back to article Italian MP threatens parents forcing veggie diets on kids with jail

Italian vegetarians and vegans face fines and imprisonment if they attempt to foist their meat and dairy-dodging habits to their offspring, should an Italian politician get her way. Elvira Savino is pushing a bill in Italy’s lower house which would make it a criminal offence to impose a “diet lacking in essential elements for …

  1. Richard Wharram

    Not unsupportive of the idea as long as it forms a general principle not just for this single issue. Therefore I'm hoping to see parents being banned from forcing their religious views and social inadequacy on their children too.

    *popcorn*

    1. AJ MacLeod

      How about if people just got on with their own life and let other people get on with theirs - including bringing up their own children the way they see best? If you want children to be brought up with your own particular twisted worldview have some of your own.

      1. Greg D
        Flame

        @ AJ MacLeod

        Because my internet-based commenter-friend, some people do not have the mental capacity to raise said child without said child suffering severe injury, or dying - either due to a crazy ideology that is actually proven bollocks, or just plain dumbness. The article did point this out, when referencing previous cases in Italy, and the reasons for those cases.

        That becomes the responsibility of the people/state - otherwise we'd be in the dark ages, blindly looking the other way when this shit happens, because of people that say things like, and I quote, "How about if people just got on with their own life and let other people get on with theirs - including bringing up their own children the way they see best".

        :)

        1. AJ MacLeod

          Re: @ Greg D

          The thing is that government intervention, no matter how well intentioned it may have been, is more often than not a total failure because of varying mixes of incompetence and malice on the part of those implementing it.

          Regarding this particular case it's stupid and simply wrong to state that children raised on a vegetarian diet will suffer severe injury as a result and therefore their parents need to be prosecuted. The numbers of children suffering severe injury through poor (and specifically vegetarian) diets are minuscule; such problems are best addressed when said minuscule number of children show up for medical treatment.

          The proposal in the article is of a type of idea far too prevalent today - government intrusion into every little detail of family life, including exactly what is served up at each meal and prosecution of those who want to serve up something other than the government approved menu. It's a stupid way to tackle a non-issue, which would end up prosecuting many of those who actually feed their children far better than average.

          1. Greg D

            Re: @ Greg D

            Well its not wrong to state that children raised on a VEGAN diet will suffer injury, as there are documented cases about it, which is why this was mooted in the first place! And if it's that hard to get a vegan diet right, that DOES contain everything they need to grow properly, then whats the fuking point?

            Note: some major differences between vegan and veggie. The latter being slightly more nutrient rich.

            If they fed their children far better than average, we wouldnt have this problem, nor would we have this discussion. Add to this the fact that people's ideologies are stretching into the "batshit insane" category now, and thanks to the internet, we have the dawn of the age of naturopath fuckwits, this is NOT a far stretch, or a bad move on the governments part. It makes absolute sense - if these twatbadgers cant seperate the facts from the bullshit (thanks to the internet/misinformation age), and they refuse to understand in the scientific facts (which is NOT a belief system), then they are unfit to parent and do not deserve that responsibility. Same as some people can be told they are not allowed to own pets.

            Disclaimer - I am not saying children are remotely like pets - it was for analogous purposes only.

            1. AJ MacLeod

              Re: @ Greg D

              Well a few points - firstly the differences between vegan and veggie are moot if the article is correct in stating that this loony wants both types of parents jailed.

              Secondly, there always have been and always will be people with extremely odd ideas - I wasn't denying that and have already pointed out that in the minuscule number of cases where children end up seriously affected by their parent's dietary choices some kind of intervention is required (sending the parent to jail is unlikely to be the best first intervention.) There is no need for weekly government inspection of all household menus.

              Thirdly, scientific "facts" are quite often not facts at all; government recommendations on a multitude of things relating to childcare have changed radically over the years and all of them were considered "scientific facts" at the time. Jailing parents who didn't subscribe to these later revoked methods would hardly have been reasonable would it?

              1. Greg D

                Re: @ Greg D

                Veggie vs. Vegan is not moot, as there are large numbers of missing food groups from the latter, which provide many nutrients.

                The change in scientific stance on nutrition is just evidence of the field of science always accepting new ideas and evidence - it self-adjusts. You dismissing that means you dismiss the principles that govern science. It's particularly tricky around food and nutrition as there are so many dicks out there doing all they can to spread misinformation, and you have to take in intolerances and allergies, which are becoming more noticable due to the better diagnosis rates and methods (thanks science).

                At no point did the article say that the proposals would jail anyone feeding their kids on a veggie/vegan diet (actually it didnt say anything about that in detail, but I would assume only enacted when a child is hospitalised and the cause found to be related to poor diet).

                I didnt read anywhere that they would be doing state menu inspections either. Not entirely sure where you picked that up from, unless it was tin-foil hat mode drawing tin-foil hat conclusions.

                1. 's water music Silver badge

                  Re: @ Greg D

                  At no point did the article say that the proposals would jail anyone feeding their kids on a veggie/vegan diet (actually it didnt say anything about that in detail, but I would assume only enacted when a child is hospitalised and the cause found to be related to poor diet).

                  It is hard to tell from a google translate reading of the linked article, leaving aside whether the article accurately represents the proposed bill or not but the article suggests a greater penalty if the child's diet results in illness or injury which suggests that it seeks to proscribe certain diets. What is less clear from the article is how a "diet lacking in essential elements for growth" is defined and whether the bill includes vegan diets by definition or not. Since one might expect that failing to adequately feed a child would be covered already by safeguarding regulations one might assume that this bill is either trying to proscribe something more specific or create a more narrowly defined offence to make prosecution easier. It sounds as though the proposer has a bee in her bonnet over veg/vegan diets and may be somewhat of a populist so I would be inclined to be suspicious until some evidence os offered that the bill is not motivated by unnecessary or malicious interference. I am assuming here that basic safeguarding is already adequately covered.

