Eat What They Want You To Eat

Categories: (Un)sound Bites
prohibition.jpg
The old progressives made us dump liquor. The new ones want us to heed their diet demands.
Now, you all know I'm the kindhearted, gentle sort, right? That I would never write anything harsh about mindless poseurs ordering dirty martinis or suggest a certain rank dish should be dumped over the offending chef's head?

Never ever.

So it may surprise you that I consider Boston Globe columnist Ellen Goodman a...well, best not to use those words in print. Let's just say her 2001 piece calling for a new national anthem almost sent me into a Bobby Knight-worthy tantrum. She considers the lyrics warlike, obviously failing to comprehend what is happening in the song.

This weekend she succumbed to the message of America's new 'food progressives.'

Now, progressive is generally a positive word. But I mean it in the sense of America's progressive movement in the late 19th-early 20th centuries--the one that brought us Prohibition. Food progressives, in other words, seek to control how and what we eat.

Like the original progressives, they start with good intentions--in this case hoping to make the citizens of this country healthier. But they are taken in by faddists (the raw foods thing, for example), shrill lunatics (Center for Science in the Public Interest) and the growing mass of local-seasonal proponents stirred by Fast Food Nation, Food, Inc. and the like.

Of course the big corporations are manipulating supply and demand for foods without our best interests necessarily in mind. Certainly vegetables grown the old-fashioned way and served fresh, in season taste so much better than those things in grocery bins. And obviously most diners who profess a love for local-seasonal-sustainable are not part of this 'progressive' movement. They just like good food.

What bothers me are the pushy sorts.

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