When you were a kid, did you ever find yourself looking forward to celery? Probably not, unless your parents did a really great brainwashing job. In that case, more power to them. Now, Disney is trying to step in and do that parent brainwashing job themselves. Or maybe we should call it reverse-brainwashing, in the way of removing all junk food advertisements.
My memories of food from when I was a kid consist of begging my Mom to lay off the healthy stuff. She was all about whole-grain health food all the time, and I was watching commercials for PopTarts, Pizza Hut, and GoGurt, dreaming of a world where I could drink whole milk and soda whenever I wanted. I don’t know if I can blame the media for my sweet tooth, but it was definitely a huge part of being a kid in the ’90s.
Now, Disney will be the first network to ban all fast food and junk food ads from their air waves. The ban will take effect in the near future of 2015, due to existing advertisement deals. “The emotional connection kids have to our characters and stories gives us a unique opportunity to continue to inspire and encourage them to lead healthier lives,” Disney CEO Robert Iger said in a statement.
Michelle Obama called this move a “game changer.” I’m not sure if removing ads will be enough to fight obesity, but it definitely cannot hurt. With tons of advertising dollars at stake, it seems that Disney’s motive for this move is non-financial. It would appear that the network is really looking out for the welfare of the nation’s children. With this and Tumblr’s recent attempt to ban “thinspiration” photos, perhaps we can knock off both extreme ends of the unhealthy spectrum for a healthier tomorrow.