            2. Phil Lord

              Re: @ Greg D

              It is wrong to state that children fed on a vegan diet WILL suffer injury, as there are many counter-examples. It is possible to do, although it requires some care.

              Of course, that is also true of a diet containing meat. It is possible to do well, but then (even in Italy) the rise of obesity is well documented and ongoing. There are some cases, of course, of children being undernourished. But the opposite is much more common and, also, life threatening.

              The bill in question appears to be grandstanding, rather than a serious attempt to provide careful consideration to legal consequences for giving a poor diet to your children. Even if the aim were a sensible one, this would be very hard to legislate for without a lot of thought and consideration.

            3. Pedigree-Pete
              Joke

              Children & Pets

              My children are just as important as my pets and I won't stand for anyone suggesting I treat the children poorly. :) PP

            4. WereWoof

              Re: @ Greg D

              Thank you for "twatbadgers" It made my day. I must remember that next time someone annoys me at work :)

        2. onemark

          Re: @ AJ MacLeod

          Agree.

          Not to mention the small matter of malnutrition of children (= child maltreatment?).

      2. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Big Brother

        you make too much common sense

        "How about if people just got on with their own life and let other people get on with theirs"

        you make too much common sense, and have the down-votes to prove it!

        a *BIG* thumbs-up from ME

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Devil

      "Therefore I'm hoping to see parents being banned from forcing..."

      other things we should potentially ban parents from 'forcing' or aggressively teaching:

      a) a belief in 'man made global warming'

      b) voting 'Demo-Rat' (in the USA anyway) or 'socialist' in any form

      c) being atheist

      d) acting like reverse-racists (i.e. chip-on-shoulder minorities)

      e) willingly accepting gummint handouts instead of teaching self-reliance

      f) wearing islamic clothing

      g) NOT defending yourself against bullies, aggressors, etc.

      h) that guns are inherently evil

      yes - what if the tables are turned, the 'rubber band is on the OTHER claw', etc. ???

      probably best to 'mind our OWN business' instead, like someone else suggested.

      [howler-monkey down-voting expected - fling poo while you're at it]

      1. arctic_haze Silver badge

        Criminal persecution for teaching mainstream climate science?

        I go almost every year to the EGU conference in Vienna. It seems most of the 12,000 scientists who take part should be arrested for agreeing that greenhouse gases do warm the planet.

        The last time people were threatened in Europe for teaching mainstream science was during Galileo times.

      2. Triggerfish

        b) voting 'Demo-Rat' (in the USA anyway) or 'socialist' in any form

        Not a fan of democracy then?

      3. 's water music Silver badge

        @bombastic bob

        upvoted because I am fairly sure you are trying to make a sensible point behind the set of trolling examples you used to make it

  2. CustardGannet

    Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

    I guess they better start arresting every parent who buys their kids food from Jack Fulton's, Iceland, MacD's, Burger King (or the Italian equivalent thereof)...

    1. Known Hero

      Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

      I don't see any reason not to take parents of seriously obese children to court.

      Oh wait you say he is just "Big Boned" nm then.

    2. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

      Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

      I'd say that's not quite as bad. It's negligence rather than imposing poor health through ideology.

      Actively trying to give your child an inadequate diet is more serious.

      1. CustardGannet

        Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

        @disgusted - You seem to be asserting that veggie/vegan diets are 'inadequate' per se. Evidence please, rather than just prejudice.

        1. tony72

          Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

          It is difficult, though not impossible, to have a healthy vegan diet without taking some supplements, slightly less so for vegetarian. You can look at any reputable source, such as the NHS advice on vegetarian and vegan diets for children for a rundown on the supplements that will probably be needed.

          You could certainly argue that a diet that requires supplements in order to provide the necessary nutrition is, by definition, "inadequate". However with the appropriate supplements is probably as healthy as a proper balanced diet. So I guess it depends which of those two cases you're referring to as to whether the diet is inadequate or not.

          1. Ian Emery Silver badge
            Boffin

            Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

            It is EXTREMELY difficult, though not impossible, for a CHILD to have a healthy vegan diet without taking some supplements.

            The problem is that parents think THEIR healthy vegan diet is suitable for their children - and it is not, children need much different nutrition at different stages of their development.

            This is an issue in the UK as well, and has been for over two decades; doctors and hospitals in affluent areas seeing children brought in with rickets and other ailments caused by malnutrition.

            Not POOR people, but wealthy, chinless, idiots forcing their lifestyle choices on their children without thinking it through.

            Yes, it is possible, but it takes research and a lot of planning to get a healthy balance throughout their childhood, I used to know a lad raised this way, and his lunch box was always filled with weird shyt he needed to eat to get what eating a bit of beef, chicken or pork every day could give him.

            Obviously, someone it Italy has lost patients with trying to teach the parents to be responsible.

            (Waits for down votes from chinless wonders)

            1. This post has been deleted by its author

          2. Falmari

            Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

            Did you read the article you linked supplements were not needed for a vegetarian diet.

      2. heyrick Silver badge

        Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

        "Actively trying to give your child an inadequate diet is more serious."

        If I had a child, I'd be very inclined to want to give it a well balanced vegetarian organic diet.

