When I went to Scottsdale this weekend, I figured I’d write a couple short, easy posts since my mom only has dial-up. But I got a bit worked up reading some columns on the Cookie Monster that attacked PBS for using the blue puppet for preaching healthy eating.
As regular readers of this site know, I talk a lot about the obesity epidemic. So it’s not surprising that I would come down hard on the columnists for attacking PBS’s attempt at doing something positive. Sure enough, this single post resulted in more hits and comments from angry Conservatives than any I’ve ever had.
Of course, most of the action started up right before I was about to head home, which takes five hours driving time plus 1.5 hours of stopping for Seth’s potty training. I joked with my wife that those jumping over from a link in the National Review Online were like a plague of locusts. My wife reminded me it was Passover, which suggests obvious ironies.
One of my detractors even wrote an entire item methodically taking apart my Cookie Monster post. He does a pretty good job of twisting my arguments into sounding like a self-righteous attack on America. Another sent me a picture of a man holding a Cookie Monster in bed. The man in the photo even bears a resemblance to me. (I’m awaiting permission to publish it on this site.)
Looking at the comments under my post are quite edifying. The first few are from friends who take my side. But the vast majority hated my column. Some are moderately vicious. In reading them, I’ve learned a few things:
- Many Americans are incredibly resistant to the idea that there is an obesity epidemic. While I had already received comments and e-mail to this effect, the reaction to my post confirms this.
- It’s no wonder the Liberals are having such a hard time of it these days. Many of them have been cowed into silence by the vehemence and intensity of the Conservatives. Bully tactics work.
- Those who have long pronounced their hate for Sesame Street will defend Cookie Monster to the death.
- I should be careful in my use of the words “moron” and “stupid.” That was bad taste on my part, if not effective in getting a response.
- A lot of people seem to be scared of fruit and vegetables. Readthe Hobbesian’s description of a vegetarian: “How about a compromise: Rather than fundamentally alter Cookie Monster to accommodate a fad (give it another 5 years, we’ll be worrying about starving children again and the old Cookie Monster is going to look like a good role model), let’s just add another character. They’ve done that over the years. We could call him ‘Joe Fu.’ He would be about cookie monster’s height, with scraggly pale green fur (Nearly white with a greenish tinge, so he more closely resembles the typical vegan) and he’d be slender as a reed.”
- It’s laughable when Conservatives complain about media pushing political agendas. Why can’t lowly PBS, which has few followers anyway, nudge our culture when the food industry does it all the time?
- My website title “DadTalk: News for Serious Parents” can be used against me to say that I’m self-righteous.
- Some people think that cookies are the way to a child’s happiness.
- It turns out the Culture Wars are for real.
- Parents are blamed most for the obesity epidemic. I agree and disagree on this point. Those who do not have access to affordable, healthy food and those who don’t have access to good information sources need help from society.
- Quite a number of people on both ends of the political spectrum don’t let their kids watch commercial TV.
- My wife still loves me despite inviting locusts to dinner.