How Not To (Or, "Today in You've Got To Be Kidding Me")

I tweeted a pic the other day, of KFC's new monstrosity of a menu item, the Double Down.  The Double Down is two fried (or grilled, if you prefer...or one of each, if you go for a late dinner and they've run out of the fried ones halfway through making yours) chicken breast patties, with a few slices of cheese, some "special sauce", and two slices of bacon sandwiched between them.  It's the perfect Atkin's sandwich!  Meat as a bun!  No more of this wrapping one's sandwich in lettuce bullshit, let's wrap the meat in more meat!  It looks terrifying on the menu, but it's really not as bad as it sounds; I wouldn't want to have one very often, but it was an interesting novelty to try once.  And I was pleasantly surprised at the nutrition info on it; given that your average fast food burger has like 700 calories, and the fries alone are around 300, I expected the DD Horror to come out at some ungodsly 1000+ calories.  But it's actually only 600ish - although the fat and sodium are off the damn charts for that caloric level - putting it about on par with the Big Mac or a Whopper (no cheese, and still about 100 cal more).  So, yeah, it's bad for you, but only about as much as every fast food item at every chain is bad for you and not to be eaten in large quantities if you can avoid it, duh.

However, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is calling for KFC to avoid marketing the DD Horror to children, keeping ads 500 yards away from schools and other places kids congregate, and they want a warning label on it!  Now I am fine with all of that, actually.  I think fast food should be less marketed to children in general, in the same way that I think cigarettes and alcohol should be less marketed to children in general - these are things that one may choose to consume as an adult, knowing the damage one is doing to one's body, but that's an adult decision, and we don't need to be encouraging children to do things that aren't good for them when they're too young to know better.  And honestly, I would hope that the picture of the damn thing is warning enough - because I'm pretty sure anyone with a modicum of common sense will look at a picture of bacon and cheese sandwiched between TWO FRIED CHICKEN BREASTS and think "This is perhaps not a very healthy item for me to consume" - but if it's not, I could see putting something on it, perhaps with the fat and sodium values of the sandwich and something about "consuming excessive amounts of concentrated animal fats and sodium is Bad For You".  

The problem is, though, that PCRM is not calling for anything so sensible as that.  What do they want the warning label to say?

"WARNING -- Eating meat can contribute to obesity in children, and can increase their risk for heart disease, diabetes and cancer."


I'm sorry, did they just suggest that all children should be vegetarians, and if they're not, they will get DEATHFATZ and heart disease and diabetes and cancer??  Forgive me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure that the mere fact of children eating meat isn't the problem here.  The problem here is the fried, salty, baconized nature and overlarge portion size of the meat in question.  So why in the name of hell did a physician's group feel the need to focus on the OMG OH NOES NOT MEAT-EATING CHILDREN! aspect of this?  They could have warned about portion size!  They could have warned about saturated fats!  They could have warned about sodium!  They could have warned about deep-fried foods!  And yet they want to make their statement about how eating meat is bad for children, period.  

This? is How Not To have a moral panic about Thinking Of The Children.  

(Also, the linked article manages to get in a nice little "Eew, fatty fat chubbies!" at the end, with their "fitness guru" [who I have renamed as their "asshole guru"] making a crack about KFC as CFC - creating fat chubbies - because that's what you'll be if you eat this sandwich.  Sigh.  Argleblargh.  *headdesk*)


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