        Because all the shit that passes for "normal" in modern food production, it would make you want to stop eating period. Sometimes I go to McDo and I just pretend to be oblivious to the number of hormones and growth enhancers shoved into cows, the squalid conditions of egg laying chickens, the treatment and preparation of meat.

        The French do regular projects to collect blood from people for use in hospitals. If you go on holiday to France and have ever seen a "Don du sang" poster, that is what it's about. Did you know, they will not collect blood from anybody who spent more than one year in the United Kingdom between 1980 and 1996. Time to drag out and air your favourite pet conspiracy theory, but I suspect it has a lot to do with the horribly shitty way "food" becomes.

        So with this in mind, perhaps said MP might like to consider what exactly is and isn't "safe", as I'd imagine there are worse things than missing some vitamins (that can easily be supplemented) from a "proper" diet.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

          1. bombastic bob Silver badge
            Devil

            Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

            "But just be aware that quite a lot of people are fully aware how scientifically bankrupt the whole 'organic' food set up is."

            especially in those cases where _HUMAN_ excrement had been used for fertilizer [yes, it's happened]. "organic" indeed.

            I happen to like meat. if growth hormones cause *MY* muscles to enlarge, so much the better! besides, so many "food fallacies" have existed over the years. It *used* to be that MARGARINE was considered 'healthy' with all of those "poly-unsaturates". We *NOW* call them "trans-fats".

            So *LEGISLATING* dietary choices doesn't sound so SMART now...

          2. heyrick Silver badge

            Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

            @ Symon: in case you didn't notice - 1, I mentioned that I eat from time to time at McDonald's. 2, I buy organic from a local cooperative and since I live rural I'm quite capable of seeing my produce being grown and meeting the people growing it, none of this supermarket bollocks. 3, you can say British food is safe all you want but several (not just France it seems) countries refusing to take blood from UK citizens in that time frame suggests something was going on; can you trust the government to tell the truth? (ho ho look at brexit). And 4, thank you but I'll eat what I choose to eat. Kindly take your soap box and douchebaggery someplace else.

        2. rboote

          Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

          ". Did you know, they will not collect blood from anybody who spent more than one year in the United Kingdom between 1980 and 1996. Time to drag out and air your favourite pet conspiracy theory, but I suspect it has a lot to do with the horribly shitty way "food" becomes."

          The U,S, Red Cross won't take blood donations from anyone who spent time in the U.K. in the 80s. It's to do with Mad Cow. I enjoy telling people I don't donate blood because I have it.

        3. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

          >Did you know, they will not collect blood from anybody who spent more than one year in the United Kingdom between 1980 and 1996.

          The reason is fear of CJD, a human version of Mad Cow Disease. The Canadians and Australians have - or have had - similar rules.

          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1116429/

        4. CustardGannet
          Trollface

          @ heyrick : "it would make you want to stop eating period"

          Better avoid those hens eggs, then...

        5. IsJustabloke

          Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

          @heyrick

          I see you subscribe to the tired old "if you eat meat, you don't care about welfare" theory which basically marks you out as ignorant. As do your remarks about why teh French don't take blood from the English.

          I make no bones about it, I eat meat but that doesn't mean I shove any old shite in my mouth. For example I rarely eat any kind of fast food. I support a local butcher who sources his stock from local farms (in the case of beef it's right there on his brother's farm) ... the eggs I buy come from chicken that spend their days running around unfettered...I know exactly how they live because they're *my* chickens... I eat locally sourced in season vegetables.

          I'm happy for veggies or vegans to enjoy whatever diet floats their boat but I am heartily sick of their (more often than not) holier than thou attitude and constant carping on about how I don't care about animals. Eating meat and being an arse to animals are not the same thing at all.

          So how about a little "live and let live" because frankly meat eaters are almost exclusively more tolerant of your lifestyle choices than any veggie I know is of mine and that is the reason why veggies get such a hard time.

        6. Nolveys Silver badge

          Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

          If I had a child, I'd be very inclined to want to give it a well balanced vegetarian organic diet.

          I prefer to eat organic food too. The inorganic stuff really burns my throat.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

            Maybe you're "allergic" to non-organic food, in the same way I get ADD when I have to do something boring.

        7. Dr_N Silver badge

          Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

          "So with this in mind, perhaps said MP might like to consider what exactly is and isn't "safe", as I'd imagine there are worse things than missing some vitamins (that can easily be supplemented) from a "proper" diet."

          Depends if your kids have rickets, I guess.

        8. Ian Emery Silver badge

          Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

          @heyrick

          You need to learn what the difference is between a VEGETARIAN diet and a VEGAN diet; the difference doesnt seem very big, but in reality is is enormous; a Veggie diet is not to difficult to arrange for a child, as they can get proteins etc from eggs and cheese (and fish in some variants), but a vegan diet has no easy way to safely intake proteins (nuts being a big no-no for young children); soya products are about all they can readily have, and it doesnt contain the right mixtures a young child needs.

          (and soya based baby milk is down to a single brand in the UK now, C&G ceased production of their excellent product after a fire, leaving only the slightly whiffy SMA version.

          1. Named coward

            Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

            Do vegan diets allow human baby milk?

            1. Pompous Git Silver badge

              Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

              Do vegan diets allow human baby milk?

              I'm more curious as to how many babies it takes to manufacture a pint of milk. Personally, I prefer olive oil to baby oil for cooking...

        9. Mark 85 Silver badge
          Pint

          Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

          I'd imagine there are worse things than missing some vitamins (that can easily be supplemented) from a "proper" diet.

