When we pre-boomers were growing up almost every kid loved a peanut butter sandwich. We liked them with jelly, sometimes with marshmallow fluff, even with bananas, potato chips, bacon or whatever else we decided to smoosh in between two slices of white bread.
Now, there’s talk of banning youngsters from bringing a peanut butter sandwich in their school lunch bag for fear of causing those who are allergic peanuts to become deathly ill. There are already restrictions from selling products containing peanuts in schools and other public facilities. Remember, a few years back, when airlines switched from offering free bags of peanuts to pretzels? Of course, thanks to the mcm handbags airlines’ cost cutting programs, even the free pretzels are gone.
What happened to cause this peanut pandemic? The number of children allergic to peanuts doubled from .04% in 1997 to .08% in 2002, which caused concerned mothers, doctors, and some journalists to sound the alarm and demand a ban on peanuts and byproducts. What these well-meaning people did not mention was: 1) the study did mcm belts not include allergy tests so the results are inconclusive, 2) peanut dust, due to the roasting process, is the airborne carrier, not peanut butter, and 3) more people die in this country from lightening strikes than from peanut allergies, about 100 to 150 including adults. But activist groups are hard at work to eliminate peanut butter from schools.
I’m truly sorry for those children who have food, and other allergies. I suffered from an allergy to Poison Ivy until I was twelve, so I couldn’t go camping like the other kids. That’s the way the peanut scare should be handled. Keep the children away from the problem, but don’t cause a problem for the rest of the kids. If less than 1% of the school mcm backpacks population has an allergy, don’t penalize the other students. Simply make the teachers aware of those who have the problem, don’t allow them to share food, and be sure the child knows how to recognize when an attack is starting.
For the remaining 99% of the kids, let them enjoy their peanut butter sandwiches. And, when your grandchildren come to your house for lunch, don’t make them eat the organic stuff on whole-wheat bread with the crust cut off. Let ’em enjoy their sandwich the way we pre-boomers did: Skippy peanut butter on Wonder Bread and a glass of real milk. That’s delicious.
Don Potter, a Philadelphia native, was born in 1936 and is a 50 year veteran of the advertising agency business. Now living in Los Angeles, he has written two novels in retirement, frequently writes on marketing issues, and has a blog dedicated to pre-boomers (those born between 1930 and 1945).