McDonald's fast food chain restaurants in Australia are reported to be introducing a home delivery service in the near future. This announcement has triggered the familiar media banter or social commentators condemning the proposed action and allowed a platform for heath groups to once again take the opportunity to warn the public about obesity.
Annoyingly, the public debate is focusing on bringing down an "evil" corporation whilst missing the more difficult target of tackling why people are really getting fat (and fatter) in the first place. Unfortunately, much of the media focus and the way these concerns are framed on TV, radio, and online are pushed by people or groups with often a very narrow agenda and one-sided point of view. And, these often loud minority views tend to skew the public discussion down classic "bully and victim" road instead of the "let's all take responsibility" pathway.
I personally don't mind McDonald's occasionally and my kids absolutely love it! However, my children aren't obese because as parents my wife and I ensure our children eat junk food in moderation and get plenty of regular exercise.
Fat people are not victims of fast food chains like McDonald's they are victims of a society who lacks the courage and will to introduce real behaviour changing incentives and proper grassroots education on healthy living.
We kid ourselves everyday expecting advertising campaigns to make a difference when our social change is going in the opposite direction. Parents have less time to cook and "throw a ball" at home because they have to work longer hours to battle the rising cost of living and uncertain employment; fresh food is expensive (especially yummy healthy foods like fruit); and the focus on sports for young people is waning terribly in schools.
But getting back to the introduction of a McDonald's home delivery service, it's hardly going to make a dramatic difference to the obesity epidemic in Australia - if anything it might get a few more vehicles off the road and free up the waiting time at the drive through.
There are dozens of fast food delivery services already anyway and some are arguably worse than McDonald's so I can't see how another fast food home delivery service will change things dramatically.
I think it's admirable that health groups constantly nag us about healthy living and warn the public about the dangers of eating too much junk food (particularly those high carbs) but I also think we need to stop acting like the victim as a society and start targeting the real issues. At the same time, I do believe fast food companies have some obligation to act responsibly and if I'm honest with myself McDonald's does seem to be one of the better corporate citizens with its alternate healthy menus and charity work.
Finally though, what I'd really like to know is... will they be using Big Mack trucks as their delivery vehicles?
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Politics, News, TV, & Radio McDonalds to Start Home Delivery Service - Triggers Obesity Scare
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