers promoted “candy-coated” Sugar Crisp cereal.
But in those days, regardless of all the icons promoting candy and sugary cereal, kids were rather slim. It was far before obesity rates started to rise—something that probably has much more to do with a general culture of inactivity than with advertising.
We’re not opposed to a celebration of food. We just think that a celebration shouldn’t be a stalking horse for a scolding from the food cops. Rather, we think these thoughts from Jeff Mullin of the News and Eagle are closer to the mark:
Given my age and my family history of heart disease, I really should be out in the woods chewing on pine bark in memory of old Euell [Gibbons, a 1970s health food salesman and advocate]. But what fun would that be?
So on this Food Day, indulge in a guilty culinary pleasure, like a big old chicken fried steak with cream gravy, a greasy burger with fried onions or a big plate of pasta and sauce with a side of garlic bread.
Live a little.
Live a little, indeed. Or celebrate your fond childhood lunchroom memories. It is National Bologna Day, which says more about the credibility of CSPI’s agenda than anything else.