          Who's version of "proper"? Your version, my version, any one of the commentards who posts here? Doctors with agendas? Celebrities who haven't a clue but truly believe in Dr. XYZ's diet? Any of a dozen con artists out there on the 'Net who offer dietary information and their product to give what you're not getting?

          Meh.... beer o'clock here.. fulfills the requirement for the "grains" part of my diet.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

        I for one, welcome our new over-bearing, governmental, exceedingly intrusive, diet-enforcing overlords!

        Can you put mushrooms and jalepeno peppers on mine please? Mamma mia!

      4. Esme

        Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

        @disgustedoftunbridgewells - but they're not. They're trying to impose a vegan diet and failing at doing it properly. That's not the same thing as deliberatelytrying to enforce an inadequate diet.

        Same situation with people feeding their kids junk food. They're not deliberately feeding their kids badly (and I've heard of the odd case of rickets or scurvy as a result) - they're trying to feed them adequately but making a very poor job of it.

        Now, if anyone was deliberately trying to feed their child an inadequate diet - then sure - throw the book at 'em, lock'em up and throw away the key, IMO.

      5. 's water music Silver badge

        Re: Criminal offence to impose a diet lacking in essential elements ?

        I'd say that's not quite as bad. It's negligence rather than imposing poor health through ideology.

        Actively trying to give your child an inadequate diet is more serious.

        I suspect that the straw parents you complain about would be more likely to be trying to do the opposite. I am not sure that to fail in that goal (of providing a diet that is both vegan and adequately balanced for a child) is morally worse than a failure either to realise that a junk food diet can be harmful or simply not to act on that realisation.

  3. IT Hack

    I don't think you'll find many vegans eating anchovies. Actually...can you call people who eat fish vegetarians?

    1. Psy-Q

      Pescetarians, they are (if they don't eat meat). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pescetarianism

      1. kryptonaut

        Ah yes, the inevitable scooby-doo unmasking at the end of each episode, where the villain says "And I'd have gotten away with it if it wasn't for you pescetarians"

    2. WraithCadmus

      MEAT IS MURDER! Fish is justifiable homicide...

      Okay I'm just being mean. People who are veggie on animal welfare grounds can make an argument that a fish lives a natural life up until the moment its caught, so the suffering is minimal.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Meat is saving animals

        There are charities to save leopards and pandas etc although humans don't do a good enough job of keeping a wild environment for them. If you can't make money out of cows, pigs, sheep etc who is going to keep a couple of Aberdeen Angus in the back garden? Farming with proper humane farming methods is the only way to make sure farm animals and especially rare breeds continue to exist.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Meat is saving animals

          That old chestnut, animals existed fine before the advent of domestication so saying they will die out unless we eat or make profit off them is just confused logic....

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Meat is saving animals

            Also, can you imagine the uproar if someone used this tired for third world kids?

            "So, we kill them and eat them, but half of them wouldn't be a;ive today if it wasn't for us"...

            And to pre-empt responses like "animals are not the same as humans" (an often heard response)... way to miss the point.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Meat is saving animals

              Also, can you imagine the uproar if someone used this tired for third world kids?

              "So, we kill them and eat them, but half of them wouldn't be a;ive today if it wasn't for us"...

              And to pre-empt responses like "animals are not the same as humans" (an often heard response)... way to miss the point.

              I didn't realise that third world kids did not have the same DNA as other kids. Perhaps we should farm these lower forms of life in case their DNA disappears when they become extinct.

          2. carolinahomes

            Re: Meat is saving animals

            Eating the North American Bison kept it from extinction, even though most are now cross-breeds.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Meat is saving animals

              The cause of their near extinction was human made! If I push you into some water then pull you out can I claim I saved your life?

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Meat is saving animals

            More species have become extinct than actually exist in the present day and most of them before any type of man appeared. Unless you're a creationist that is. Unless we abandon technology and go back to hunter gathering, this new farming and technology era will continue. The only way now to look after many species is by farming.

        2. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: Meat is saving animals

          with the (obvious) exceptions of overfishing and possibly overhunting, I agree. In fact, the 'delta smelt' that's using up 30% of California's water supply (during an extended drought, forcing our '2nd time around' Demo-Rat governor to restrict citizens' water usage, while simultaneously DUMPING our state's limited water down the Sacramento river to 'save the fish') could become a non-issue if we came up with a good recipe, maybe canning them like sardines? A fish farm for 'delta smelt' would guarantee they never go away, ever.

          /me would like fried condor and dodo burgers, next. And yeah, we'll never run out of cows, sheep, pigs, chickens etc. because they _TASTE_ _GOOD_.

      2. Triggerfish

        Some people don't regard fish in the same way. I have had people say they can't feel pain, or just don't see them as being cute and fuzzy. I have had people basically admit to what can only amount to torturing pet fish but would be horrified if you did the same thing to a kitten.

        People who say they are vegetarians due to concerns on animal welfare, and then say but I eat fish can be annoying. I've met a couple. Most veggies I know though are actually no different form the rest of us though.

      3. Vic

        People who are veggie on animal welfare grounds can make an argument that a fish lives a natural life up until the moment its caught

        Farmed fish is no more and no less "natural" than farmed pig or cow...

        Vic.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "I don't think you'll find many vegans eating anchovies."

      That was the point of the sentence, I presume. The list of items are all meat, fish dairy which is not Vegan.

      P.S. Aren't acciughe and anchovies the same thing?

    4. EddieD

      No. You can't.

      I've yet to see an anchovy bush, or a trout tree.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Anchovy bush?

