April 08, 2005

Fruit & Vegetable Monster?

So Scott Kurtz seems pissed about Sesame Street introducing a healthy aspect to the show, specifically through our beloved Cookie Monster. To me the bottom line is that things change. Sometimes things we grew up with don't work for the modern era and you've got to make appropriate changes.

The gist is that Sesame Street looked at the alarming rates of childhood obesity and decided that having a character that mindlessly shoves his face with cookies couldn’t be helping. This isn’t to say that they’re getting rid of Cookie Monster or turning him into some whole-grain-only vegan. What they are introducing is the concepts of “anytime food” and “sometimes food.” Though I cringe to quote Bill Frist, he put it pretty well, “Even Cookie Monster is learning to control his cookie cravings. His sage advice opened our eyes to the simple joys of a tasty cookie and now reminds us that moderation is the key to healthy living."

To sum it up :

“The furry one also plans to try different kinds of cookies (read: healthier cookies) rather than his just staple, chocolate chip.

But will he still scarf his food? Yes, plus the occasional object, Truglio said.

But isn't that unhealthy? Her reply: He's still Cookie Monster.”

He's the Cookie Monster for the 21st Century Scott, what's wrong with that?

Update: Kurtz has a new strip up dealing with this "problem". As is common on the internet, Kurtz seems to think that the only issue of importance is parenting. What he fails to realize is that parents can do the best job in the world and kids will still be influenced by outside factors including their teachers, friends, and yes entertainment. Parents should absolutely be involved in teaching their kids good habbits, but that doesn't mean that educational programs shouldn't think twice about telling kids to scarf down plateful after plateful of sweets. Responsibility isn't just for parents.

And really does Kurtz honestly want us to believe there should be no difference between characters on an educational program on PBS and the corporate cartoon mascots of sugar cereals?


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