The Reason We're Fat, Lazy, and Going Bankrupt

Not all of those adjectives describe the average American, but it sure does sound good, doesn't it? The image of that fat kid in my post about the McRib is... Disturbing, to say the least. I remember playing around with my dad at that age, wrestling him (and losing). If my kid was that big, I'd still lose. If I didn't know better, I'd say that kid was a sumo-in-training. All he needs to do is learn how to wear a cloth diaper that barely covers his nether region and toss some rice in a ceremonial fashion. It would be great if that kid was a small, relatively speaking, percentage of kids in the US, but since I live in the fattest city in America I see a lot of kids like that.

There is plenty of data out there to help give rhyme and reason to this expanding population. (Get it? It's got a dual meaning!) It just frustrates me when these reasons tend to swing closer to the answer that, "It's genetic." Hey, that's a great excuse for the adults to use when they'd prefer to blame it on something other than the fact that they eat poorly and enjoy sitting on their ass watching celebrities looking thin and fit. But then the same excuse gets passed on to their kids and instead of it being a motivational deficiency, it's an issue of a protein that they lack or a metabolism that refuses to work as well as others.

Dennis Leary, the comedian and not the drug-crazed loon, recently wrote a book titled, "Why We Suck." That's a classic literary title if I've ever heard one. His book discusses many of the same issues, and has probably been a catalyst for what I'm writing at the moment. He points out all of the shortcuts that we choose to take to remove blame from ourselves and onto other people or handicaps that we don't actually have. One example he gave was the pressure that parents put on doctors to diagnose them as ADD or hyperactive, when in fact they were never taught how to sit still by their parents who left the raising of their child to a third-party, such as a nanny or daycare. Now this kid has trouble performing in school and instead of spending time with the kids to catch them up with the rest of the class, they slap a "special" label on them that they'll most likely carry for the rest of their lives and use as an excuse when they get older themselves.

So these kids get lazy and create a reality where it's always the fault of some other person or amino acid chain. Then the rest of the world leaves them behind because they're really nothing more than a waste of space. Oh my gosh! Did I just link this epidemic to the American Auto Industry and our failing economy? You're damn right I did! This expanding waist line and national debt isn't a recent phenomena. It's been building for a long time.

I wonder what would happen if the countries that the USA have been borrowing from suddenly asked for the money back? (I'm aware that they won't, because they know we don't have $11 trillion lying around.) Maybe the country would be divided up into territories and all those living in a territory would become an indentured servant working off the payments? Which protein or vitamin deficiency would we point the finger at then? Is "stupid" a protein, bacteria, or virus?

Next time I see a line of cars waiting at an elementary school filled with parents who have nothing better to do than sit there waiting for their kids instead of having them ride the bus, I'll walk up to each one and start handing out some patterns for tennis shoes and tell them to start practicing their cross-stitch. They're going to have to get those fingers ready for when we start working the sweatshop circuit.

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