        EddieD <<I've yet to see an anchovy bush...>>

        Well, you'd probably know it if you ever came across one, but they're an acquired taste.

  4. MJI Silver badge

    Italian veggy

    Do they actually exist?

    And now I really want a pizza!

    1. Jon B

      Re: Italian veggy

      That pizza photo was cruelly delicious looking. As a non-Italian vegetarian I didn't even notice the salami.

  5. wolfetone Silver badge

    Boils down to the old scenario of parents doing what they think is best for their children, only for the children to think their parents are wrong and make different choices, which they then impose on their own children, who in turn think their parents are barmy and decide to make a different choice, which they then promote to their own children etc etc etc.

    Let your children make their own decisions based on their own beliefs and feelings. Otherwise you become what you hate.

    1. SImon Hobson Silver badge

      Let your children make their own decisions

      That's all well and good - when they are old enough to make such decisions. There's a biiiiiig gap between when the damage is done to infants and toddlers and when those children are old enough to make their own minds up.

      I'm a bit split on this issue though. One the one hand it does smack of nanny state - but on the other hand there are serious concerns for the health of children who are too young to make their own decisions. Yes, when the child is old enough to stand up to his/her parents and tell them "enough of this rubbish, I'm off down the pizzeria for some proper food" - then they are old enough. Until then I'd say they are deserving of protection.

      1. wolfetone Silver badge

        "That's all well and good - when they are old enough to make such decisions. There's a biiiiiig gap between when the damage is done to infants and toddlers and when those children are old enough to make their own minds up."

        There is of course. What I was getting at in a very bad way was imposing what you believe to be right is wrong. Vegetarians/Vegans/Fruitarians make the decision, daily, to avoid animal products. They're entitled to if that's what they believe. My problem is that those who decide their child should be brought up the same way aren't doing their child any favours. I don't see a problem in a Vegetarian or Vegan providing their child with a balanced diet consisting of meat as well as vegetables and at an age that is appropriate where they can understand what is being said, you can then tell them where the carrots come from and where the lamb shank came from.

        To me it's a lot like the time on one of those trash shows where the mother didn't let her children eat yoghurt because she thought it was disgusting and just rotten milk. You're preventing the child from learning and experiencing different food groups.

        You may not agree with it, but your child won't agree with you on your choice of music either. So why dictate to your child what they can and can't eat when they have absolutely no idea about the reasons why?

        1. DropBear Silver badge
          Trollface

          Vegan murderers! How dare you! Carrots and parsnips are alive too! You're all chewing on the bones of our mother Gaia!!!

        2. 's water music Silver badge

          There is of course. What I was getting at in a very bad way was imposing what you believe to be right is wrong. Vegetarians/Vegans/Fruitarians make the decision, daily, to avoid animal products. They're entitled to if that's what they believe. My problem is that those who decide their child should be brought up the same way aren't doing their child any favours. I don't see a problem in a Vegetarian or Vegan providing their child with a balanced diet consisting of meat as well as vegetables and at an age that is appropriate where they can understand what is being said, you can then tell them where the carrots come from and where the lamb shank came from.

          I think you are making a category error. Your argument depends on their being a set of default, non-ideological set of lifestyle choices that should be applied to all children until they are mature enough to choose an ideology of their own. I don't think that such a set exists

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Let your children make their own decisions based on their own beliefs and feelings. Otherwise you become what you hate.

      Chips every day it is, then.

  6. TechnicalBen Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Milk makes me violently ill...

    And after a few decades, it may be wheat does too, and I was just never tested/checked because the Drs said "oh, you just have a cold/are lazy/what you moaning about?"

    So I have zero confidence in such a law to be use balanced or helpfully, but instead to cause loads more harm then getting a little less milk would do to a person. :/

    But no doubt the intention is to make abuse and neglect illegal... which tends to already be the case, but people need it spelt out I guess?

  7. Kubla Cant Silver badge

    Vegans are all pale, scrawny and weak - look at Venus Williams, for example.

    1. Baldy50

      Only during the Tennis season!

    2. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

      "Vegans are all pale, scrawny and weak - look at Venus Williams, for example."

      He's so feeble he plays in the womens section

  8. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "on the advice of a naturopath"

    That's the guy who should be going to jail IMO.

    1. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: "on the advice of a naturopath"

      Any time you see the letters ND after a person's name, you know that's someone who is Not a Doctor.

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge
        Meh

        Re: "on the advice of a naturopath"

        Any time you see the letters ND after a person's name, you know that's someone who is Not a Doctor.

        But doctors aren't really doctors, they only have a BSc. A PhD is required to be a real Doctor.

        1. Named coward

          Re: "on the advice of a naturopath"

          (Some?) Doctors have an M.D. Guess what that D stands for.

          1. Pompous Git Silver badge

            Re: "on the advice of a naturopath"

            (Some?) Doctors have an M.D. Guess what that D stands for.

            Presumaby teacher (you do understand Latin I take it). Tell me what it is they teach and who are their students?

            L. doceō, I teach.

  9. Fraggle850

    Mussolini's diet

    I believe that Benito Mussolini toyed with the idea of prescribing diets for citizens. IIRC he and an Italian futurist artist came to the conclusion that traditional Italian food such as pasta and bread made people lazy. Perhaps Forza are channeling il duce?

