Fri09192014

Letters to the Editor

Let students decide what to eat for lunch

Only in the government-run re-education schools can an administrator get away with telling high school students what they can and can’t eat for lunch. I’m talking to you, Mountain View Los Altos Union High School Superintendent Barry Groves (“Food fight ahead? City council asked to consider ban on mobile vendors near Los Altos High,” Sept. 11).

Many of these students are already adults, and the others will be adults very soon. The reason they all want to go out to the street to buy lunch from food trucks is because they don’t like your food. Educators don’t know this, but this is the free market at work. Students are willing to pay more for their lunch with less convenience to escape the crappy food the school has to offer.

No one had to force them to buy from the food trucks, and no one had to force the food trucks to sell it to them. If you had your way, you would make lunchtime in the school cafeteria mandatory and force-feed your students.

This must be a terrible admission of failure to prepare these high school students to go out and get a job or go to college if they don’t even know how to eat lunch. What would happen if their future employers told them what they could and couldn’t eat for lunch? They would quit, and their employers would not be able to get enough good employees.

The students are not breaking any laws or acting immorally by wanting good, tasty food from these vendors, which, in fact, often have nutritious, healthful food along with sweets and snack food. If you get the town to ban them from selling to the high school students, the trucks should also be banned from selling anywhere in the town, including festivals and farmers’ markets. And while you’re at it, you can make a list of other banned items, including certain cars, light bulbs, toilets, clothing, music and anything else you don’t like.

Superintendent Groves, it’s not up to you or the Central Committee what high school students eat for lunch. It’s solely up to them and their parents. You wouldn’t understand. You’ve been in public education way too long.

Ron Knapp

Los Altos

High school food equal of gourmet trucks?

I read your article “Food fight ahead?” with great interest. But I was puzzled by this sentence: “However, unlike the popular gourmet food truck trend often seen in metropolitan areas, the mobile vendors near the high school sell items to students that can’t be found on campus – candy bars, sugary sodas, quesadillas and more.”

Are you implying that the food served at Los Altos High is the equal to that served by gourmet food trucks?  If so, I believe a review of the Los Altos High food is in order.

Or you might have meant that gourmet food trucks serve healthier food than those behind campus.  I look forward to your nutritional analysis comparing a random sample of “gourmet” food trucks with those working at Los Altos High.

Tony Lima

Los Altos

A lesson in bag economics

Basic economics teaches us that whenever a product is banned or restricted, three events will happen: a black market for the banned product appears; the price of the restricted product increases dramatically; and localities that do not have the ban or restrictions will see an increase in migration, for example, our best writers moving to Europe to flee Prohibition in the 1920s and today’s potheads moving to Colorado.

The current ban on plastic bags and fee restrictions on paper bags provide a case in point.

The use of paper bags for storing old newspapers and the use of plastic bags for dog droppings will always be there. Over time, your current stash of bags, which is crammed next to your refrigerator or washing machine, will be depleted and you will not only start paying 10 cents for a paper bag, but also will buy more fruits and vegetables just to get those skimpy plastic bags that are still offered.

Supermarkets will recognize this increase in paper-bag demand and will most certainly double or triple the fees that are charged for them. At the same time, the price of bootleg plastic bags on eBay will soar.

Fortunately, there are enlightened communities such as Fresno that still cherish our bag freedoms and have not succumbed to pressure for any type of bag restrictions. These communities will see a tidal wave of migration as the access for free bags eclipses education as the prime motivation for buying real estate.

There are two ways that all of us can now profit from the situation: Invest in plastic bag futures and buy land in Fresno.

Wayne King

Los Altos

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