Fast Food Nation

February 9, 2009
By Chris Bourke BRONZE, Plano, Texas
Chris Bourke BRONZE, Plano, Texas
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

In Eric Schlosser's novel, 'Fast Food Nation', he has accumulated some disturbing facts about the 'real world' surrounding the fast food industry. I mean come on, fast food is alright, right? Not so much. It's like playing Russian roulette with your stomach. Get lucky and the meat will possibly contain who knows what sort of bacteria. If you're not so lucky, you could be chewing on meat that came from an animal that was dead before it even arrived at the meat processing plant. There have been number of cases of with E. Coli, mostly along the northeastern region of America. There have been countless illnesses, even deaths, caused by fast food.
What we're all looking for here is good food, fast, something we can't find. Regardless whether it's pure white chicken you're biting into, or a tumor, you're willing to pay the $2.75 for a bite on your way home. It might be a quick snack in between soccer games, or a lunch break binge during a day at work. Schlosser gives an insurmountable amount of facts to wake up our naive fast mindset. It makes me wonder about the 'mystery meat' our lunch ladies served us in the early years of elementary school, McWhat did I actually eat out of a waxed paper sack this weekend? It raises multiple questions in my mind, but not enough in the minds of those in government positions. After multiple situations where hundreds of thousands of pounds of meat were recalled, the government continued to place their interest on the concern of cost, over an increasing health concern. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure there are great success stories coming from fast food illness as well. Whether it's a new best friend you in the E.R., or being able to fit into those XL size jeans you've always wanted to grow into. In all seriousness though, it seems like a rare occasion that the average American would tolerate a hungry stomach as they pass a fast food franchise. It seems to makes complete sense. Quick, cheap, 'food'. Why wait until you get home when you could clear a little change out of your cup holder for a five piece nugget combo? The essence of this story is reflected in a society that is forever changed in many ways possible, by this monster of an industry. Eric describes the influence on the youth, the media, and even the development of land and life surrounding such businesses. He notes that the low price of fast food hamburgers doesn't reflect the real cost; obesity and other ailments that result from this high fat, high sodium, low nutrient food.
There have been benefits created by the fast food industry, including millions of jobs for Americans all over. Schlosser provides an accurate portrayal of the 'Dark Side' of fast food that the average American is unaware of. These include diseases, illness, and even death. The history of the meat packing plants, and the poor choices of the government have allowed diseased meat to enter school after school. With today's growing concern for health, I can only pray for greater public awareness to bring about positive change in this industry. As for now, I'll be eating at home.

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