Of all the things for Mayor Mike Bloomberg to oppose, we didn’t think breakfast for hungry kids would be one of them. But it is.
In fairness, it’s not the mayor’s desire to keep hungry kids from eating breakfast that’s led to his opposition to a City Council-backed plan to provide “the most important meal of the day” for kids in New York’s public schools, it’s his perpetual war on obesity that has him nervous the plan could lead to fat kids eating two breakfasts, thus making them even fatter.
“We have a problem in obesity in children,” Dr. Thomas Farley, commissioner of the city’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, testified at a City Council hearing earlier this year. “I am concerned that if we have breakfast in every classroom, that that could contribute to the problem and possibly make it worse.”
He went on to say that more kids are suffering from health problems related to obesity than are from “not eating enough calories.”
Regardless, hizzonor’s position that the risk of a fat kid sneaking an extra breakfast outweighs the benefits of feeding hungry kids — in our humble opinion — is one of the stupider positions Bloomberg’s taken in his endless crusade to protect you from yourself. And this is the same guy who is enforcing a ban on donating food to homeless shelters because the city isn’t able to monitor the sodium content of the food.
As we pointed out yesterday, while the mayor thinks the risks of allowing a few fat kids to sneak an extra breakfast outweighs the benefits of making sure no kid goes to school hungry, it’s currently not a requirement in New York City schools to offer physical education classes — which makes City Hall’s opposition to the breakfast plan even dumber.