Monday, February 27, 2012

New Rule: Cafeteria Style

Rule #195: A bitter swill to swallow

If you complain about runaway government spending and/or support school vouchers, then you can't complain about the shoddy state of school lunches. In my hometown of Lafayette, some moms have posted online pictures of their children's cafeteria trays. I see the quality has dropped considerably since I was there. I'd guess the price for such a meal has risen, too. It's like anytime I pick up a magazine or newspaper for the first time in years and discover that it's thinner, poorly put together, pricier and composed mostly of fluff.


Though that pizza looks pretty good to me about now.
But a school cafeteria meal isn't subject to the market forces of a changing information landscape-slash-corporate cost-cutting — it's supposed to be something, like the public school system overall, that we make a priority. Why do we speak so much about our children but actively cheer the repeated budget-cutting of our schools? How are children supposed to learn if they're hungry? Why do we fret so much over cursing and nip-slips on television damaging our kids, and yet are A-OK with the kind of gutted educational system that would feed them brown corn?

Is this intended to make children say, "Gee, I'm not performing sufficiently enough to escape this. I should step up my game and hope I get into private school where I don't have to eat like I'm in a decrepit soup kitchen?" Are parents looking at this and thinking, "Yes, these meals, crumbling school and cracked highways are well worth my boss getting a tax cut?" Well, at least a couple of parents seem shocked at the content of their kids' lunches. Maybe this will serve as a clarion call against the evils-of-taxation argument. Maybe it will even spark opposition to Gov. Bobby Jindal's education "reform" that would guarantee that future lunches won't be this succulent.

But more likely, they'll blame Michelle Obama for her health initiatives and Barack for being a communist. 

I can't imagine how mad I'd be if I were actually a parent.

1 comment:

amie said...

I have been SCREAMING about this for years. This is why my kids bring their lunches; there are items that are served at school that I actually don't allow in my house. Here's a tidbit of info for you...did you know that potatoes are considered a veggie? Therefore, there have been times in the past that the kids are served french fries AND tator tots (2 veggies...get it?) My absolute favorite, though, has to be this lovely lunch: 2 Eggrolls (main dish), fried rice, veggie, canned fruit. Um...no thanks.