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Fast Food Effect on Children

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The Marketing for McDonalds happy meals aim toward the children, advertising the meal along with the must have toy of the month. This is having concerned parents lash out against the company, saying their advertising is making is hard to do their job on parenting their children if they have to push back against the relentless tide of marketing aimed for their children. My opinion on the way McDonalds markets their product towards children, is just a way for a company to advertise there product and make money.

Just the same as saying when Dairy Queen advertises their ice cream that its making their kids want ice cream which leads to them being obese when really it’s their parenting skills that need to improve not the advertising from the company’s. The Author’s editorial “Not so happy meals” in the New York Times is not an effective essay due to the lack of support around their main point; which is the scrutiny over the advertising and the way the market to their children.

Though this may be an opinionated editorial on the way the author feels, I believe their argument could have been a lot stronger if they focused on the issue at hand instead of spending a good portion of their paper talking about what’s inside a happy meal. The nutrition side of the argument is obvious, that fast food restaurants standards don’t meet regulation for a Childs daily calorie intake. I believe by not focusing on the central argument they lose a lot of support.

They argue that the marketing that McDonalds does with their children including that toy of the month is making it harder to say no to their children. Instead of focusing on the way they market to their children and the effects it’s causing on them as parents, they go the route of using common stats that often confuse people without reasoning and explanation for example “According to a recent consumer survey, 37 percent of kids rank McDonalds as the top fast-food restaurant.

This is nearly four times as many as those favoring No. 2 chains, Subway”. So the kids love McDonalds, if they tied it back to the reason why they love McDonalds due to their marketing then their argument would have been so much stronger. Then they go into the argument of the leading calories in a happy meal compared to U. S. D. A daily allowance for children is double the amount allowed, and their healthy choices are almost never put into the happy meals.

Their argument has now turned into that McDonalds as a whole is bad for you and the entire food chain should be well scrutinized for its lack of nutrition. As a result of the leading televised commercials airing during children programs parents feel that it is making their parenting a hassle. A concerned parent states “last week a mom from Sacramento filed a class-action suit supported by the center to make McDonalds stop using toys as bait to lure their children into buying their happy meals.

First that’s like saying toy stores should stop advertising their products to children can concentrate more in school and not on their toys that wait for them at home. Hope Cummings, a graduate student in the UM Department of Communication Studies and Elizabeth Vandewater, an associate professor at the University of Texas at Austin, who were the co-authors of the present research explained that out of the about 1200 child-volunteers in the study, 43% (534 kids) were gamers – of them, 18% were girls and 20% were boys.

Video game popularity continues its rapid growth. This creates concerns among parents, teachers and politicians who think video games will interfere with adolescences’ social interaction and academic success”, stated Cummings. It’s the parents decisions to buy into their product in the first place whether it be the video games they play instead of homework or the happy meals they eat instead of salad, this is where parenting comes in, give your children options that are of your approval standards.

Clearly this editorial feels that McDonald’s fast food chain lacks daily nutrition whether it is for them or their children. The television commercials that air during your children’s TV shows you are not responsible for, but what you are responsible for is what your child consumes. Those commercials are persuasive to your children whether it be the new toy their advertising or the delicious pictures they show, ultimately the decision is up to you to go out a purchase from their company.

Parenting is something that comes without directions, but your children deserve some kind of direction in their nutrition, obesity is not a laughing matter and affects your kids physically and mentally. So if the way a company is advertising their product makes parenting your child difficult don’t lash out at the company, you owe it to your child to stand up and make the right decisions for them so they can have the chance to grow up and prosper into healthy young adults.

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