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Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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Old 04-15-2008, 05:49 PM   #46
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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Wow I thought I changed that! LOL! Touche! That was funny!
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Old 04-15-2008, 05:54 PM   #47
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

Quake, I feel ya. I'm pushing 280lbs right now. In high school, I was all district first team football and played soccer almost all my life. I ran 4 miles a day, even on days that I had practice and I never dropped seemed to drop much below 200 lbs (I'm 6' 1"). I didn't lift enough to really get cut or ripped or anything, but I was always very strong (even as a skinny ass kid).

People are astounded when I tell them I weigh almost 300 lbs. My doctor tells me I'm as healthy or more so than most of her patients, but my good cholesterol is low, so I need to exercise. I started eating healthy a few months ago, and started running every day two weeks ago to see where that takes me.
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Old 04-15-2008, 06:07 PM   #48
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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And the other piece we're not considering, time. For many poor folks, they need to work overtime, and sometimes two jobs, to support the young'ns. That's just to have enough money to house them, clothe them, and feed them SOMETHING. They're not left with scads of time to spend in the kitchen preparing healthy meals.

A single person who makes $40K a year has enough money and all the time they need to cook and eat healthy. But the poor are much worse off. It's not as simple as making blanket statements that everyone can do it. Until you walk a mile in their shoes, you can't tell what it feels like to stroll in after a 16 hour shift and be asked to cook a nutritious meal for less than $3 per person.
Very good points here Schneed. Didn't really consider those. I certainly wasn't trying to preach, but at the same time my girlfriend and I both make decent money and we don't have kids, so taking time to shop for healthy food isn't difficult for us.

Although people who are too poor to grocery shop can qualify for food stamps. It annoys me when I see people paying for food at the grocery store with their food stamp cards, and the conveyor belt is full of awful stuff. And it happens all the time.

But in all honesty I would say the majority of obese people could eat properly if they wanted to. I mean really- what percentage of the population is poor, works two jobs, has no food stamp money and/or time to get to the grocery store, AND is obese or has obese children?

There are so many little things you can do to cut fat and calories. Even most fast food places have healthier choices. Like getting a baked potato or broccoli at Wendy's for your side item instead of fries. I know Subway has raisins and apple slices you can get instead of chips with their combo meals. Just a few examples.

As far as whole grains, skim milk, low fat cheese, etc etc etc- they may be more expensive than their whole milk, white bread counterparts, but not by much. A few cents here and there.

Although I don't think this is going to help matters: Food Costs Rising Fastest in 17 Years: Financial News - Yahoo! Finance
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Old 04-15-2008, 06:13 PM   #49
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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You guys may take this as ignorant, and perhaps it is, but i've always wondered that if all of the above cited reasons for obesity were so prevalent, why is it that we don't see all of these 300 lb behemoth's in third world countries? Say what you want, how you want it, but the simple truth is that you CANNOT be overweight if you are not consuming more calories than you are burning. Period.

Now I'm not a doctor, don't even play one on tv, but it's simple common sense. I do not doubt the validity of each and every one of those medical conditions which Schneed mentions, but I believe the VAST majority of the grossly overweight children you see are a product of lazy lifestyles and ridiculously unhealthy diets. These terribly unfit parents who allow, or God forbid ENCOURAGE this lifestyle in their children, are the first to come up with excuse after excuse mostly involving false claims pertaining to the aforementioned conditions. In these cases, I see no issue with prosecuting those who, after receiving education and subsequent monitoring, continue endangering the health of their children.
EXACTLY. American parents are happy to let their kids sit in front of their PS3's and XBOX's all friggin day and night, and don't pay enough attention to what they're eating. Give them two scoops of ice cream after their meal and don't bat an eye when they head straight for the TV, CPU, or video games. We're a wealthy nation that spends so much time in front of screens. There is reason other cultures like most of Europe and Japan don't have this problem- better diets, better discipline.
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Old 04-15-2008, 06:28 PM   #50
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

If we are going to punish parents when their kids get fat, why don't we punish parents when their kids underperform in school? I would argue that poor school performance is a bigger threat to kids and society than a poor diet.
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Old 04-15-2008, 08:12 PM   #51
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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If we are going to punish parents when their kids get fat, why don't we punish parents when their kids underperform in school? I would argue that poor school performance is a bigger threat to kids and society than a poor diet.

