As President Obama presided over a seven-hour cross-party debate on health care last week, First Lady Michelle Obama continued to make headlines in the advancement of her latest cause: childhood obesity.
In an historic appearance at the annual winter meeting of the National Governors Association on February 20, Obama called for a nationwide program to combat obesity in America's children, stressing as she did that such a plan need not be expensive.
Aims of "Let's Move," the name given to the Obama obesity initiative, include a $400 million annual budget to encourage grocery stores to carry healthier food selections, especially grocery stores in "underserved" areas, according to National Public Radio. "Let's Move" will also beef up (pardon the pun) initiatives to offer healthier lunches in schools, and partner with schools in achieving those goals.
It's no secret that being overweight is unhealthy and that obese children tend to grow into obese adults. And with childhood obesity continually on the rise, according to the latest government statistics, it's obvious something needs to be done. But from the minute it left the starting gate, "Let's Move" has endured some hefty criticism.
Salon's Broadsheet didn't like the fact that Obama said her children "weren't perfect" because their Body Mass Index did not conform to their doctor's ideal. Broadsheet also didn't like that Obama used her children as examples, stating that their privacy in this matter deserved to be honored. Others complained about Obama's use of the word chubby, citing the fragile and complicated relationship between descriptive language, body image, and eating disorders.
Issues surrounding weight are difficult to discuss, in part because weight and body image are ...1
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