Obesity Will Soon Cost U.S. $344 Billion a Year

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11.28.09

The problem requires approaches on many fronts… Whether in food or media consumption, consumer behavior is closely managed by industry merchandisers. These are powerful and necessary engines of our economy. However, like the tobacco industry, governments acting for the common good should have a role in regulation and mounting public health campaigns akin to the anti-smoking, drunk driving, gambling, ada, drug abuse, breast cancer awareness, etc. that have made important differences.

I believe that government control should be limited. The argument that obesity is a result of illnesses or addictions is not trivial, and should be considered seriously.

But consumers who choose to abuse their health should somehow shoulder more of the burden they cause — pay back their share back to public or somehow pay more for insurance so that all of us do not have to pay for risks they take. Possibly in the form of consumption taxes (as alcohol, tobacco, vehicle use, etc.)

There are some vulnerable groups that would benefit from coordination of government, industry, and public health agencies and self-help groups. Child advocates and educators are also stakeholders that need to coordinate their efforts and look at this issue through the lens of childhood and the family. School-based campaigns akin to drug abuse, health, home ec, and sex education need development to target future generations. Private social service and government health services to the underclasses, should be intensified for this vulnerable group too.

Technology, Properly Used, Can Be Embraced and Its Power Channeled, Not Be Feared

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11.24.09

We have a long way to go, especially in our own homes: Negative thinking has limited our approach to mostly monitoring, filtering and restricting. If we begin thinking positively and asking, how can we make the best use of these technologies?, we can start learning and guiding our kids towards the great potential of these tools to do good.

The time has come to raise our kids from the very beginning on good media diets that are part of healthy family life and give a foundation for continued healthy interactions with technology — no matter how it keeps changing — in later childhood, the teen years, and beyond.

DIGITAL MEDIA CAN BE DANGEROUS WEAPONS IN KIDS’ HANDS

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11.23.09

In the wrong hands, they can be loaded guns. This recent redhead- bashing episode, again demonstrates how out-of -control kids can injure and become injured when they have powerful media in their hands and parents stay unaware. Kids need media diets created by parents to truly reap the wonderful benefits of digital technology, stop this type of bullying, and move away from consuming and producing digital junk. In some ways, these digital gadgets are more powerful appliances than the family car!

Red Headed Boy Attacked: Police Probe Tie To ‘Kick A Ginger Day’ Message

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11.23.09

KIDS PLAYING WITH DIGITAL MEDIA CAN DO REAL HARM: This is another sad episode that illustrates the power of digital media to be a loaded gun. Parents should be more in charge and make media-saturated kids stop consuming and creating harmful media junk. Parents should guide kids in the proper and beneficial uses of media.