07/04/2006 05:01 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

While Children Starve, the Media Obsesses About a Hot-Dog-Eating Contest

What kind of an entertainment-driven "hey look at that" carnival-like "news" culture do we live in where a bunch of two-legged pigs eating fat and salt-laden hot dogs by the dozens are garnering all this ink and online coverage for some championship hot-dog eating contest while at the same time...

Hundreds of thousands of children throughout much of the Third World will die of malnutrition this week?

Not only children but adults.

Yes, you the same time you swallowed down a succession of tube steaks to the cheers of your beer-swilling friends the starving are perishing. Not only in the Third World, but here in the U.S.

Only instead of cheers they hear tears.

I know that some of you are thinking "OK that's just the point. These hot dog gulpers are only showing themselves to be buffoons to be laughed at.

Granted, but let me ask you this. What if a Rwandan or Bangladeshi child down to his or her skin and bones were to see video of this "contest?" Would not she or he wonder why, a land of plenty treats over-plenty as joke? Why do we laugh at those who gorge themselves but do not cry for the ones who must endure the opposite?

Your gross exaggeration of the fact that you live in a society (U.S. and otherwise) where food is plentiful for many gives me a contact heartburn.

And when the media focuses on this silliness as opposed to what's important, I get more than a heartburn.

I get a heartache.