3Nebraska's "Give Us Your Troubled Child" Law Somehow Backfires
"Safe haven" laws are nothing new, they just say that a parent can drop their infant child off at any hospital with no questions asked, if for some reason they feel they are not fit to care for the child. They are often referred to as "Baby Moses Laws" after the ancient story of Baby Moses being left in a wicker basket hidden in tall grass to keep him from being slain by the Israelites. The current safe haven laws are in place for the exact same reason, except these days the "Israelites" are called "shitty moms who throw their kids in dumpsters," as adorably depicted in the photo below.
It really is a noble program, and has probably saved countless infants from an unnecessary and cruel demise. The operative word there being "infants."
In most states, safe haven laws have an age limit of anywhere from 30 to 60 days. That's why, although they've been around for some time, most safe haven laws don't cause a multiple episodes of Dr. Phil generating a shit storm of outrage. Not so with the Nebraska Safe Haven law. The problems with the Nebraska version of safe haven began pretty much the minute some dipshit decided that including an age limit wasn't really necessary. Technically, under the original version of the Nebraska Safe Haven law, any child could be dropped off by their parents and the state had to take them in.
"My mom says she can't take care of me anymore. Can I have a beer?"
This fact was not lost on scores negligent parents, who suddenly began arriving from as far away as Florida to drop off their ill-mannered and mentally troubled youngsters. But the shit really hit the fan when a 34-year-old man dropped nine, yes, NINE kids off at a Nebraska hospital, ranging in age from one to 17. Before state officials had time to amend the law, more parents were showing up with teenagers in tow.
Naturally, like all moral uproars in the United States, the Nebraska Safe Haven law uproar prompted Dr. Phil to chime in with his condescending two cents. If only there was somewhere we could drop him off...
2California's "Healthy Lunchbox" Program, Now with Lead
Breaking news: Kids are fat! Many of them anyway. If you remember the days when a small group of overweight kids roamed the halls having their lives made miserable at the hands of the svelte majority, it's been a long time since you were in school. These days, the fat kids are the majority. That's what happens when your school lunch menu boasts items like "White Chocolate Macadamia Foodloaf" and "Chewy Runt Nachos."
Also delicious on salads.
Facing a potentially drastic plunge in the amount of hot ass strolling the future streets of Los Angeles, the state of California decided to take action against childhood obesity with the Healthy Lunchbox Campaign. The idea behind the program was pretty simple. Hundreds of thousands of lunch bags emblazoned with various reminders to eat healthy were handed out to California school kids.
Did the kids read or pay any attention to the messages on the bags? Probably not. Did they use the bags to haul Cheetos and cans of Jolt Cola to school? Most likely. But that's not the problem here.
We consulted with our team of scientists and they did confirm that giving kids bags to haul goodies around in probably won't help with the problem of childhood obesity. We had to do that because California never got to the "is this shit working?" stage with their program. Just a couple of months into the school year, the Sacramento County Public Health Department ran tests on the free lunch bags and found that they were tainted with lead. A shocking development, considering the bags were made in China.
With the knowledge that their lunch bags were filled with unhealthy levels of sweet, delicious, brain damage-causing lead, government officials leaped into action. Just joking, they actually waited two fucking months before issuing a recall. They defended their delayed response by saying that they had to wait for "more confirmation tests." And who are we to judge? Maybe those first few tainted bags belonged to those weird kids who smell like piss and sniff markers all day.
When the additional testing excuse failed to please irate parents, the Consumer Product Safety Commission fell back on a stone cold classic excuse: Blame George Bush. Because of budget cuts by the Bush administration, they claimed to be short on funds and staff. Apparently, typing up a letter informing people that their kids are hauling around lead lunch bags and shooting it off to news agencies is a pretty labor intensive effort. We can sympathize, it took eight Cracked staffers 17 months just to write this one paragraph.