Recently, the Governor of the State of Michigan made an announcement that, among other things, he’d like to set up some sort of mandatory yearly physicals for ALL the children of Michigan and that the doctors (whether that’s a private pediatrician you/your insurance company paid for or not) would then be required to report the childs weight, BMI, fasting blood sugar number, etc. to a specific agency in the State.  The child would remain anonymous, however, this would be monitored by the same agency in Michigan that keeps tabs on whether or not a child is up to date on their immunizations.  I’m unclear as to what this data would mean to people who are not in any way related to my child….nor am I sure what penalties would be imposed upon any parent whose child might “fail” this little litmus test. Now, to be fair, I didn’t read the whole article or watch the whole speech he gave.  Generally, when our Governor speaks, all I generally hear is “blah, blah, blah……I’m an idiot”.  But I did SKIM the article and have put a link (at the bottom)  if YOU want to read it.

Now, I’m a little scared to admit this……for I think maybe that hell has, in fact, officially frozen over.  I sort of…..kind of….can see where the idiot Governor is going with this.  Childhood obesity, on a national level, is rising at an alarming rate.  Children don’t eat very well in this fast food Nation.  School lunch rooms are stockpiling food, albeit very tasty little morsels, that is positively shit on a styrofoam plate.

I am by no means a health nut or some raving lunatic that force feeds my ideas and theories on the entire world.  I am, however, a mom who is concerned about the absolute inactivity of kids these days and the food that they slug down their gullet, with what appears to be not a single thought for how it will affect them long-term.  This is not to say that my kids have never tasted the sweet delectableness of candy or donuts or ice cream.  We DO eat our fair share of fast food.  I cook, but will be completely honest in the fact that “cooking” is made a lot easier by opening a box or a can.

However, I am, at the very core, minimally conscious of what my kids eat…..how often they eat……AND, most specifically, how active they are daily.   And some parents can’t say the same.  Some parents barely register the 900 calories worth of crap their kids just ingested right in front of them……nor do they notice that Jr. hasn’t left the house to go OUTDOORS and PLAY in almost a year.  I can say this with a fair amount of certainty because I have a scenario such as this that plays out in my own extended family.

I have two nephews….one is 15 and the other is 10.  Both are already borderline morbidly obese.  My mother and father, who cares for and oversees both of these children nearly full time, could give a rats ass less about what they eat.  They, collectively as a group, have appeared to take the “we’ll just ignore it and hope no one notices” approach.  They rarely eat dinner together.  Generally, one nephew will nosh on his stock pile of brownies with a candy coating on top, but if he DOES eat the meal my mother cooked, it will be two or three huge portions worth, followed by glass after glass of Mountain Dew and then he will slink off to digest it all in front of his game of World of Warcraft.  Virtually every friend that he has is online and none of them see daylight (unless they are forced to go to school).

The other eats only a select handful of items DAILY…..Ramen noodle soups….chicken nuggests from a box (or McDonalds)…..Sugary sweet cereal (for breakfast/lunch/dinner/snack)….Chocolate pop tarts….Pizza rolls.  Milk laced with 1/2 a bottle of that chocolate syrup of death.  I may be missing an item or two, but that is basically his essentials.  He almost nearly eats NOTHING else.  And while THESE penis people are busy filling their bodies with, essentially, crap….they NEVER GET ANY SORT OF EXCERCISE to help combat those billions of calories.  Both sit sedentary on the computer or in front of the TV from the moment they’re awake until the moment they go to sleep.

These two nephews, as a general rule, HATE to come over to my house for any extensive period of time.  Because they KNOW what they are in store for…….My son PLAYS outdoors every moment he can squeeze in and won’t give them a moments rest until they grudgingly agree to join him.  When he’s indoors, he’s still running and jumping and playing tag and chase.  He barely watches TV…..its ON most of the time and he’ll run by and glance at it for a moment, and then he’s off and running again.  He positively EXHAUSTS them…….they’ve TOLD me so.  Now, granted, he’s got ADHD and, let me tell you…his energy level kicks my ass most days too.  But I couldn’t be happier that my both of my own penis people are super active kids.  If they sit still for too long (for instance, in places where its socially unacceptable to run around like a raving lunatic), their extremities start to twitch and you can just TELL they want to get moving.

The younger nephew (with the odd food requirements) once needed to stay at our house for a weeks time.  My mom packed him all his necessary foods and brought them to my house.  And while I felt obligated to GIVE them to him, I also made every attempt to encourage him to TRY some of the foods I was making.  He balked at the idea every time.  It was summer and he and my oldest penis person were outdoors nearly every waking hour…..Swimming……riding bikes……jumping on the trampoline…..going to the park……My nephew called his dad within days….begging to come home.  My nephew was pissed that he’d not been on the computer and had watched very little TV while here…..and I was making him WALK to 7-11 to go and get a slurpee.  Never mind that its only five blocks away.  He was horrified at the very notion that he was being forced to be active.

I watch this play out with sadness.  My nephews are digging themselves an early grave with a fork and a spoon.  My parents are helping them.  And I always wonder how often this scenario plays out in homes all across the country.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that parents need to be a little more mindful of how much and what their kids are eating…..and how active they ACTUALLY are.  But since there are clearly some parents that either don’t give a crap or don’t know how to do it….maybe they would benefit from a little bit of prompting and monitoring from the government.  Maybe if parents were held accountable to their actions, or lack of actions, we wouldn’t have so many unhealthy kids.  While I’ve never been a big proponent of having “big brother” EVER be involved in personal family matters, I kind of see why Governor idiot is so concerned.  I’m not entirely on board with what he is suggesting…..but what is the better alternative??

BTW – Governor “blah blah blah….I’m an idiot”.  If your really worried about childhood obesity….fathom for a moment what got cut first when you cut educational aid in the State of Michigan……..Yep….Physical Education….GYM class……likely, the ONLY hour of activity that some kids will see on any given day.

Govenor Blah Blah Blah

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