SIMMONS: Leave fitness to families
Let’s see. The economy sucks. If the Democrats have their way the overweight kids we’re concerned about today won’t have a job tomorrow. Oh, stop. I could go on and on. The first lady made two additional points.
“We all know the numbers,” Mrs. Obama said. “I mean, one in three kids are overweight or obese, and we’re spending $150 billion a year treating obesity-related illnesses. So we know this is a problem, and there’s a lot at stake.”
For his part, Mr. Obama did something no other American president has done: He created the first-ever federal task force to combat childhood obesity. (Silly me for wondering whatever happened to the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports.)
Press releases flew into e-mail in-boxes from private companies and nonprofits announcing their eagerness to partner with the Obama administration and its “very ambitious” undertaking.
But holy Fritos and RC Cola. Good government intentions have yet to produce the results the Obamas are seeking.
School breakfast feeding programs, lunch programs and after-school programs. America’s youngsters are getting three free hots (as if they’re jailbirds).
Some children are overweight because they are ill, and some are overweight because they think a healthy meal is adding pineapple or broccoli to pizza. Many a child is overweight because the only things they routinely exercise are their fingers and thumbs.
Whatever the reason, the government didn’t create the problem and it’s not the government’s to solve.
It’s a family thing.
Children who are able need to rip and run outdoors. Just ask any parent in the Mid-Atlantic region who has been snowbound indoors with youths.
• Deborah Simmons can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org