December 29, 2010

Oh, my good God…

Mother Sues McDonald’s for ‘Interfering’ With Kids

Happy Meals just got a little more expensive for McDonald’s: the fast food chain has been sued by California mother Monet Parham for using toys to make her two young daughters want nutritionally unsound Happy Meals…

Parham, mother of a six-year-old and two-year-old, said in a CSPI press release that: “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… what kids see as a fun toy, I now realize is a sophisticated, high-tech marketing scheme that’s destined to put McDonald’s between me and my daughters… I want McDonald’s to stop interfering with my family.”

Owwwww! My head hurts! Soooo much concentrated stupid!

*clutches head*

*takes ibuprofen*

Sigh. Okay, feel a little better now.

Are you fucking kidding me?! This Parham woman actually sat down, thought anywhere in this her complaint made any real legal sense, and went through the process of filing the lawsuit? I mean, I guess she’s got CSPI behind her, and they’re pretty nutty themselves, but shit, still!

She’s just another parent who finds it easier to file a goddamn lawsuit and go on some spurious health campaign when she’d accomplish a lot more and save a lot of energy by merely saying to her kids “no, I’m not going to buy that for you right now”. That far, this seems pretty run-of-the-mill.

But then she out and says the real issue here, and you see McDonalds is merely the scapegoat rather than any real cause: “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.”

That’s right. Her major complaint is that some entity other than herself is communicating with her children. Only SHE may indoctrinate them, of course! What next, if she’s super Christian, would she sue a Jewish person for telling her kids about Chanukah or mitzvahs? God forbid her children have tastes other than what specific ones she decides they may have. If someone provides her children with any contrary ideas or temptations, OMG they’re interfering with her authority as a parent!

I mean, most when seeing this would want to defend McDonalds, but I’m not interested in that. McDonalds can take it. What worries me is this idea that a parent has some inherent right to be the sole provider and dictator of any and all information and tastes the children may have. That this control is so sacred that it’s a lawsuit worthy offense should it be breached. It is an egregious lack of recognition that these children are SEPARATE PEOPLE, so much that she is filing a lawsuit, with the CSPI’s support, for anyone daring to send a message to children as if they’re anything other than the bubble-wrapped property of adults.

It’s not uncommon for parents expect their children to think and act like themselves, often that being the very reason they had children to begin with, expecting to train them up in a certain philosophy or to a certain end. Trouble is, many seem to think that to do so, they must be the only ones who influence their kids at all. While parents are by far the biggest influence on kids, they are also no where near the only influence. That is just a fact of life. There are other people in their lives, or at least there should be if you expect to have kids who are even remotely socially healthy.

And that’s what is happening here, taken to a frightening extreme. Parham believes anyone other than herself having any influence on her children at all is a crime worth making others pay for. Rather than, you know, teaching her children to make their own healthy decisions. Then again, making personal healthy decisions is something humans do, humans being something Parham must certainly think her children are not.