I agree with you but the argument that people will use is that poor school doesnt kill you (physically that is)
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Old 04-15-2008, 08:21 PM   #52
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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If we are going to punish parents when their kids get fat, why don't we punish parents when their kids underperform in school? I would argue that poor school performance is a bigger threat to kids and society than a poor diet.
I think its a matter of health in general, and the direct threat of death. Many kids are dangerously obese with no control over themselves, and could very well lead to diabetes and heart disease, and ultimately premature death. Pretty hefty price to pay for a lazy parent. I don't know, I guess its just because I've seen first hand a stupid lazy slut of a mother who didn't want a kid completely ruin a little girl's life, without consequence, I feel there should be some kind of recourse.
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Old 04-15-2008, 08:21 PM   #53
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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I agree with you but the argument that people will use is that poor school doesnt kill you (physically that is)
It will increase your odds of becoming poor, engaging in criminal activities, and generally make your life miserable. Honestly, if I as a parent had to choose between having a kid with weight issues or a kid who got Fs in school on a regular basis, I'd choose the former.
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Old 04-15-2008, 08:24 PM   #54
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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I think its a matter of health in general, and the direct threat of death. Many kids are dangerously obese with no control over themselves, and could very well lead to diabetes and heart disease, and ultimately premature death. Pretty hefty price to pay for a lazy parent. I don't know, I guess its just because I've seen first hand a stupid lazy slut of a mother who didn't want a kid completely ruin a little girl's life, without consequence, I feel there should be some kind of recourse.
Understood. But obese kids are not dying left and right. They grow to become obese adults and die early, but well after they have a chance as adults to modify their diet and exercise regimen. Who cares? I think it's pretty scary to think that people believe the government should be allowed to throw people in jail because they let their kids eat too many chicken mcnuggets. Oh how far we have come since 1776.
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Old 04-15-2008, 08:43 PM   #55
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

well let me just ask you this... would you agree that in some cases obesity in children is a form or, or a direct result of neglect? When I look at the definition of criminal neglect I could interpret that as to already include, at the very least, extreme cases of obesity.
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Old 04-15-2008, 09:29 PM   #56
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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well let me just ask you this... would you agree that in some cases obesity in children is a form or, or a direct result of neglect? When I look at the definition of criminal neglect I could interpret that as to already include, at the very least, extreme cases of obesity.
I would certainly agree that allowing a child to become obese can constitute neglect. I also think that parents can neglect children by failing to ensure that they focus on their education. But, I simply do not believe the government should be engaged in dictating how parents should raise their children unless the parenting (or lack thereof) poses an imminent and grave threat to the physical health of a child.
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Old 04-15-2008, 11:48 PM   #57
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

I don't mean to poo on the thread topic in any way cuz there has been an intelligent discussion as a result, but I have to seriously question the premise that the government could do anything. We're a nation of 300+ million spread across an enormous landmass. How will authorities realistically monitor child obesity - not to mention force consequences? Not to change topics but I think an example could make the point clearer. Abortion, despite the conventional wisdom, was common before Roe v. Wade. Hundreds of thousands of women were admitted to hospitals each year for abortions performed in the black market. So the point is that making something illegal doesn't accomplish anything unless the state (meaning government) is going to be invasive enough to monitor and deter. This even has a name: Police State. Most of us never want to live in one.

As to child obesity, maybe we could start by revamping school lunch programs across the country. When I lived in Europe I noticed how much better school lunches are. There's no excuse for feeding crap to kids IMO.
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Old 04-16-2008, 12:10 AM   #58
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

SGG -- the difference is a child is responsible for his own grades, and the parent is responsible for feeding that child.

You guys are pulling out tons of scenarios about the absolute poorest of the poor in this country. Schneed -- how many obese children live off the dollar menu. I'm willing to bet very few, because a double cheeseburger and fries doesn't come close to satisfying their appetite.

Yes, eating healthy can be expensive, but you can eat well for very cheap. Buy some rice, chicken, and cream of mushroom soup, you have a quick and easy dish that will feed 4-5 for roughly 10 bucks. I could pull out 20-30 recipes off the top of my head like that, because I ate them as a child. As I said in either the original or early post, exceptions will be made for those children with some sort of disorder. That's obvious.

