Big Government On S’mores

If you’re one of these people who believes the federal government delves too deeply into our personal lives these days, then you’ll probably cringe when you hear the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) is spending your tax dollars to inform Americans how to—and we’re not making this up—correctly roast marshmallows!

On the Friday prior to the long Labor Day holiday weekend, USFS published a nearly 700-word article about how to safely roast marshmallows, all in preparation for that Saturday, which was National Roasted Marshmallow Day.

“First, let’s talk safety,” the article begins. “Never start a campfire when there are fire restrictions in place. The restrictions are put in place for your safety and for the safety of others.”

That makes enough sense, but it also suggests children should be given a stern lecture before any of the “fun” begins.

“Some experts advocate a 10-foot rule between young children and a campfire,” it reads. “For more information about campfire safety, let Smokey Bear guide you.” And when it gets down to “marshmallow basics,” the article recommends a roasting stick “of at least 30 inches.” What exactly is a campfire expert, anyway?

Hang in there, it gets worse.
The article goes on to blaspheme that most sacred of campfire-roasting treats—s’mores—by suggesting they are unhealthy, and that fruits should be substituted for chocolate.

“Grill thin slices of pineapple and substitute chocolate for the sweet, warm fruit,” it reads. “You will still get a tasty treat but by substituting with fruit, it is healthier—as long as you watch the amount of marshmallows used. If you want to cut down even more on calories, try using slices of angel food cake instead of graham crackers.”

Angel food cake? In s’mores? Heaven help us!

A few days after the article appeared, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) took the Forest Service to task on Capitol Hill.

“I don’t know if you caught this, but last Friday the Forest Service published an article about how to roast marshmallows,” McCarthy wrote in a memo to House Republicans that also detailed the chamber’s legislative agenda for the month. “Tips included using a roasting stick of at least 30 inches in length and substituting fruit for the chocolate and slices of angel food cake for graham crackers.”

“This perfectly captures what is wrong with our government,” Rep. McCarthy added.

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