The recent banning of fast food toys has been a pretty hot topic in our house. I had written a post about the ban and how I felt about it (which, for the record I am in support of) and last week my husband and I were chatting about the ban while we were all sitting down to dinner. My son was listening intently, and after having heard us moms chattering on about it at school and now mom and dad, he was forming his own thoughts on the whole thing.
We do eat at McDonald’s. It’s only been recently that I’ve finally tried to abandon our trips to McDonald’s all together. So it was a kind of tricky moment at the dinner table trying to explain to my 7 year old why I thought it was a good idea to ban the toys. My son considered this for a moment.
Finally I asked him what he thought of it. I mean here is a7 year old boy with a toy chest full of McDonald’s toys. He is the one who would be most affected by this ban (if it were to happen on our side of the hill), so I was curious.
“I feel bad for the poor kids.” Poor kids? I asked him what he meant. He explained to my husband and I that there are a lot families who can’t afford to go out to dinner a lot. And they can never afford new toys. But sometimes they can go to McDonald’s. They get to go out to dinner AND get a new toy. How can that be bad?
His big blues eyes looked up at us and he spoke in a quiet tone. He really meant what he was saying. My heart grew about 20 sizes right then and there.
Now, my son’s argument isn’t going necessarily to change the way I feel about the ban. But it was the only argument I heard that made me stop and think a little bit more about it.
We don’t always have a way to gauge the kind of job we’re doing as parents. But sometimes, our children will open up their mouth to speak and say something that makes us, if even for just a moment, think, “Yea, we’re doing OK.”
This is an original post to the Silicon Valley Moms Blog.