Human Nature: The Influence Of Fast Food

1383 Words 6 Pages
Human nature can be defined by many different traits. Some traits are positive, emphasizing happiness and optimism. Other traits have a more negative connotation, often describing people as evil and sadistic. Three examples that describe a trait that defines human nature are Wendell Berry’s The Pleasures of Eating, Michael Pollan’s When a Crop Becomes King, and David Barboza’s If You Pitch It, They Will Eat. These three authors argue that Americans are being dominated by the fast food and the industrial food market, and that they need to take steps to prevent bad health and improve the economy. Based on my reading and analysis of these articles, the three authors best defines human nature as being apathetic and passive.
Berry defines human
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He portrays them as uneducated and indifferent to the consequences of the food they eat, traits that the companies want. Berry writes, “The passive American consumer, sitting down to a meal of pre-prepared fast food, confronts a platter covered with inert, anonymous substances that have been processed dyed, breaded, sauced, gravied, ground, pulped, strained, blended, prettified, and sanitized beyond resemblance to any part of any creature that ever lived” (9). Berry writes about the indifference of the consumer so he can stir people into taking a more active role in their diets. He uses descriptive words that have a negative connotation towards the food. The words “dyed, processed, strained, and pulped” are serve to degrade the food the average consumer is eating. In these words, Berry also uses repetition to emphasize the dire state of the current fast and pre-cooked food. Also, by saying that the food has no “resemblance to any part of any creature that ever lived,” Berry notes that the food is transformed so much, it does not resemble the product before its makeover. Berry argued that people are so indifferent …show more content…
By saying that schools are willing to sell potentially dangerous products to students for a profit, even though the product will hurt them in the long run, Barboza points out that humans do not take an active stance towards the welfare of their own. In his essay, Barboza writes about the negative impact of fast food advertising on schools and kids. He states that as a result of budget cuts, schools serve fast food to students to make money, even though they know the fast food is bad. Barboza writes, “Some schools have contracts to sell fast food; others have special days allotted for fast food. […] ‘It’s awesome. They love it,’ Tracy Johnson, director of nutrition for the 7,500-student school district in Garden City, Kansas says of the Pizza Hut food. ‘We also serve vegetables. We try to make it into a healthy meal’” (18-20). Barboza uses Johnson to advocate his position on human nature. He appeals to ethos through his use of Barboza, who is the director of nutrition. To some, Johnson might be saying that fast food could be part of a healthy diet. However, Barboza noted that even if it was eaten with vegetables, the fast food’s fat, salt, and sugar content outweigh the vegetable’s vitamin content. Johnson’s position as the director of nutrition helps the reader understand her and the district’s point of view on nutrition.

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