I really am not channeling Dave Barry. I’m just not making this up.

An article from Financial Times leads with this paragraph:

A US consumer advocacy group has filed a lawsuit against McDonald’s, accusing the fast-food chain of using deceptive advertising practices to lure children to the company’s restaurants.

Who are these children able to get themselves to a McDonald’s and who have the money to purchase themselves a meal (with or without a toy included)? Are we talking about 16-year-olds? If it is anyone younger than that, what in the name of all that’s holy are we doing?

Parents: it is up to you to determine what is good, bad, or indifferent for your children. If there is something advertised and you don’t want your children to have it, there is this word that is available in the English language. You may need some practice saying it, but here it goes.

Repeat after me.


That’s it. That’s all you have to do, say no.

Oh, I hear you.

You: But my little snowflake will not like it if I say no.

Me: Tough. You are the parent and it is up to you to teach your children that they can’t have everything they want. Some things are simply not to be.

You: But they might not like me.

Me: So? They will get over it. They will learn to like you later.

And we could go on forever with You telling Me why you haven’t got the balls to tell your kids no and Me telling You to grow a pair. It is your job as the driver and as the person with the wallet to make these choices.

My children will attest to the fact that they didn’t get everything they wanted. They did get to hear, way too many times, “We all have wants and needs that are unfulfilled.” They didn’t particularly care to hear it, but if they whined after the NO was given, that’s what they got next.

And my children didn’t think it was fair. And they told me about other people who had better parents and what they got to do or have or be. And I was not swayed. It was my job to teach them the meaning of various words and one of my favorite was the small but utile word – NO.

When did parents give up all their power?

One of the other things I said quite often to my sons was, “I waited 22 years to be the boss. It’s my turn now. You want to be the boss? Have kids of your own.” They now both have kids of their own. I sure hope they are not wasting this chance to be the boss. I sincerely hope they have the intestinal fortitude to teach their children one of the most important words in the language. No.

As in, this should not be a lawsuit you spineless wimps. If you don’t want your kids eating McDonald’s garbage, don’t take them there.