Mrs. Obama Guilt-Trips Olympic Wunderkind—Over 300-Calorie “Sin”?

Sixteen year-old Olympian gold medalist Gabby Douglas—a model of sweet humility, giving “all the glory to God”—had her well-deserved turn in the spotlight with Jay Leno last night, and was treated to a dose of humiliation from our self-appointed nutrition czarina, Mrs. Obama.

Asked what she did to celebrate her stunning performance in London, Miss Douglas naively revealed she’d had an Egg McMuffin, to which Mrs. Obama apparently felt justified in weighing in with her opinion that such was “setting [her] back”.

Apart from committing the gaffe of offering an unsolicited correction of others (as per Miss Manners), Mrs. Obama apparently suffers from a lack of balance. Yes, we wish to model healthy eating patterns for children, but if Miss Douglas is not herself the absolute embodiment of what one could only dream of for every child—dedication, hard work, piety, humility, joy, and on and on—I cannot imagine who would be.

And, by the way, an Egg McMuffin as her reward for years of hard work and supreme achievement under competitive conditions none of us can imagine, is far from what most of us would judge (if we had any right to judge) a “guilty” treat. As described on the McDonald’s website,

Our signature sandwich is made with a freshly cracked* Grade A egg with extra lean Canadian bacon and a slice of melty American cheese, held together by a freshly toasted English muffin. And all that for 300 calories.

Full independent nutrition disclosure is here, confirming the 300 calorie figure, as well as the fat, etc., counts as on the McDonald’s site.

Given her own husband’s reported predilection for cheeseburgers, cigarettes, and other vices that are none of my business, perhaps Mrs. Obama ought, as my gradeschool teacher used to say, “tend to her own knitting.”

Mary L. G. Theroux is Senior Vice President of the Independent Institute. Having received her A.B. in economics from Stanford University, she is Managing Director of Lightning Ventures, L.P., a San Francisco Bay Area investment firm, former Chairman of the Board of Advisors for the Salvation Army of both San Francisco and Alameda County, and Vice President of the C.S. Lewis Society of California.
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