Thursday, June 20, 2013

The PBJ Fallacy

I have been told by several adults in different locations, under different circumstances that "we can't eliminate peanut butter (from our event) because its the only thing kids eat."

That's not true. While the PBJ is a favorite for some kids, it is usually not, and should not be the only thing they will eat.

In fact, most of the kids I have encountered understand food allergies quite well. They see it at school, at camp, at extracurricular activities. They know that peanuts can hurt or kill some of their friends, classmates, teachers, etc. And they are willing to forgo that food in public areas and/or in the presence of an allergic person.

To be honest, its not all adults. I've noticed that the culprits usually seem to be between the ages of 50 and 75. Maybe its a generational thing? I want to believe that they truly don't understand, but the message they are sending is that a picky child having to make a different meal choice far outweighs my personal safety.

Yes, children can be picky eaters. To be fair, we are born with all the taste buds we will ever have. And as we age, they slowly die off. So flavors are much stronger to children. Its only fair that many of them don't like some of the more potent foods. However, it is very rare to have a child that will only eat one thing. And if that is the case, shouldn't we be challenging that child anyway? They certainly cannot be getting all the nutrition they need from a single food item for months on end.

When hosting public events, its time to start considering safety and inclusion first. There are plenty of safe "kid-friendly" foods.

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