House passes Child Nutrition Act - "Hey, Congress - - Leave them kids alone!"

Yesterday the House passed a Child Nutrition Act that expands free or reduced cost meals to an additional 115,000 children and will provide 29 million additional meals through an after school program. Sounds great, right! Possibly, except all those meals come with strings that are the very definition of an over-reaching federal government.

No more hot dogs and candy bars at your Friday night high school football games?  Federal control of school bake sales? Washington DC deciding what items go in school vending machines? Is this what we want from our government? Where does the Constitution give Congress this kind of control of our schools and our children? And why is this a topic of the "Lame Duck" Congress?  The Senate passed this bill unanimously in August. Exactly where did the Congress get the $4.5B this bill will cost?  OH, I know...  They stole it from the kids they are feeding!

In a blog called "The Family Kitchen" it is reported that "for the first time ever, schools will have to apply nutritional standards set by the USDA to foods served outside of the cafeteria, which means no more machines or vendors selling junk food and sugary drinks. This last bit also means eliminating typical sports events foods and community building and fundraising traditions like bakes sales." Why is this the job of our federal government?

The bill was the pet project of First Lady Michelle Obama and her anti-obesity program where she is determined to tell parents what they can and cannot feed their children. The same kind of mentality that brought San Francisco to ban McDonalds from giving away "Happy Meal" toy in meal packages they deemed "unhealthy".  Sarah Palin weighed in on this, stating "Take her [Michelle Obama] anti-obesity thing that she is on. She is on this kick, right. What she is telling us is she cannot trust parents to make decisions for their own children, for their own families in what we should eat… Just leave us alone, get off our back, and allow us as individuals to exercise our own God-given rights to make our own decisions and then our country gets back on the right track.”

Interestingly House Democrats became enraged when Republican John Kline (R-MN) offered an amendment to the bill. They ended up stripping off this amendment, promising to vote on it as a separate measure. What was the "objectionable amendment", you ask? It added language that would bar federal funds to any facilities that hire workers who refuse or lie on sex offender background checks. Yes, thats right, Democrats don't seem to want children protected from sex offenders!

The bill is, however, a boon for local farmers as it encourages schools to buy food from local farmers. It also increases farm subsidies by allowing schools to purchase surplus farm products.

Like the Dream Act, this bill should not be being dealt with by the Lame Duck Congress. It is not an emergency matter that must be decided before the new session begins. But it clearly is an example of how the Democrats want to reach deeper and deeper into your lives, reducing your freedom and controlling how you choose to live. The Constitution does not give Congress this power. Why do we?

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Comments

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The addition of John Kline amendment would have made the Senate and House bills different. This means the differences would have had to have been reconciled. Since the Senate has refused to pass any legislation until tax cuts are extended for everyone, this could have killed a bill which has broad bipartisan support. Additionally, I like to think that providing a healthy start for our youth is one of the most basic and important American values. Also, the idea that this is being pushed off on schools is ridiculous. Schools and families who can't afford proper lunches are screaming for this. It will give schools more money for lunch, give more students who's families are struggling accessibility, and provide much better tasting alternatives!

Thank you for your reply Mr. Anonymous. I can see where you are coming from on the Kline amendment. So, where is the vote on the stand alone issue of federal funding to pedophiles?

As for the rest of your story, I agree with you about the need for families that can't afford school meals to have a way to accomplish. I would just prefer it be accomplished through philanthropy, charitable organizations and churches rather than trough taxation and bigger government. Charitable organizations have a much lower overhead burden that heavy government bureaucracies. 

In a side note, I had an interesting discussion with my cousin over Thanksgiving about this very topic. He is very much a tax and spend liberal except on the second amendment and illegal immigration.  There he and I agree.

He holds a solid belief that people will not give to charities to support these kinds of programs and we must therefore tax it out of the general population. I find this to be a common belief among my liberal friends.

Liberals believe that people won't support philanthropy because, by and large, they don't. Conservatives believe people will support philanthropy because... we do!

And therein lies one of the major differences in philosophy between liberals and conservatives.

More on this later...

Give me a break!  I think parents like Ms. Palin and Mr. Price should continue to feed their kids whatever ***p they want!  They are free to do this.  Please feel free to stuff  your kids with salty snacks, high calorie-carbonated drinks...all day long!  We promise we won't stop you.

---You write: 
"Sarah Palin weighed in on this, stating "Take her [Michelle Obama] anti-obesity thing that she is on. She is on this kick, right. What she is telling us is she cannot trust parents to make decisions for their own children, for their own families in what we should eat… Just leave us alone, get off our back, and allow us as individuals to exercise our own God-given rights to make our own decisions and then our country gets back on the right track.”

Thank you for allowing me and Mrs. Palin our God given right to raise and feed our children as we see fit. Not sure why we need your permission for that, but thank you for giving it.

Now on to the bigger picture... Why do we need the federal government in the back yards of our schools lecturing us about how to raise our children. This is not the duty of, nor a power given to, the Federal Government by the US Constitution. Remember, under our Constitution, we tell the Federal Government what powers they have and don't have. Not the other way around.

I am not sure why you felt the need to be nasty about this, but I certainly appreciate your time to read my posting and for taking your time to react (as opposed to "respond").

I wish you and your family a Merry Christmas or in whatever other holiday season you choose to partake.

Just a few points, the entire background check issue is moot, background checks are already mandated for child workers and have been for years, making this ammendment redundant and an obvious ploy to halt this bill. In order to work with children one non only has a background check but is fingerprinted and run through a national database, I myself have been through the process in two seperate states.

As for the philanthorpy arguement you miss one crucial detail, there is only so much money to go around and a nearly infinite demand for it. Should I give to cancer patients, or hungry children, battered wives or disaster relief, scholarship programs or mental health, museums or PBS. There are and should be some issues that as a society we prioritize and assure they have the funding as opposed to leaving it up to philanthropists that may or may not choose that particular goal this year.

Lastly, and I realize this is entirely due to your somewhat biased slant on the issue but nowhere does the bill state that hotdogs and bakesales are on the endangered list. There is however phrasing to offer healthier options which could just as easily be a lower fat lower sodium hot dog on a whole wheat bun. What the schools do with it remains to be seen, but considering that this bill has essentially been around since 1966 with moderate changes each time it comes up for reapproval every five years, I really don't see it as the hideous monster of governmental overreach that you make it out to be.
 

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