Thursday, January 19, 2006

Stay out of my Village:

You knew the issue wouldn’t go away and that they would at some point give it another try. Yesterday parents and a consumer group, The Campaign for a Commercial-Free childhood, filed a lawsuit against Viacom and Kellogg. Their aim is to cease marketing junk food to children during shows where over 15% of the audience is under the age of eight.

Now as a parent of a child under the age of eight, I feel I have some authority to speak about the subject. For starters my son is one of those kids who wakes up in the morning and watches Nickelodeon, The Disney Channel, Cartoon Network and every other station while mommy and daddy get dressed for work. When he comes home he does the same thing, in between playing with his toys, while dinner is being prepared.

I will agree that during those shows my son is subject to every marketing ploy possible. Kids having a great time playing with the coolest new toy, kids eating so much candy that they turn into the fruit it represents as well as ads from all the fast food chains and snack makers.

I though don’t care! Yes don’t care! You know why? Because despite all the advertising I’m still the parent who’s in control. Last I checked when I go to the supermarket executives from Viacom and Kellogg aren’t pushing my cart yelling, “pick that one”. I decide what goes in my cart not them and certainly not my son. Sure he might say “daddy can I get that” but you know what I say as the adult? “No, daddy doesn’t want you to eat that because it won’ help you get big". It’s amazing how when the adult says no, it works and the stuff doesn’t enter the house. I would love to visit the parents of this lawsuit homes and see what they have in their cabinets.

I have to ask these people, who pays for the groceries at the checkout? I know my son doesn’t. What child under eight even has money to buy any of this stuff? These people need to start taking some more responsibility for themselves. They should worry more about their kids watching MTV while they’re trying to get ready for work then about store purchases that they have complete control over.

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