    As a veggie I have to say that I've never had any qualms about feeding meat to my own offspring (nor to my cat for that matter)

    1. DropBear Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Mussolini's diet

      Bah! What utter rubbish! What traditional Italian food (or any food for that matter, in sufficient quantity) does do is demonstrably increase gravity locally. It's noticeably harder to fight it after a good meal...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Mussolini's diet

      Mussolin Prescribed Rice and wanted to get rid of Pasta.

      http://knowledgenuts.com/2014/08/21/mussolini-tried-to-abolish-pasta/

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: A captain and his ship

      > Italian futurist artist

      I prefer Italian captains whose status allows them to board the life rafts even before the sick and elderly.

  10. Robin

    See also...

    People who enforce vegan diets on their carnivorous pets. At least the kids can express their disagreement with the diet when they're older and at least attempt to change it.

    1. BlartVersenwaldIII
      Holmes

      Re: See also...

      Pet peeve of mine as well. Most vegan and vegetarian owners are happy to understand that animals don't share the same physiology and morality as humans, but the ones that don't or won't make my blood boil.

      <oblig. Free Waterfall Jr. presenting his lion fed on tofu>

      One of my friends adopted a cat that had come from one of those "we're vegans so we'll ignore the fact that cats are obligate carnivores" families. Poor thing was as thin as a rake and half-blinded from lack of meat. Took months of gastric distress to become accustomed to a proper diet but happy to say he's now a more well-rounded mog and a superb tripping hazard every sunday in their kitchen when the roast comes out :)

  11. BlartVersenwaldIII
    Childcatcher

    > Actively trying to give your child an inadequate diet is more serious.

    Just asked the missus about this (who's Italian), apparently there have been a number of cases there recently regarding malnourished children, one of which she said was due to the parents refusing to feed it breastmilk since it's an animal product o_0 Has smackings of the red tops (trying to find an english language source) so I'd take that with a bunch of NaCl, but if true then possible to see a knee-jerk response like this.

    In any case though, malnourishment - especially deliberately - is surely already a crime?

    > Italian veggy... Do they actually exist?

    Very few and far between but yes they do. From my experience of Italy at least (mostly in the midlands and the south where meat was traditionally much more scarce and obv. didn't travel well), there are still massive amount of dishes that are made only with vegetables and starches and nuts and things and thus pretty good going for vegetarians (although of course you'd be missing out on the delicious seafood unless your one of those peculiar flesh-from-a-fish-isn't-meat people). Veganism though is practically unheard of and I imagine would be damn near impossible to live by.

    Hankering for a nice ragu now, made with some throwaway bones from the butcher that have been stewed in the tomato for hours on end and served with some fresh bread and basil leaves. Damn you and your deliciousness, Italian cuisine!

    1. Hollerithevo Silver badge

      Mmmmmmm

      Time for lunch!

  12. Baldy50

    Certainly a lot of fast or highly processed food could be considered to be as equally unhealthy especially for the young but for different reasons.

    Do I think people should be punished for this, a resounding NO!

    Not likely to catch Bovine spongiform encephalopathy either are the vegies.

    When you've seen a young overweight mum go out get a Mc dogshite meal for an already chubby two year old for the first meal of the day, I honestly felt like a slap was in order but she was a lot bigger than me.

    Anyone ever watched FOD Foreign object damage, A series of gory documentaries?

    The 'Religious' way of killing the animal is shown on livestock and the way chickens and rabbits are processed for the food industry.

    The game the men slaughtering the rabbits played was just totally wrong, seeing how many skins you could throw at the wall and get them to stick.

    1. Rich 11 Silver badge

      The game the men slaughtering the rabbits played was just totally wrong, seeing how many skins you could throw at the wall and get them to stick.

      At least they had the decency to take them off the rabbits first.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Trollface

      "When you've seen a young overweight mum go out get a Mc dogshite meal for an already chubby two year old for the first meal of the day, I honestly felt like a slap was in order but she was a lot bigger than me."

      natural selection is harsh. but in the long run, maybe we should just let nature take its course? And for this to work, you can't let the adult grossly-overweight person go on the public teet because "the fat" prevents getting a job...

      and let the kids at school do their part, too. fatty-fatty-2-by-four etc. maybe it'll MOTIVATE healthier lifestyle. no, wait... it's not "politically correct"! [society re-enforcing bad behavior again by coddling instead of slapping]

  13. 1Rafayal

    damn vegans

  14. James Hughes 1

    AT a BBQ last weekend

    I ate about 10 sausages, three burgers (sans bun - no-one needs those carbs) and a whole bowl full of ribs.I had NO vegetation whatsoever. None, Naga, Zilch, Zero.

    Nothing to do with the article really, just wanted to gloat at those poor veggies who would stare at my plate and cry into their tofu and quinoa 'burger'.

    1. Hollerithevo Silver badge

      Re: AT a BBQ last weekend

      What do you do about, um, roughage?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: AT a BBQ last weekend

        I have it on good authority that being chronically constipated feels much like having a stick up your arse.

        1. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

          Re: AT a BBQ last weekend

          You can mix a bit of flax seed into foods to get the adequate fibre. Fibre doesn't count toward the carb budget.

          1. 1Rafayal

            Re: AT a BBQ last weekend

            I am guessing the beer he consumed with his food was enough vegetation to keep him regular.

            Nae need for this vegetable pish.

            1. Vic

              Re: AT a BBQ last weekend

              I am guessing the beer he consumed with his food was enough vegetation to keep him regular.

              For most beers, it's actually the isinglass that has that effect on the body. And isinglass is not vegetation.

              I tend to favour vegan beers - not because I'm vegan, but just because they tend to taste better :-)

              Vic.

