On Friday, which marked former first lady Michelle Obama’s 56th birthday, the Trump administration began rolling back her widely panned school lunch program.
Implemented during her husband’s tenure in the White House and ostensibly geared toward making school lunches more “healthy,” the former first lady’s draconian lunch program resulted in a myriad of problems, including:
- Nasty lunches that allegedly tasted like “vomit” …
- Piles of uneaten food …
- Grossly underfed students …
- Financially broke school districts …
As the Obamas have always been wont to do, they, of course, ignored the problems. Years later, President Donald Trump’s administration now seeks to remedy them.
“Schools and school districts continue to tell us that there is still too much food waste and that more common-sense flexibility is needed to provide students nutritious and appetizing meals. We listened and now we’re getting to work,” Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced Friday.
“Our proposed changes empower schools to give their very best to our children nationwide and have the potential to benefit nearly 100,000 schools and institutions that feed 30 million children each school day through USDA’s school meal programs. Providing children with wholesome, nutritious food is part of our motto at USDA, which is to ‘do right and feed everyone.'”
Instead of forcing a top-down vision on every school in America, the Trump administration wants to promote healthy eating but allow each individual school to tailor its menu to its individual students and their individual needs.
Suffice it to say, the administration understands that, as an example, a high school choir singer needs to consume fewer calories during lunch than, say, a high school football player like then-Eden Prairie High School center Tony Yost.
“For lunch, he usually eats whatever the school cafeteria serves. That used to be enough for Yost to maintain his 6-foot-2, 240-pound playing weight. Not anymore,” USA Today reported in 2012.
“Thanks to standards championed by First Lady Michelle Obama and released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, school lunches now have calorie limits. For grades 9-12, the range is 750-850 calories. And for athletes like Yost, that’s simply not enough to get through the rest of the school day plus practice.”
But the first lady didn’t appear to care. Neither do any of her groupie-like followers, who responded to the Trump administration’s announcement Friday by pouncing.
First Lady @MichelleObama relied on experts to develop healthy school lunch standards
Trump is rolling back these standards due to potato industry lobbying. The result is saltier, fattier and more processed food
And he did this on Michelle’s birthday ?https://t.co/h6TdnsBOCr
— Chris Lu (@ChrisLu44) January 18, 2020
This program helped our kids’ health and our country’s future. No reason to cut it, beside pure meanness.https://t.co/wz2cicsvT6
— Carolyn B. Maloney (@CarolynBMaloney) January 17, 2020
I’ve been fighting alongside @MichelleObama for years to bring healthier lunches into schools. Now, on her birthday, Trump is rolling back her healthy lunch initiative.
This is shameful. Students shouldn’t suffer just because of Trump’s pettiness. https://t.co/UFN7g0Cehl
— Congressman Tim Ryan (@RepTimRyan) January 17, 2020
The Trump administration just proposed rules to weaken Michelle Obama’s healthy school lunch initiative—on her birthday. “This is an especially petty way of getting back at Barack Obama via his wife,” writes @kdrum. https://t.co/j8sihQf2Sy
— Mother Jones (@MotherJones) January 18, 2020
So will it be a Trumpian diet now at school tuck shops? Manufacturers might not winge now…sugar, fat, preservative-rich? Petty & deadly. What lobbyists got in whose ears on this one?
“Trump Targets Michelle Obama’s School Lunch Program on Her Birthday” https://t.co/wmqglHWSgo
— Natasha Mitchell?? (@natashamitchell) January 18, 2020
As usual, members of the left seem wholly unwilling to consider the objectively valid reasons why the administration is pursuing this rollback. Instead, they’ve chosen to frame the rollback as an example of the president not caring about children’s health. They’ve also chosen to claim the rollback was purposefully announced on Friday.
To be clear, a USDA spokesperson told The New York Times that the plan wasn’t purposefully announced on Obama’s birthday. That was coincidental.
Moreover, in an extensive press release, the agency outlined how its new rules will still promote healthy eating but not at the expense of common sense.
“Under the school meals proposed rule, school nutrition professionals have more flexibility to serve appetizing and healthy meals that appeal to their students’ preferences and subsequently reduce food waste,” the release reads.
“The proposed rule also encourages state and local operators to focus resources on feeding children rather than administrative paperwork. These improvements build on the 2018 reforms that preserve strong nutrition standards while providing schools the additional flexibilities they need to best serve America’s students.”
Nowhere in the release is there any talk of hamburgers and pizzas. There’s only talk of flexibility, a concept that appears to be anathema to the rigid ideologues of the left.
In their minds, it seems a one-size-fits-all approach is always the right course of action, even when it’s plainly not. Take what’s currently happening in California, where a one-size-fits-all bill ostensibly designed to boost workers’ rights, AB5, has gutted the gig economy and left countless locals without work:
New CA Law Crushes Independent Contractors, Including Some Sign Language Interpreters.#AB5 Disproportionately Hurts the Deaf Community Who Rely on Interpreters for Medical, Educational & Legal Needs.
— Senator Shannon Grove (@ShannonGroveCA) January 16, 2020
— clementyne (@ohmyclementyne) January 18, 2020
#AB5stories, Jared: “#AB5 forced me to shut down my business. I went from making $80,000/year in home services to a minimum wage employee. My family trade is gone. I’ve gone from working 4 days/week to spend time with my kids to not knowing if I can make ends meet working 7 days”
— Kevin Kiley (@KevinKileyCA) January 18, 2020
Been contract technical writer for 15 years but now jobless with no prospects thanks to #AB5stories #AB5. Gutted. California gig jobs will now go to out of state freelancers. Shame on you @LorenaSGonzalez
— clementyne (@ohmyclementyne) January 17, 2020
Michelle: “I am a nail technician renting space in a tiny salon in Chico. I am a Campfire survivor who lost my home and my hometown, and I lost my husband on 4/18/19 to cancer. I am my sole provider and this bill will put me out of business.” #AB5storieshttps://t.co/DDV8466VCD
— Kevin Kiley (@KevinKileyCA) January 10, 2020
But just like with Obama’s lunch rules, the left doesn’t seem to care …
Likewise, the president didn’t seem to care that Friday was the former first lady’s birthday, as he appeared to be too busy trying to improve America’s dysfunctional school lunch programs and showing love to the LSU Tigers.
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