What if every one in five children were being exposed to conditions that would lead to high cholesterol and blood pressure levels, which are risk factors for heart disease, sleep apnea, learning and memory problems, higher incidence of orthopedic problems, liver disease, and asthma?
You’d probably say those are some shitty parents, right? Well, the fact is that children are being exposed to these conditions because they are fat—that’s right, one in every five children are overweight, that’s doubled in the past 30 years.
I saw Bill Clinton speak a couple months ago and one thing he discussed was children and diabetes. I thought that was a lame topic, but I was pretty tipsy and just happy to see him so he could have just eaten a ham sandwich and I would have been happy.
Yesterday, my date to see Clinton told me her boss’ little girl is in the hospital and they think she has diabetes. This really pissed me off. Her boss is fat. Orca fat. And, his children are fat, too. There ain’t nothing wrong with being big boned or heavy set, but healthy. But, when you are obese, and your children are obese, there is a serious problem.
I think we are all pretty aware of how serious the health problems for fat children. But there are other concerns. According a study, more than 282,000 overweight children younger than 7 do not fit into most child safety or booster seats available on the market.
There are emotional concerns, too. Obese children may feel isolated and lonely and it can be devastating on their self-esteem and identity problems.
--Shouldn't these parents have to take some responsibility for their children's weight problems? Is obesity a form of child abuse?
--Why shouldn’t a parent have be liable if their children are being fed junk and allowed to spend all their free time in front of the TV? While it may not be as severe as starving a child, it certainly can be as destructive on the body and deadly.
--What about the government? Tommy Thompson calling reporters fat isn't goingt to cut it. Our government ships crap food through Title I and the school lunch program, allow vending machines in schools and then cut gym for test prep. That’s certainly a recipe for fat kids.
--Who is teaching these kids about nutrition? Roughly two-thirds of American adults are above a healthy weight, and one-third are obese, I'd hardly say they would be qualififed.
While doing some research (read: googling), I came across this article. In 1996, a California woman's 13-year-old daughter weighed 680 pounds when she died of congestive heart failure. The woman was found guilty of misdemeanor child abuse. She was eligible for up to a year behind bars. She was acquitted of felony child abuse, punishable by up to six years in prison. The prosecutors said they were not claiming that raising a fat child is a crime. Instead, they charged her because of the condition of her daughter's body, especially the bedsores.
It is pretty sad that because the emotional scars and long-term health problems caused by obesity are not as conspicuous as bedsores, no one is accountable except the child that must live with these problems.