    2. 's water music Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: AT a BBQ last weekend

      [... ate lots of meat...]

      I also did a lot of uninteresting things at the weekend unrelated to the article but different to what you reported. Who's the cunt now?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Millions of vegetarians & vegans around the world...

    Of course - We're all just wasting away...Only last week I died of malnourishment.

    It is entirely sensible to hold parents responsible, in a society which supports them sufficiently, of course.

    However, a vegetarian or vegan diet can be healthy and fulfilling, even without supplements, quinoa, kale-liver oil, coconut & flax seed sandals.etc.

    I've never eaten meat or fish ever - like many of Indian origin I'm an (ovo)-lacto-vegetarian, and I've never once suffered for it. If anything I'm overweight, but I like cheese, bread and sitting.

    Done properly it can be healthier than any other kind of diet or lifestyle, and environmentally responsible too. It's also incredibly easy - particularly somewhere like Italy (as opposed to Iceland).

    1. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: Millions of vegetarians & vegans around the world...

      Only last week I died of malnourishment.

      But then you got better.

    2. Captain DaFt

      Re: Millions of vegetarians & vegans around the world...

      "I've never eaten meat or fish ever - like many of Indian origin I'm an (ovo)-lacto-vegetarian,"

      So you've never had an animal killed for the meat products you eat. Actually, very commendable.

      But eggs and milk are meat products. Eliminate those, IE: Vegan diet, and you'd be much harder pressed to get the nutrients you need.

      Some Vegans have resorted to Geophagy to compensate, and brag about it!

      And now, Bec Hill:

      "Some of my best friends are vegan. They were going to come today but they didn't have the energy to climb up the stairs."

  16. Marketing Hack Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Why not ban vegans and vegetarians from breeding?

    Seems like a small step from the proposed legislation to there!

  17. Yugguy

    A luxury life-style first-world choice

    That's what vegetarianism is.

    Smug cunts.

    1. Fraggle850

      Re: A luxury life-style first-world choice

      And which low-GDP, developing nation do you hail from? Or perhaps you make no lifestyle choices and give away all your spare cash for the greater good?

      1. Yugguy

        Re: A luxury life-style first-world choice

        My lifestyle choices have no bearing on my original comment. Which is completely valid. It is a luxury choice.

        Now where was I?

        Oh yes.

        Smug cunts.

  18. moiety

    Typical bullying politician...just picking on vegetarians because they're too weak and malnourished to fight back.

  19. DougS Silver badge

    Trump's next wife

    If the headline was that he had said this, I wouldn't have even been slightly shocked considering the crazy stuff that he says or tweets on an almost daily basis. So it sounds like a match made in heaven, and she's seven years younger than Melania who is probably past due for a trade-in by Trump's standards.

    Not sure about his claim that he could shoot someone on 5th Ave and not lose any supporters, but he could probably divorce his wife and announce his engagement in the next 90 days before the election and not lose any (remaining) supporters.

  20. David Pollard

    Oblig xkcd

    https://xkcd.com/1338/

  21. Greg D

    Good.

    Veganism (aka crazy food haters), should be a choice, like religion, for when the child is an adult. A childs formative years are the most important and if they don't get the right nutrients growing up, it can lead to all sorts of problems.

    This is not enforcing my view upon others, it is a simple fact of the universe. Undeniable, and unconcerned with anyone's thoughts, feelings or opinion on what's best for "their kids" (seriously cant understand why they say that - like a kid is somoene's fucking propery or something?).

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Most of the comments seem to be ignoring the two examples in the article of children who were in poor health due to deficient diets.

    My guess and hope is that this law is to allow the parents of children in similar circumstances to be held criminally responsible, not that police are going to go around checking what's on your child's plate. I expect these negligent parents have the law on their side right now, hence the proposed law. It reminds me of US states (cough, Idaho) that have laws allowing parents to refuse medication for their children based on religious reasons. Fuck them, I say.

    If a parent thinks a vegan diet is good for their children and doesn't ensure they get supplements as necessary and the children become sick, I think it's entirely right to hold the parents criminally responsible.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Blame the hippies!"

    I can't support what this politician is doing. It's understandable that there should be punishment for parents that are intentionally malnourishing their children, since this puts unnecessary strain on the healthcare system that everyone pays into. But it's not fair to point a finger specifically at vegans and vegetarians, as a poorly-managed carnivorous diet can also be severely lacking in nutrients. Very few people would make the claim that eating at McDonalds is essential to a healthy diet, even if they do offer salads these days.

    Historically vegans have been known to take vitamin and mineral supplements to work around dietary restrictions. Why can't the government just mandate the use of supplements instead of outright banning niche diets?

    This is yet another wedge issue, and it's partly being fueled by fears from the current world immigration crisis. Lots of immigrants from the Middle East, India, and ex-Soviet countries are bringing new dietary restrictions based on moral or religious philosophy, and the old guard in Italy can't bear the notion that they would need to be more accommodating to these immigrants, especially if it means fewer profits for Italy's meat and dairy industries. You can find a similar scenario in every country experiencing the influx of immigrants.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Cos'è questa "manza"?

  25. nilfs2
    Facepalm

    License to become a parent

    In many countries you need a license to be able to have a pet, but yet any moron can spawn a kid because "human rights", what about the human rights of the children being raised by a couple of morons?

    1. Keef

      Re: License to become a parent

      You want to buy a pet, get a licence in advance or the vendor says no.

      You can't go home and make your own cat/dog/ferret/goldfish out of fresh air.

      However, we do have the means to make babies.

