Happy Meals under attack (again)

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Hugh, Dec 15, 2010.

  1. Hugh macrumors 6502a


    Feb 9, 2003
    Erie, PA
    McDonald's is hit with a class action suit this time. Three actions;

    1) How long has McDonald's selling Happy Meals and this becomes a problem how?

    2) Why can't these parents say no to their kids, if they don't want them to have a fatty Happy Meal?

    3) Why only McDonald's? Wendy's here sell toys to kids in meals as well, so does Burger King.


  2. citizenzen macrumors 65816

    Mar 22, 2010
    From the news item...

    The suit was brought on behalf of Monet Parham, a mother of two in Sacramento, and other plaintiffs, the CSPI said. "I object to the fact that McDonald's is getting into my kids' heads without my permission and actually changing what my kids want to eat," Parham said in a statement.

    There are many, many negative influences on children and it's the parent's responsibility to provide guidance to help children understand and make the right choices in life.

    While I supported San Francisco's supervisors right to regulate commerce on a local level, I do not support this class action lawsuit.
  3. appleguy123 macrumors 604


    Apr 1, 2009
    15 minutes in the future
    Children are entirely dependent on their parents. If parents don't want their kids to have Happy Meals, then their kids wouldn't have them.
    I do think that McDonalds should stop advertising the toys on the television, but I'm not generally fond of mediating my personal opinion as law.
  4. Ugg macrumors 68000


    Apr 7, 2003
    So tons of advertising that is more than likely vetted by top child psychologists is ok if it comes from a private company but it's wrong for parents and the government to want to protect kids from it?

    Mixed message there dude. Obesity is the number one danger to the US. We should be spending more fighting that threat than we spend in the ME.
  5. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Oct 9, 2006
    I think some guide lines should be put in place on healthy food if you want to put a toy in the meal. I know when I was a kid I would want a happy meal because of the cheap toy that came with it. No other reason.

    I have no problem with the toy but put some healthy choices with the toy.

    What is sad is it has gotten into peoples head that healthy food taste bland and no one likes it. Kids seem to think that as well. It is time we as a nation try to start teaching our kids that healthy food does taste good and that means going after things like the happy meal.

    That being said McDonalds fries taste really good.
  6. CorvusCamenarum macrumors 65816


    Dec 16, 2004
    Birmingham, AL
    I suppose next she'll file suit against every manufacturer whose products in the cereal aisle come with a toy, too. Or pretty much everything in the center of the grocery store that's marketed to kids.
  7. Eraserhead macrumors G4


    Nov 3, 2005
    Cereal is generally not that bad for you when you have it once a day. And its usually fortified with vitamins.
  8. CorvusCamenarum macrumors 65816


    Dec 16, 2004
    Birmingham, AL
    Most of it is just processed corn and sugar. The brands marketed to children, anyway.
  9. garybUK Guest


    Jun 3, 2002
    Ridiculous, suing someone because your a bad parent. I do believe the 'Happy Meals' should be changed though to the following:

    Bottle of water or Orange Juice .... no soft drinks
    Carrot or Apple in those little bags they do
    No Salt or Added sugars in the food

    But saying that why are confectionery companies like Nestle and Cadbury allowed to target sweets like Haribo and Chocolate Buttons to kids but wrong for McDonnalds etc.

    There needs to be a blanket rule for processed foods and children.
  10. citizenzen macrumors 65816

    Mar 22, 2010
    The blanket rule should be an adult wise enough to say, "That **** is bad for you! Here eat this salad I made for you instead."

    The problem is that we are becoming a society that is turning more and more to eating take-out food for reasons of both convenience and economy. A recent Jack In The Box spelled it out: you can feed your family for less money eating at JITB than you can buying groceries and cooking your meals.

    Never mind the children's toy. Can we get parents to pass up the prize of a quick and cheap way to fill their families bellies that spares them the effort of preparation and clean up and a meal they know that their kids will enjoy?
  11. firestarter macrumors 603


    Dec 31, 2002
    Green and pleasant land
    The problem with junk food is that it's an industrial product that's not really possible to emulate or compete with at home.

    These guys use additional fats and chemicals to improve texture and 'mouth feel', glutamates to improve taste, flavourings, sweeteners. Artificial colour is used to disguise poor quality recovered meat and high fat content. All that sugar - even in 'savory' products really gets you hooked on the taste.

