The Instigator
smaher1
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
humphreysjim
Con (against)
Winning
15 Points

K-12 schools should ban junk food sales.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
humphreysjim
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/9/2012 Category: Education
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 8,947 times Debate No: 22676
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (2)
Votes (3)

 

smaher1

Pro

Many elementary school, middle school and high school all have vending machines, soda machines that are filled with chips, pretzels, chocolate and caffeine filled drinks. Also the food they sell during lunches are also very unhealthy. All of this is really bad for the students and even the teachers. I believe we should start getting rid of these vending machines, they are not helping out the student with learning better. It will be more beneficial effect on the student if we can get rid of all of them. The population of obesity keeps getting higher and higher every year, and if we take a stand and try to help students while their in school it will help them when they are out of school.
humphreysjim

Con

Hi, thanks for setting up the debate, it should be interesting.

First, I would like to clarify exactly what the debate is about. I am assuming it is purely that "The vending machines should be removed", rather than "Junk food is bad for kids", because the two statements are not necessarily exclusive. One can believe that junk food is unhealthy whilst believing the vending machines should stay, or one can believe that junk food is fine, but still want the vending machines removed for other reasons.

I will be arguing that the vending machines should stay, rather than arguing that junk food is good for kids. My view is that chocolate, sweets and fizzy drinks are not the optimal diet for a child, or indeed anyone, but I will be arguing in favor of keeping the vending machines in school anyway, as they are not only the preferred drinks for most kids in general, but what they are likely to be most used to drinking outside of school. That's why they're there in the first place - they're what kids want, and what kids like, therefore they make money.

The decision to force kids to abstain from what they prefer dietary wise should be the decision of the parents alone, not the school.

In support of the keeping the vending machines I will offer the following additional points:

1) School is not just a place of learning, it is a place of preparation. Kids are essentially being given the skills needed to survive and thrive in the real world. The real world contains vending machines - lots of them. By being exposed to things that exist in the real world, they can be taught how to make dietary decisions wisely.

2) Children are rebellious. If you prevent them access to the foods and drinks they enjoy, not only are they likely to get these things elsewhere, perhaps in a less controlled manner, but they are likely to resent you for violating their sense of freedom.

In a recent case here in England, a student was banned because he was making about $50 a day selling fizzy drinks in a school that had banned them. He bought them in bulk outside of school, and sold them in secret in the playground. Funny how school often mirrors the real world, isn't it. Echoes of the war on drugs, perhaps.

Children are just younger less learned versions of adults after all, and we should be careful not to treat them as a different species entirely. We don't ban vending machines in the real world, or the adult workplace, so we need a good reason to do so in schools, and I don't think great reasons exist.

Even if such a student did not exist, more children would leave school premises at lunch times and buy sweets from local shops.

3) Vending machine foods and drinks while not optimal, are not particularly harmful. The machines usually contain mineral water for kids who wish to drink healthily, and for the others, the fizzy drinks are a nice reward for the children.

Is your plan to ban fizzy drinks altogether, or only remove the vending machines? Should we check lunches to make sure there are no sweets, or foods we deem "not healthy enough"?

As for the obesity epidemic, I do not agree that fizzy drinks in schools are a significant part of that problem.
Debate Round No. 1
smaher1

Pro

This debate is about how I believe we should remove vending machines and the junk food they sell in the lunch room because it is unhealthy. The vending machines should be filled with healthy snacks and bars, the drinking machines can be filled with waters, gatorades, vitamin drinks or protein drinks. They can still make money off of the vending machine but the kids will also being get a plus side to the new change also.

If we make a change at school where kids are at for at least 8 hours a day, five days a week then they can still making a change when they are at home for the rest of the hours. Giving out healthy balanced meals at school will help the kids to stop wanting to eat foods like french fries, chicken patties, cookies and other junk food like that.

I don't believe students should be able to drink fizzy drinks during school, the lunches should we checked to make sure it is healthy enough for students.
humphreysjim

Con

Hmmm. Removing vending machines and replacing the foods in them with healthier options are different things entirely, so in my opinion you're deviating from your side of the debate a little by making that suggestion. It's not a terrible idea of course, I would welcome it, but that would seem to be a concession on your part because the vending machines would stay, which is what I'm supposed to be arguing for! :)

Let's stick with the "banning fizzy drinks" argument, because I don't agree with that part at least.

Studies show that caffeine, rather than being really bad for the children's learning process, can actually benefit them in a few important ways, in memory, concentration and energy.

An example:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov...

I think you have a way to go to justify the removal of fizzy drinks.

As for checking lunches, who gets to decide what is "healthy enough"? The idea does not seem workable, and forcing children to eat certain foods and drinks is not the way to go.

"Giving out healthy balanced meals at school will help the kids to stop wanting to eat foods like french fries, chicken patties, cookies and other junk food like that."