I agree with others that education is key, but for parents that don't care, action should be taken. I'm not talking about little Timmy that has to shop in the husky section. I'm talking about 14 year olds weighing 200 lbs. It's more than just health issues, those kids are excluded from many social events, sporting events, typically have extremely low self-esteem, and it's the parents fault.

I know plenty of people that are either currently quite poor or were at one time poor with children. A man I used to work with would tell me how he would go for four days without eating to make sure his kids and wife had a meal. He told me people in his same situation would hit up McDonalds, but he saved money by going to the grocery store and keeping the price down.

Yes, fresh fruits and veggies will run high, but you can get bags of frozen vegetables which may not be quite as good but are certainly better than McDonalds for .99 cents a bag. Your argument that people are too poor to spend the money laid out above for food or too busy is a poor one. That makes me favor population control in this country. If you can't take the time to feed your children, then you don't deserve to have them.
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Old 04-16-2008, 12:47 AM   #59
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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Originally Posted by The Goat View Post
I don't mean to poo on the thread topic in any way cuz there has been an intelligent discussion as a result, but I have to seriously question the premise that the government could do anything. We're a nation of 300+ million spread across an enormous landmass. How will authorities realistically monitor child obesity - not to mention force consequences? Not to change topics but I think an example could make the point clearer. Abortion, despite the conventional wisdom, was common before Roe v. Wade. Hundreds of thousands of women were admitted to hospitals each year for abortions performed in the black market. So the point is that making something illegal doesn't accomplish anything unless the state (meaning government) is going to be invasive enough to monitor and deter. This even has a name: Police State. Most of us never want to live in one.

As to child obesity, maybe we could start by revamping school lunch programs across the country. When I lived in Europe I noticed how much better school lunches are. There's no excuse for feeding crap to kids IMO.
Good points.
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Old 04-16-2008, 09:32 AM   #60
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Re: Childhood Obesity -- Should it be a crime?

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SGG -- the difference is a child is responsible for his own grades, and the parent is responsible for feeding that child.

You guys are pulling out tons of scenarios about the absolute poorest of the poor in this country. Schneed -- how many obese children live off the dollar menu. I'm willing to bet very few, because a double cheeseburger and fries doesn't come close to satisfying their appetite.

Yes, eating healthy can be expensive, but you can eat well for very cheap. Buy some rice, chicken, and cream of mushroom soup, you have a quick and easy dish that will feed 4-5 for roughly 10 bucks. I could pull out 20-30 recipes off the top of my head like that, because I ate them as a child. As I said in either the original or early post, exceptions will be made for those children with some sort of disorder. That's obvious.

I agree with others that education is key, but for parents that don't care, action should be taken. I'm not talking about little Timmy that has to shop in the husky section. I'm talking about 14 year olds weighing 200 lbs. It's more than just health issues, those kids are excluded from many social events, sporting events, typically have extremely low self-esteem, and it's the parents fault.

I know plenty of people that are either currently quite poor or were at one time poor with children. A man I used to work with would tell me how he would go for four days without eating to make sure his kids and wife had a meal. He told me people in his same situation would hit up McDonalds, but he saved money by going to the grocery store and keeping the price down.

Yes, fresh fruits and veggies will run high, but you can get bags of frozen vegetables which may not be quite as good but are certainly better than McDonalds for .99 cents a bag. Your argument that people are too poor to spend the money laid out above for food or too busy is a poor one. That makes me favor population control in this country. If you can't take the time to feed your children, then you don't deserve to have them.
I do agree that a child is resonsible for their grades but if the parents do not give them structure and make sure they are doing their home work most kids will not do what they are suppose to do. That is the biggest problem with the school system today is that to many parents don't care. A good example is that my oldest daughter while living with her mother (not my choice our worthless couts decision after she had lived with me for 6 years) grades dropped while living with her mother. After her mother decided that raising a child was not that much fun my daughter moved back in with my wife and I. It took about 6 months to break her of some bad habits and lack of caring and she went from just getting by to making A's & B's. She is now in college and doing very well. If she had stayed with her mother there's a very good chance she would have never gone to college and not cared about her grades.
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