I am wondering if the alleged obesity crisis is all down to docility? There is a pervading air of, "What's the point?" that stalks society today. At a micro level it translates into, "Why would I bother because it doesn't make any difference?"
A report from the 'Lanclet' this morning is widely reported here. We're as fat as pancakes apparently and how we manage to struggle all the way to McDonalds is a mystery to modern medical science. We are all big bloated dopey fuckers wandering around like zombies waiting to die of some preventable disease or other caused by being big lazy fat fuckers. So what's going on? Calories in versus calories out has always been the natural way of things and unless mankind has evolved into some other sort of being, that is still the way of things. You eat it, you work it off and if you don't, it turns to fat. Call it one of nature's unfortunate equations.
I heard Professor Donal O'Shea on the radio this morning expertly rabbiting on about the obesity epidemic but then, he would wouldn't he. It's his speciality after all. As an American General once put it, "When the only tool you have is a hammer, then every problem must look like a nail." If you specialize in obesity, everyone looks fat." I have found that with the phobic anti-smoking racketeers in another context. But I met Prof. Donal and I can truly say, the lad is sincere and well-meaning. However, well-meaning though he is, does it mean he's always right.
Needless to say the bold Donal is seeking more funding to fight the epidemic of physical bigness and you'd have to say about that too, "Well he would wouldn't he." But if he gets the public funding, what is the man going to do? Will he take on the risk averse culture that prohibits children from playing in a school yard? Will he go nose-to-nose with the busybodies who would deny the benefits of contact sports? Or will the fucker demand a new tax on sugar and retire on the ring-fenced funding the extra revenue provides him? What do you think the genuine Prof. will do? Does the path of least resistance beckon for the brother of the new manager of the Italian Rugby team?
To return to my suggestion of docility though, I sense there is little get-up-and-go in the younger generation and that could be the core problem. When I were a lad we used to have times of tremendous exuberance where we would shout, dance, jump and go mad. I look back now and visualize millions of fat calories evaporating into space as a multitude of little energy molecules. It was all of last week's meals gone in a matter of minutes. We used to run half a mile chasing the bus that would take us the other three miles home and used to do that tearing down busy city streets as well. That is probably now a major legal violation of some kind that could see you arrested by public health.
So it is easier and more peaceful today for our youth to sit themselves in front of a screen, be it a computer, TV or phone, and snack to their heart's content. The human stomach is a muscle and if you stretch it often enough it takes more filling to satisfy it. The heavier you get as a result, the less likely you are to get up and go. Worse still, if your world shrinks to a virtual world of screens, you don't even want to go anywhere and you certainly won't have the urge to take a risk of any kind. The joy of experiencing the great outdoors is satisfied instead by watching the great outdoors on screens from the comfort and safety of your own home. It is a veritable recipe for piling on the pounds.
Meanwhile, public health applauds them for being safe and secure while also chiding and penalising them for putting on those extra pounds until they eventually shame them by labeling them as obese. That's a horrible word and it has connotations of smelly and useless attached to it too. Is it any wonder then that so many of our young surrender and become docile? I mean, what's the point?