I don't agree with this at all, if anything once they leave a place where these things are banned the first thing they are going to buy at their local shop is fizzy drinks and sweets. Healthier food alternatives are not a bad idea, but again, these subjects should be up to the parents and the children in secondary schools are certainly old enough to have a say in their dietary choices too. By all means give children healthy options, but banning the foods they like is going to cause far more problems than it solves.
Debate Round No. 2
smaher1

Pro

Poor eating habits developed at an early age that lead to a unhealthy lifestyle which can lead to real health consequences. School is where the children spend most of their time at, and if we change the way they eat at school it could help them to do the same when they are out or at home.

As the role of the government because Nearly 300,000 people die each year from complications associated with being obese or overweight. They should take the role to help solve these problems, starting with children at school. As the government they have an responsibility to help our society to promote good nutrition and healthy eating so we can try to stop children to becoming obese.
humphreysjim

Con

Sorry, but you seem to be repeating what has already been said.

You have not shown that fizzy drinks at school lead to obesity, or that forcibly preventing students from drinking them is a viable solution to that problem. You have also not shown that any of these ideas are workable, or that they are ample compensation for the problems your suggestion will cause.

You have also failed to address the learning advantages of caffeine intake, with memory and concentration improvement, or shown that the converse is true, that it interferes with the child's ability to learn.

I do not think you have made your case here.
Debate Round No. 3
smaher1

Pro

Regular soda consumption significantly increases a person's risk of obesity, according to a study conducted by researchers from the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA).

"We drink soda like water," said Harold Goldstein of the Center for Public Health Advocacy, which also took part in the study. "But unlike water, soda serves up a whopping 17 teaspoons of sugar in every 20-ounce serving."

Soda has a lot of caffeine in it even though it tends to wake up the body, which makes you more alert. Drinking large amounts of caffeine can cause nervousness, sweating, testiness, upset stomach, anxiety and insomnia. With all of the sugar in the drink it can make you hyperactive and can cause fuzzy thinking.
humphreysjim

Con

I am not denying that fizzy drinks have more calories than water, but so does orange juice! So does a piece of healthy fruit.

At the very best due to its caloric content fizzy drinks could be considered a very small contributing factor to obesity. Do you know what the biggest contributing factor is? Food! ;)

To put it more precisely, excess is the problem. Banning fizzy drinks does not stop the problem of excess, it merely forces children to comply rather than teach them to be responsible about their own dietary habits. Once they are out of school, those restrictions disappear, and the bad habits of excess return in abundance.

It reminds me a little bit about the problem of teen pregnancy. The biggest cause of teen pregnancy is contact with boys, very close contact. By your reasoning, we should segregate the schools and separate the girls from the boys. That would cause less teen pregnancy, wouldn't it? Or would it make it even more desirable to seek the company of boys once school ends? I suspect the latter, but in either case, teaching the kids about sex is a far better method than banning boys, as boys, like caffeine sodas, are fine when approached sensibly, without excess, and the understanding of correct behavior at the correct time.

As for the effects of caffeine, if caffeine and sugar were as bad as you make it sound, we should ban the substances altogether! I strongly doubt that is the case, and as a childhood fizzy drink consumer myself, I can say none of those adverse affects were present in me in noticeable or significant degrees.
Debate Round No. 4
smaher1

Pro

I agree with the fact segregate in your example of banning boys and girls from being in the same high school. I just believe if we try to make a stand and get rid of the fats and bad drinks we could help children learn at a young age to limit themselves to these types of food. Then that can help them when they get older to stay away because it's bad for you and very unhealthy with all of the calories and sugar it has in them.

Doing this is just an important step closer to tackling the nation's childhood obesity epidemic. By setting standards for the food and drinks that is served and sold in cafeterias and vending machines, we can make sure our children have the opportunity for a healthy start in their young life.
humphreysjim

Con

Well, I guess this round is for some kind of conclusion, but I don't really have anything to add that has not already been said. I will let the case I mapped out in earlier rounds speak for itself, and I thank you for the debate.
Debate Round No. 5
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by dirtbiker247 3 years ago
dirtbiker247
hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha
Posted by MontGBuer 4 years ago
MontGBuer
Fats are healthy for people. Whats dangerous in fact is to take it all out of everything. Same goes with calories.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by seraine 4 years ago
seraine
smaher1humphreysjimTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con was the only one who used sources, and the only thing Pro really said was that they were unhealthy. However, that doesn't mean kids won't look for drinks elsewhere, or that it shouldn't be the parents decision.
Vote Placed by RacH3ll3 4 years ago
RacH3ll3
smaher1humphreysjimTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con used more sources. Good job to both of you! But I don't think taking away junk food will stop the kids from eating junk food, like con said.
Vote Placed by lannan13 4 years ago
lannan13
smaher1humphreysjimTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con tripped at the begining but picked him self up. He's the only one who used a source so that goes to him. He get's arguements because he used real word senarios and he had most of his arguements unrefuted.