Give Me Liberty


Our nation’s youth are up in arms, not to mention just plain hungry, over the new federal guidelines that regulate the kinds and amounts of foods school cafeterias can provide for students.

I first wrote about this way back in August, 2010, in Tin Ear, before the bill was even passed. My focus then was on a different issue. Then I was upset that President Obama was going to take money from the Food Stamp program to help pay for this new initiative. I did not think it was a good idea to take money from Food Stamps while we are still in a deep recession and so many are unemployed and rely on food stamps to put food on the table.

Of course, at the time the goal of this new law, Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, was to just put more fruit and vegetables into school cafeterias. Or at least that is what I thought.

As always the details are in the fine print.


Not content to juts have more fruits and vegetables available for children who want them or to encourage them to eat more, this new law micromanages almost every aspect of school cafeterias from the exact number of ounces  of turkey that can be placed on a turkey sandwich to proscribing the exact dimensions of a slice of bread.

You would have thought these people would have learned the lessons of Prohibition!

That is, you simply cannot force a free people to eat or drink what you think they should. People will always find a way around prohibitions.


Worse yet, students are not allowed to say no to what is put on their food tray. THEY ARE FORCED TO TAKE IT.

Thank God no one is forcing them to eat it.



Because children are not permited to say, “No thank you,” a lot of food is also being thrown away. Just plain wasted!

Food is being thrown away in our schools while millions of out of work people are on food stamps, rely on food banks, and still come up short on food by the end of the month.

To make matters even worse there is an issue with portion size. You see, there are also limits placed on the amount of calories that can be served at lunch:

K-5th grade 650 calories

Middle school 700 calories

High school 850 calories.

Children are complaining of being hungry by 2 p.m. One child said he was ready to eat his pencil by mid-afternoon.

And what about students who come from very poor homes? Many times school lunch is the only decent meal these children get. So now we limit this meal to 850 calories or less?

It is worse for athletes whose intense workouts burn up 850 calories in short time.

Simply put, a one-size-fits-all approach with regard to calories is just plain stupid.


Now here is a winning combination for you: higher costs for less food.

The new healthier foods are costing students and parents twenty to twenty-five cents more per day. Again this is hitting families hardest who are most vulnerable due to the poor economy and lost jobs. This is just plain madness!!!


Parents have taken to sending a brown bag to school with their children to supplement the meager lunches.

I read that students in some states are thinking about striking.

Some enterprising students have started Black Markets  for chocolate syrup. “The kiddie capitalists are smuggling in bottles of it and selling it by the squeeze, according to” and via

Some students have even taken to protesting on Twitter.

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette By Annie Siebert 

A boy using the Twitter handle @TornadoBoyTubbs tweeted, “everyone.. if you agree school lunches are expensive and small, RT this. we can fight the school! tweet #BrownBagginIt.”


I am a strong believer of freedom and choice. Not only do I believe in it, it is my right as an American citizen. I believe in personal responsibility. I believe in free will.

Should the federal government (or even state and local governments) be in the business of telling a free people what they can or can’t eat?

Doesn’t the federal government have better things to do like maybe reducing the national debt to a more acceptable level? Or maybe keep us and our overseas personnel safe from terrorists? Or perhaps save the average citizen from the banking and financial predators among us?

I think C.K. Chesterson says it best:

“The free man owns himself. He can damage himself with either eating or drinking; he can ruin himself with gambling. If he does he is certainly a damn fool, and he might possibly be a damned soul; but if he may not, he is not a free man any more than a dog.”

Give me liberty or give me death!


Featured Recipe             Frozen Yogurt Dots

These were all the rage a couple of summers ago on the internets. They are easy to make and fun to eat. It is a different way to enjoy yogurt. They are a healthy indulgence.

There is no real cooking either.

You can make any flavor or color that you want and like. Match the color to a holiday or school colors.

They are good mixed in with fresh fruit for breakfast, or throw them on top of an ice cream sundae. Throw them onto your cereal in the morning and let them just begin to melt before you start eating.

The only real problem I have with them is they melt too fast. So only bring a few out of the freezer at a time. I have tried making them bigger, but they still melt, just not as fast.

You just have to eat them right away.

For best results it is best to freeze them at least 24 hours.

I have also noticed that some flavors are softer or runnier than others. Some thicker. The thicker the yogurt the easier it is to make the dots. I seem to make flats with the softer yogurt.

But then again, what else can you expect from someone who flunked scissor cutting in 5th grade?

But play around with it and see what works best for you.

This is what you will need for about 30-35 dots:

2 cartons of yogurt of your choice. I used peach and key lime pie.

This is what you do:

Place some waxed paper on a baking sheet.

Place a small plastic baggie in a measuring or similar cup. Spoon the yogurt into the baggie.

NOTE: If you choose a yogurt with fruit in it, dig as much of the little chunks of fruit out first; otherwise the fruit will plug up the hole in the plastic baggie.

Cut a small tip off the corner of the baggie.

Squeeze dots of yogurt onto the waxed paper. You can make the dots big or small. I made both.

Place them in the freezer for at least 24 hours.

Serve. Eat them like candy wafers or using one of the ideas above, or anyway you want.

Bon appétit!!!


2 cartons of yogurt  $1.40

Total cost = $1.40

Cost per dot = $0.05

Quote of the Day

Hey! Another round of strawberry for me and my friends!

Newman, in “The Non-Fat Yogurt” episode of Seinfeld


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4 comments to Give Me Liberty

  • I do understand that obesity in children is reaching epidemic proportions but surely there’s a better way than using a “stick” like this. Yes, kids should eat well but not all kids should eat the same number of calories.

    My 220 pound center on the high school football team would have been very upset and he and his other linemen would have brought bag lunches to school for sure.

    Love the dots 🙂

    • Roberta

      Exactly, Maureen. If I have learned one thing in life it is that one size does not fit all! That and you can’t force people either. Plus it all starts and ends in the home.

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