    I don't have kids (nor do I particularly want any) but I sympathise with parents trying to get their kids to eat good food. Advertising junk during children's programs, adding extra enticements in the form of toys has to be pretty difficult to compete with, on top of all the 'big food' tricks to get the kid hooked on the flavour.

    I wouldn't usually be in favour of legislation against food - but in this case it seems reasonable.
  12. freeny macrumors 68020


    Sep 27, 2005
    Location: Location:
    More often then not, my kids only want the toy and end up only eating a few French fries. This woman should do what I do... Say no.
  13. takao macrumors 68040


    Dec 25, 2003
    Dornbirn (Austria)
    last time i checked you can buy one of the cheap toys without the food itself so i'm not getting the problem

    also i'm not sure why the big uproar ... nobody forces you to go into a mcdonalds to eat something with your kid
    much more important for the children's health is what they eat at home where, even in america, most food is eaten
  14. MyDesktopBroke macrumors 6502

    Jun 2, 2007
    Come on now. :cool:
  15. MrSmith macrumors 68040


    Nov 27, 2003
    My kids have a happy meal occasionally. These self-righteous fascists want to deprive us of that right? I suppose they don't want me drinking beer either.

    Wish I had one of them between me and a McD counter...
  16. fivepoint macrumors 65816


    Sep 28, 2007
    Up next is the government stopping by to sue parents who bake pies, brownies, cakes, etc. (far worse for you than a happy meal or sugary cereal!) for their children as a form a child-endangerment! Glad to see there are so many more freedom-advocates in this thread than the last one. Seems like people are coming around, or are at least a bit more vocal about it now than before! Common sense people from all sides should be able to agree that government shouldn't be telling us in any way shape or form what we can eat and what we can't eat!

  17. citizenzen macrumors 65816

    Mar 22, 2010
    The previous thread was quite different.

    It involved a local government passing a local law regulating commerce... something that's done in many different ways across this country.
  18. AP_piano295 macrumors 65816

    Mar 9, 2005
    I'm not particularly concerned one way or the other about happy meals but I'm tired of you being melodramatic.

    Telling companies not to target the advertising of harmful products at children doesn't constitute "the government telling you what to eat". Your being dramatic and disingenuous.

    Cigarette and alcohol companies are prohibited from advertising to children.

    This isn't that different...
  19. MrSmith macrumors 68040


    Nov 27, 2003
    Except hamburgers aren't chemically addictive.
  20. leekohler macrumors G5


    Dec 22, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois
    Here's an idea:

    Why not make Happy Meals less s****y? Maybe they won't be attacked then. If I had kids, they sure would not be eating that garbage. McDonalds is disgusting. They have a lot of nerve even calling that crap food.
  21. Raid macrumors 68020


    Feb 18, 2003
    Further to your point, the OP is about a group of private citizens filling suit against a private company... the only branch of the government that is involved here is the judicial branch at the bequest of the concerned citizens.

    Not really evil big brother bearing down on the proletariat is it? Or are the objections from FP stem from the belief that the free market will clear this up?

    That would only make too much sense Lee. I bet in some way McD's is trying, but has to think of preparation time and profit margins. Stock holders gotta eat too! ;)
  22. iJohnHenry macrumors P6


    Mar 22, 2008
    On tenterhooks
    Ray Krok got the idea for McDonald's from the old "handle" for the local greasy spoon.

    The Choke n' Puke. :D

    Maybe we should be thankful they don't put nicotine or caffeine in their concoctions. :rolleyes:
  23. MrSmith macrumors 68040


    Nov 27, 2003
    The plaintiff rests, your honour. :)
  24. leekohler macrumors G5


    Dec 22, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois
    That's for sure.
  25. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    I'm not a parent, so generally don't have much to add to these types of threads... but I do see the effects of pester power every week in the supermarket or elsewhere, and honestly, I can't blame some parents for giving in sometimes when you see the histrionics and tempers that start when some kids don't get what they want, particularly when other adults around them start casting glances and so forth.

    The free market shibboleth presupposes free informed choices made by rational actors, so generally, I'm on the side of harassed parents, really, not huge corporations that push junk food on kids with the lure of cheap toys to suck them in. Besides, it's healthy to see awareness and pushback from consumers when it comes to marketing.

    Because of consumer awareness, some supermarket chains in the UK have now removed candy from their till areas, where kids were likely to see it, often at adult knee-height, packaged with cartoon characters. Same sort of thing.

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