Union Public Policy Class

Solving the World's Problems One Bulldog at a Time

Tonight… We Are Hungry, Mr. Obama

I found an article this week about how the Obama administration went toe to toe against some school children – and lost. These kids from a Kansas high school made this parody video in response to the Obama administration’s changes to the National School Lunch Program. The changes cut portion sizes, regulated fat and salt content, and created difficulty for school lunch staff in designing meals for students. One school lunch lady said in the article that she had to stop serving her own students peanut butter and jelly sandwiches some days because the bread put her over the federal government’s grain limit. It also said under the original rules, which went into effect at the beginning of the school year, schools couldn’t serve spaghetti and meatballs with garlic bread because it includes too many grains. A grilled chicken sandwich with a side order of celery sticks and a bit of peanut butter for dipping was also forbidden because it made for too many servings of protein. The federal grain limit? Too much protein? Really?

However, I’m torn on this issue. I know America is facing a growing problem with adolescent obesity, and the new school lunch regulations required calorie limits and servings of vegetables that students may not get otherwise. On the other hand, sometimes a school lunch is all a child gets and those children need more calories to sustain them past the bus ride home. Also, as the video suggests, many students participate in after school activities, such as sports teams. In order to play their best, they need more calories during the day than some of their peers.

I just thought this video was an awesome way to gain national attention, and I’m proud of the students for making enough of an impression to get the USDA to relax on some of their school lunch requirements.

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One thought on “Tonight… We Are Hungry, Mr. Obama

  1. luketrammell on said:

    I’m all for fighting childhood and adolescent obesity and I realize that students need to have a healthy lunch, but it is equally as important that it is balanced and has enough calories to sustain them as you have noted. Kudos to those students for taking the initiative and getting things done. The government has trouble saying no to kids, especially when their points are as valid as this, and they did a great job of playing on that fact.

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