New York City’s avowed progressive Mayor, Bill de Blasio, has commanded that his city replaces all school lunches – for the sake of reducing the “carbon footprint” created by non-vegetarian diets. He also urged all residents to eat vegetarian, for the sake of the environment.
On Monday, De Blasio announced that 15 schools in Brooklyn would no longer serve any meat on Mondays, upsetting many children and their parents too. These schools now serve “spinach wraps,” “crispy tofu,” and “tofu with noodles.”
According to De Blasio, “Cutting back a little on meat will help make our city healthier and our planet stronger for generations to come. [First Lady] Chirlane [McCray] and I are excited to participate in Meatless Mondays at home, and we thank Borough President Adams for leading the charge behind this healthy and sustainable initiative.”
De Blasio further said that everyone should wholly switch to a “plant-based” diet. “Even if you had a bacon, egg, and cheese this morning, you still should want to see more and more of our diets go to a plant-based approach,” he chided.
Though not all of these students agree. Eight-year-old Gavin Garcia, a student at PS 1, when was asked by the local CBS 2 affiliate if his fellow students are all pleased with this year’s school menu?
“No,” he said. “They don’t like vegetables.”
De Blasio said that the move would help fight climate change and that it is a huge step in the right direction. The mayor’s office also said that these “Meatless Mondays” would “help reduce carbon footprint and preserve resources like water.”
The New York City Department of Education’s “Office of Sustainability” has already been mandated lunches be served on an “eco-friendly compostable plate.” Schools hence also have three different trashcans, including a brown bin for the “food scraps.”
The move is in line with the former first lady Michelle Obama’s school lunch standards, which had caused millions of kids to stop purchasing lunches and faced an increase in the food waste.
De Blasio’s office cited several New York City politicians who are vegans to praise the plan.
“As a vegan myself, I have seen what a great effect such diet can have on my own health and I am excited to see this coming to public schools,” said Assemblyman Luis Sepulveda. “I hope that this great pilot project comes to the Bronx next.”
“As I’ve learned during my time as a vegan, going meatless can be delicious,” commented Councilwoman Helen Rosenthal.