The Not-So-Tasty Link Between Pizza and Occupy Wall Street

Today I learned that a friend is among the many people being removed from protest locations in New York City with the Occupy Wall Street movement.

And in school lunches everywhere today, pizza…lots of pizza, was bought and consumed.

Connection?

Congress recently proposed a bill that allowed school lunches to continue to count pizza as a serving of vegetables.  WHAT!?  Yes.  You see pizza has two tablespoons of tomato paste, so I guess it counts.  Why?  What would motivate congress to make such an absurd determination?  USDA spokeswoman says: “While it’s unfortunate that some members of Congress continue to put special interests ahead of the health of America’s children, USDA remains committed to practical, science-based standards for school meals.”  Special interests?  What special interests?  It’s no secret that large corporations spend a great deal of money for lobbyists to convince law-makers to swing the rule of the country in their favor, and the food industry is certainly no exception.

Enter Occupiers.

I’ve been wanting to write about the Occupy movement for a while now.  It’s definitely a disjointed crowd that needs organization, and many criticisms against them are valid.  But the most common potshot I hear suggests that the occupiers are just lazy young people with no ambitions that love to blame rich people for all their problems.  I’m sure there are some there.  But I also think back to the Tea Party movement and its magnetic draw of racists.  The movement quickly disassociated themselves from the bigots and claimed that they can’t control everyone who attends their rallies.  That’s fair, but the same must also be said of the occupiers.  Now I’m not about to occupy Wall Street, or Cleveland, but I do have a criticism of our governmental culture.  Why is it much easier for rich people to sway the opinions of congress?

In the new census I also learned that in 2020 men are projected to be 83% obese…73% for women.  Interesting timing.  Did you know that in order to determine how many prison facilities will be needed in the future, experts gauge the literacy rate of 5th graders?  So why not gauge the future obesity rate based on the amount of pizza given to elementary children?  Big Pizza has replaced Big Tobacco; and it’ll take decades of children sitting around with diabetes before we realize that this is wrong.

Look, children need to be taught…that’s why we have school.  And it’s society’s job to determine what is acceptable teaching material.  KIDS NEED TO BE TAUGHT HOW TO EAT APPROPRIATELY.  Do kids get to decide what to study, how much homework is given, or what grades are handed to them?  Of course not.  Crying out that kids are losing their rights to chose what they eat just because congress can’t figure out how to disappoint the big pockets of food corporations is not OK.

Now I don’t know all the motivations behind the Occupy Wall Street movement, but to me this is a good enough reason to protest in one way or another.

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