It has come to my attention that some bicycle retailers are having trouble finding training wheels sturdy enough to withstand the crushing weight of America’s obese 6 year old kids. I am not making this up.
Now, as an aside, I take a dim view of statistics. I think that every time a person hears a statistic, they should add “BULLSHIT!” to the end of it, just like you add “in bed” to the end of a fortune cookie. That said, I looked around a bit, and sources seem to agree that as much as a third of America’s kids are fat. (Bullshit!)
Here’s a quote from the article:
We’re seeing 6-year-old kids who are 130 pounds, and we just can’t put training wheels on a bike that won’t collapse under their weight.
Who can we turn to about this — not to blame, but perhaps to educate or to plead for help?
Option one: Bullies
This option was suggested by a cyclist friend of mine. Why not just loosen up on the bullying and let kids haze themselves into fitness?
It won’t work, that’s why. First of all, I think a lot of fatties, myself included, eat because it made them feel good inside. Teasing them is just going to make them run to the cupcakes for comfort.
Secondly, the bullies are probably fat themselves and not likely to bring up the weight issue.
Option two: the Parents
I don’t know about other people, but I can tell you from my own experience that my parents did everything they could to help me control my weight. I was encouraged to ride bikes, play outside, and was required to play sports during the school months. I rode my BMX bike to school.
So, at least in my case, my parents did everything they could and I was still overweight. You’d have to pretty much lock a child inside a cage to keep them away from sugary foods and sodas these days.
Option Three: The Schools
You know, it’s kind of amazing that any schools are open. They get blamed for pretty much everything, have to deal with crazy-ass parents, and don’t even get paid much for their efforts. Sure, teachers get three months off in the summer, but you’d need at least twice that much to maintain any sort of sanity.
I don’t think we can really ask teachers to do any more than we’re already asking. Pretty soon they’re just going to start punching anyone over 25 or so in the face just to preserve their sense of self. I don’t blame them, personally.
Having said that, if you can find a group of teachers out partying at a bar, make friends and stick close. They are going to get knee-walking drunk. Believe it.
The answer: Alien Farting Unicorn Attack
Seriously, this is the only thing that can help us now, because the stuff that would really help isn’t going to happen.
We’re spending all our effort shouting at one another over politics and politicians when it’s as plain as day that the government is not in charge. The businesses are. If we want change, we’re going to have to bring it about with our wallets. Votes aren’t doing a damn thing besides giving us something to get pissed about while we eat.
Look at it this way: we asked big business for cheap food and they found a way to give us record production of crops that cost less to buy than to produce.
We have the power to take it back the other way, folks.