There Really Is No Such Thing as a Free Lunch

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3 Responses

  1. Katie says:

    Strickland’s point that treating people like human beings, giving them clean, nice places that show them that the world can be a good place

    I actually think the school lunch equivalent of a “clean, nice place” is really important here. At least from my experience in the public school system, it’s not just the fact that school lunches are free that gives them a stigma. It’s that they’re often truly disgusting (I’m remembering things like turkey tetrazzini that looked like regurgitated plastic goop), while the other kids are buying pizza hut pizza that the school orders in. I know it’s difficult in a cafeteria setting, but I suspect some way of coming up with food that’s actually palatable to kids, although presumably not junk food like the pizza, would make a big difference.

  2. Matt Lister says:

    When I was in grade-school my family usually qualified for free or (more often) reduced price lunches at school. We were, thankfully, given the same meals as everyone but the “lunch tickets” we were given were a different color and it was obvious when we bought them (from the teacher at the start of each week) that those getting free or reduced tickets were doing so. I, and I think the others, found it quite emberassing. I’d often try to bring my own lunch from home to avoid it if I could. Others, obviously, wouldn’t have that option. My understanding was that having the different colored tickets was for accounting reasons and to make it harder for people to give or sell them to people who didn’t qualify but I’d think the potential damage to kids might well have been worth worrying about that less.

  3. bill says:

    Like the time in school when we got free lunch,

    and the cool kids beat us up ( reduced lunch)

    and the rich kids had convertibles

    and we had to ride the bus ( 55)

    like the time we made the baseball team,

    but they still laughed at us ( you still suck)

    ah, the New York Times . . . catching up to what Good Charlotte knew year ago.