      So what do you propose we do with those babies that come in to existence that weren't sanctioned or licensed?

      Do we force abortion? If yes problem solved albeit in a rather harsh manner.

      If not there won't be enough resources to deal with the overflow of humans so we'll have to kill them after they are born to keep the system under control which is even harsher.

      Can't see your idea flying to be honest.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: License to become a parent

        The way around this is to change the default to being infertile, but reversibly so for those who pass the license test. But I cannot see any country realistically enacting such a mass-sterilisation program.

  26. Tromos

    Bacon deprivation=Unnecessary cruelty

    In Italy, acceptable substitutes include Parma ham, Salami Milano, Mortadella Bologna, etc.

  27. Pompous Git Silver badge
    Trollface

    Mandatory brain transplants...

    ... for all Marxist-Lentillists and Fundalentillists?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Pint

      Re: Mandatory brain transplants...

      pastafirians too?

  28. David Roberts Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Knuckle dragging bigots out in force, I see

    Nice to see one balanced response about whole cultures who are vegetarian by choice and still seem to be surviving and even thriving. As opposed to most commentards who seem to think that being vegetarian is some kind of upper middle class alternative life style.

    I noted in passing that all people who eat organic food shop at Waitrose. I assume that nobody buys the stuff available at Lidl, then?

    As already pointed out there is plenty of current legislation against child neglect and cruelty. Most often (according to the press) used against parents with morbidly obese children.

    Proposing new legislation where existing legislation is more than adequate is just an unscrupulous politician pandering to the brain dead bigots for publicity and votes. Plenty of that in the UK as well.

    1. Yugguy

      Re: Knuckle dragging bigots out in force, I see

      Ooga booga.

      https://youtu.be/z0O_VYcsIk8

  29. MJI Silver badge

    Lots of confusion I see

    Vegetarians are usually fine, they eat some animal products such as milk. They just do not eat meat as opposed to extreme avoidance.

    Aliens from a planet orbiting Vega though, usually are nutters, that story about no breast milk, beyond belief. This is a dietary fad.

    My personal beliefs are as follows.

    We are omnivorous, we have evolved that way, our digestive system is not designed for full vegetable nor carnivorus diet, but we have the acids of a carnivore, and a longer digestive tract, but not as long as a herbivore. Also look at what we can eat compared to a carnivore (look what can kill a dog).

    We also must respect our food, not just buy whatever is cheapest, but what is good. This means meat which is of high welfare, no Auschwitz chicken or eggs, outdoor reared pork, decent welfare beef.

    Our meat bill is higher than some people because we do not buy the value stuff where only normal welfare is used.

    Funny really but British farm animal welfare is among the best in the world.

    I never have ready meals, nor mass produced cooking sauces. My wife knows what goes into our food.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Happy

    Veggie-ism

    "I'm not a vegitrian because I like Animals, its because I hate vegtables and want to make them suffer"

  31. Packet

    One thing I've noticed more and more often (perhaps as I transition to a curmugeon in my advancing years...) is the zealot-like passion with which causes are adopted by people.

    Vegetarianism and veganism in the Western world are two such examples.

    In other parts of the world, a vegetarian or even vegan diet may just be due to environmental factors coupled with religious reasons. And the people practicing such could be regarded as healthy overall.

    Now, when such a dietary restriction comes to the West, suddenly, it's taken up with religious fervour denouncing all else. Eating organic, locavores, etc - all are guilty of this.

    I understand why it's a reaction to the commercial meat/fishing industry (since they have much to answer for - and fix), but the extent of the blame and shame reaction is what makes me shake my head in dismay each time. For hyperbole's sake, they make Islamic terrorism appear like a children's scuffle in a sandbox, almost...

    The key would be, in my thinking, having a balanced dietary intake - so not a single food stack (or pyramid), but multiple different variants each with their list of types of nutrients (protein, carbohydrates, fiber, etc) showing which dietary lifestyle has more or less - ideally coupled with long-term health risks for each.

    Final thoughts:

    One cannot force humans to stop eating one particular kind of food - short of making it economically prohibitive. Something no government in the world should do - as that's overstepping boundaries.

    Those animals that are farmed will not go extinct - and I applaud efforts being made in fisheries - to be able to restock and replenish while still providing a source for food.

    All this food thought is making me hungry as it's lunch time...

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Gaol, surely?

    Alas.

  33. rototype

    Are we missing something here

    Is there the possibility that this "law" will mostly be there to frighten the more timid veggie/vegan parents into actually thinking about what they're feeding their offspring and adjust accordingly, If this is the case then it's doing what it should - getting the younglings the correct balanced level of nutrition.

    As with some other comments, I wholeheartedly agree that parents stuffing fast food down the gullets of their sprogs with the exclusion of anything that could be deemed healthy should be shot on sight. Unfortunately this has ben going on for so long now it's almost regarded as socially acceptable to be overweight or even obese. This has probably come from the PC brigade saying it's not nice to call someone a fatty 10 chins. True, if you are then it's not nice to hear and I agree there are certain medical conditions that can have the same effect but in the majority of cases it's just through eating too much of the wrong sort of food.

    Personally my diet is relatively balanced (moderation is the key really) - I eat meat fairly frequently, fish at least as frequently but I also try to have a day or two each week where it's 'meat free' meals - sometimes this is down to availability (an example is when I select the meals from the works canteen as the veggie curry usually has more/nicer flavour than the beef/chicken one). My one weakness is I possibly go a little heavy on certain grain based liquid supplements - my choice and I wouldn't force it on anyone.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019