By advertising that Happy Meals include toys, McDonald’s unfairly and deceptively markets directly to children. When McDonald’s bombards children with advertisements or other marketing for Happy Meals with toys, many children will pester their parents to take them to McDonald’s. Once there, they are more than likely to receive a meal that is too high in calories, saturated fat, added sugars, and sodium, and devoid of whole grains. Developing a lifelong habit of eating unhealthy meals is likely to promote obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and other life-threatening or debilitating diet-related diseases…
…Therefore, unless we can resolve this matter in the near term, CSPI will bring a lawsuit that seeks an injunction preventing McDonald’s from providing toys with purchases of any or all Happy Meals.
The steamy reply from McDonald’s CEO Jim Skinner:
At McDonald's, we listen to what our customers tell us. For the past 30 years they have told us — again, overwhelmingly — that they approve of our Happy Meal program. Three decades provide a lot of listening time. That's why we are confident that parents understand and appreciate that Happy Meals are a fun treat, with right-sized, quality food choices for their children.
Just get a room already!
I’m calling bullshit on this whole ridiculous mess. First of all, McDonalds, I don’t care what you say. Your food has not been, and will never be a healthy choice for children (or anyone that matter). Your food is a cheap thrill, a guilty pleasure, and is beneficial only in that it provides inexpensive, fatty, sugar-laden calories to quell a hangover, or to promote self-hatred. But even there, Taco Bell has you beat.
As for you, CSPI, it’s your brand of no-fun rhetoric that really pisses me off. You’re making food feel like a fucking dangerous animal. It’s not. I understand that you want to help children and curb childhood obesity, but understand that we don’t need to get litigious about this. The idea should be to educate parents; to help them make healthy choices for their children. Taking away toys just makes you look like some kind of asshole.
And parents? If your whiny kids are getting the better of you by throwing tantrums about Happy Meals then you need some help. Isn’t it your job, as an adult, to help your kids make the right choices? This’ll probably come back to haunt me should the wife and I reproduce, BUT: Buck up, grow a pair, and say “No” to your brat… repeatedly.
Ahhh. I feel so much better now.Time for another Quarter Pounder.
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