There are so many things with which to criticize the current crop of politicians, the list would be a lengthy one.
Partisan bickering. Campaign mud-slinging. Shameless money-grubbing by both parties to fund ridiculously expensive election battles.
Not to mention the apparent lack of political will from either party to tackle a raft of urgent challenges facing the nation.
But of all things to dredge up, the latest attack by the veggie activists at the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is as silly, ill-conceived and off-message as it’s possible to be.
The deep thinkers at PCRM, a thinly disguised, wholly owned subsidiary of PETA, managed to get USA Today to print the following headline: “Doctors to Obama: Stop eating unhealthy foods at photo ops”
The story then noted that, “A group of doctors want President Obama to cut out the cheeseburgers and hot dogs,” and was accompanied by a photo of Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron at a NCAA March Madness college basketball game eating a couple of hot dogs.
Of course, to the PETA and PCRM leadership, a hot dog is a tool of Satan that is destroying the world’s health, wellness and sanity, so one can only imagine their anguish at seeing the leaders of the two countries chowing down at the game.
But it wasn’t a “photo op,” which is a staged event where the operatives running somebody’s campaign arrange for the candidate to take a token bite of some local delicacy near and dear to the partisans of that town, city or state. If you’re down South, you’re eating barbecue. If you’re in the City of Brotherly Love, you’re biting into a Philly cheesesteak. And so on.
Normally, the candidate doesn’t actually eat an entire serving; just enough to show the locals that he or she is one of them, and just long enough for the photographers and videocams to capture the moment for later public consumption.
Unless your name is Bill Clinton, you don’t actually live on the various delicacies and specialties proffered on the campaign trail. It’s all for show, not for subsistence.
Not to the publicity mongers at PCRM, however.
According to the news story, they plan to file a Petition for Executive Action (whatever that is) tomorrow calling for “An executive order banning staged official photo ops that depict the president, the first family, the vice president and members of the president’s Cabinet with unhealthful foods, including processed meats that can cause cancer and obesity.”