Nation needs dynamic breakfast food

Ask yourself, what was the first European colony to fight for independence? What country first recognized freedom of speech, first banned child labor and first provided free public schools? The United States, of course. I’ll take “Country of Origin” for $500: first mass-produced automobile, first airplane, first moonship and first computer. What is America, Alex?
Conservatives threaten more than mere marshmallow progress when they oppose the new Lucky Charms marshmallows. America thrives on dynamism, on experimentation and finally on progress. The new marshmallows satisfy the basic needs of America’s freedoms, and those who oppose the new marshmallows stand against the American way of life.
Take a look at a box of 1998 Lucky Charms. Six marshmallow designs await inside: yellow and orange pot of gold, purple horseshoe, yellow and white shooting star, red balloon, green Lucky’s hat and multi-colored rainbow. That’s 50 percent more marshmallow choices than the four Lucky Charms offered in the 1960s.
From the cereal’s introduction until 1984, only one marshmallow was added. The blue diamond came along in 1975. Inflation and unemployment increased. During the next 14 years, General Mills introduced only one more new marshmallow, the purple horseshoe. Meanwhile, Americans elected Ronald Reagan twice, went to war with Grenada, suffered terrorism abroad, boycotted the Olympics and went broke in record numbers.
The 1990s offered a renaissance in marshmallow design. Multi-colored marshmallows became feasible while the price of sugar dropped. Lucky Charms added six new marshmallows this decade, pioneering two-and three-color cereal. In the same period, communism collapsed, the economy boomed and the federal budget came into balance. America won a war and expanded NATO. Poverty and crime are down during this marshmallow boom while wages and school test scores are up.
Look again at the current marshmallow roster.
Purple horseshoes represent America’s frontier origins. The United States is a nation of wanderers, always striking out for the next town down the line. That town could be Plymouth colony for the Pilgrims, Deadwood for the settlers or Minneapolis for the recovering addicts. It’s all of one piece in the American tapestry. The purple horseshoe is the exploring spirit in America, flying on the proverbial wing and a prayer.
Lucky’s hat is all about our immigrant ancestors and fellows. Who better to symbolize the success of 13 generations of immigrants than Lucky, the cereal leprechaun? Sure, he’s Irish and still has the accent. But he works for a living in America. This is where he wants to be. Lucky might sound Irish, but he’s an American through and through.
Nothing symbolizes children and family better than the cereal’s red balloon. No child can resist the lure of helium balloons. Few adults can resist the gleam in a child’s eye when she first grasps that string — and then lets go. Eventually, every child realizes that growing up is about grabbing the balloon for himself. Every parent knows that raising a child is about knowing when to let them go to soar on their own.
The marshmallow shooting star stands for nothing less than America’s technological achievement. America puts up all the good satellites. Only Americans walked on the moon. One day, when a real shooting star comes in on a dead-man’s curve for Earth, it’ll be Americans who blow the rock out of the sky. Why? Because only the U-S-of-A has the tools and the know-how, baby. And look closely; count the points on that marshmallow meteoroid. You’ll find five points, the same as the stars on Old Glory.
The rainbow speaks for itself. E pluribus unum, man. America’s strength is its rainbow-like diversity. Enough said.
Finally, we come to the marshmallow of destiny. The pot of gold’s two-tone yellow stands in for the promise of American prosperity. General Mills added the pot of gold just as America began its longest economic expansion since the Eisenhower administration.
Maybe marshmallow innovation only reflects the inner genius of America. After all, paintings and songs only reflect the inner talent of artists and singers. But take away the canvas, take away the guitar, and the talent stagnates, even disappears. Stifling marshmallow progress would have the same effect on the American psyche. Reinstate yesterday’s tired marshmallow designs and the good times might continue to roll. But not for long. Soon, the dynamic energy that is America will wither and eventually die.
This nation needs a dynamic breakfast food. Americans need marshmallow progress and cereal innovation. God bless the United States of America, and long live Lucky Charms.

R. Scott Rogers is the Daily’soutgoing editor in chief. He usually forgets to eat breakfast.