Yes, friends!!! Touchy Topic Tuesday is back by popular demand!
Many weeks ago, one of my wonderful readers requested that I do a specific TTT as she was wondering about my feelings on the matter. So, today, I'll be covering Peanuts In Schools. Also, I'd really like to invite anyone who has a great touchy topic for my (in)famous Tuesdays to drop me a message or email! I can only be just so snarky on my own. I'm going to need some ideas soon!
So, here we go!!!
Touchy Topic Tuesday: Peanuts in Schools
Everywhere you turn, if you're like me, you're hearing more and more about peanut allergies. It used to be believed that eating certain foods while pregnant or breast feeding could help a child avoid an allergy. Now-a-days, pregnant and nursing women are cautioned to eat such things as strawberries and peanuts sparingly so as not to CAUSE them.
Yes, the peanut allergy has become a terrifying thought to many a new mother, and, she may add it to a growing list of fears and things to be guilty about. As a result of the growing epidemic of peanut allergies, schools around the country are banning peanuts and peanut products from schools altogether.
This means no peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, no nutty bars in the lunch boxes, no Reese's peanut butter cups on Halloween, or peanut M&M's. Absolutely NO peanuts.
For some, this is a controversial matter.
Luckily I have never had a child with a peanut allergy, and I am not yet sure if Lilly's school is a "Peanut Aware School", but if it is, I will be perfectly fine with this. Yes, it will take a bit more thought, but let me explain.
There are many many things that kids can be allergic to. Strawberries and cheese/dairy are some very common ones, and I have known several parents of allergic children. There was/is a decent mix of parents who either refused to let their child participate in activities where there happened to be a food containing their allergy, and those parents who taught their children that though, throughout life, the foods that they weren't able to handle would be around, they needed to avoid them on their own.
For the most part, I would ignore the parents who treated their children like a fragile set of precious china, with nothing more than a sarcastic thought, and admired the parents who taught their children how to handle real life situations. After all, a child will grow up. And an office or a spouse's family at a holiday dinner is not going to cater to an adult, who, like the over protected child they were, cannot handle cheese or strawberries or any other number of foods on a table. (Yes, I do actually know adults like this too. You'd be amazed and impressed at how much more childish an adult can be than an actual child.) Not to mention, it kind of knocks out a heck of a lot of great Mexican restaurants if you refuse to be anywhere near cheese.
I think, for the most part, it's very important to teach children how to deal with things that are going to stare them in the face their whole lives. Including foods that they may be allergic to. I think it would be positively ridiculous to ban such things at cheese or milk or strawberries.
However, if a child who was allergic to dairy were sitting next to a kid who had cheese cubes in his lunch, his life would in no way be threatened. Even if he ATE a cheese cube, he'd have a bad bout of diarrhea or severe constipation, and then be right as rain once it was out of his system. If a child who was allergic to peanuts were sitting next to a child with a peanut butter sandwich, that child could easily slip into shock simply by touching them. Eating them isn't even necessary.
I feel that, because peanuts actually pose not just a health risk, but threaten lives, that a school's choice to keep them out altogether is justified. If it were MY child, I would like every precaution to be taken to protect their lives. And since the allergy to peanuts seems to be growing, I want to protect other people's children too.
BUT...that doesn't mean they can stop me from eating this:
Let us all know what YOU think about schools banning peanuts!!! Not only do I love to debate, I LOVE comments. So bring 'em on! Tell us how you feel!