- Posted August 16, 2013 by
Back-to-School with Peanut Allergy: Thanks to Vaccines?
Let's imagine that we are conducting an experiment on child behavior and how kids manage temptation. We purposefully choose immature and vulnerable subjects, kindergarteners, and instruct them not to play with fire or firearms. Then we place matches, torches, lighters and guns all over the school playground at recess, in the classrooms and in the cafeteria- now we make observations. 99% of children heed the instructions they were given to avoid the harmful items, but 1% do not. As a result, two children blow their heads off and there are 8 severe burns and gunshot wounds. The results of the study clearly show that the children who did not follow directions and suffered adverse consequences are to blame for these tragedies since we adults had done our parts to teach the kids to avoid the fire and guns before potential exposure. The next schoolday we conducted the experiment all over again. This scenario is happening all over our country, only the items we are allowing in school are peanuts and treenuts. There are two sides to the argument that we should ban peanuts from schools. I stand on the side that saves the lives of children allergic to peanuts over the ridiculous claims of those who say they cannot go 7 hours of a schoolday without eating peanuts/peanut-containing snacks. No one is asking healthy folks to cut out peanut from their diets altogether, just to abstain from eating it at school. Peanut allergy patients undergo hardships by trying the almost impossible task of avoiding peanut in food items, in most cases for the rest of their lives. I do not understand why these non-allergic people cannot keep their peanuts at home. There are 24 hours in a day, so if we can do math, healthy folks have 17 other hours in which to consume peanut items away from school. It is not a valid argument to propose that kids should learn to manage their peanut allergy as young as 5 years old! Some suggest that going to peanut-free school is not the real world. I believe age five is not the time to train kids to live like adults with peanut allergy. Young children do not have the tools to read and interpret labels, let alone decide if an item may contain "hidden" peanut. For the same reasons, why don't we start sex education in kindergarten and pass out condoms,