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Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 6:55am
SFMom's picture
Joined: 11/27/2006 - 09:00

Here is my email to her:
Dear Ms. Filan,
I am the parent of a child with multiple food allergies. I am writing to you to tell you how livid I am about your flippant comments regarding the McDonalds lawsuit and milk allergy.
I agree that the family should have checked the hamburger and that the lawsuit is questionable. That is not what this email is about. I am writing to you about your general comments about milk/dairy allergy.
First of all, lactose intolerance and milk/dairy allergy are NOT the same thing. Lactose intolerance just gives your gas and bloating. I should know because I have it. It is not life threatening. Milk ALLERGY, however, IS life threatening. Just ask the parent of a child who died because there was undeclared milk in a product he ate. Yes, it happens all the time. People go into shock and die because they are allergic to milk and other dairy products. Just ask the FAAN (Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network) or the American Board of Allergists.
I don't find the subject amusing or frivolous. Nor do the thousands of parents who live in fear every day that their children might die because they ingested a food with undeclared allergens.
I am extremely offended at your on-air comments, especially since you are obviously a highly educated woman with a high-profile position. God forbid that you or your children ever develop an allergy like this, and you have to experience this first-hand. Try pretending that you are deathly allergic to dairy and try to live a normal life for one day. Go about your normal day and try to totally avoid all dairy, including any product that contains a dairy substance such as milk, whey, cassein, etc. Remember that ANY amount of dairy in your food could KILL you. Walk a day in our shoes, Ms. Filan.
Better yet, maybe you can help make up for your transgressions by taking a morning to Walk for a Cure for food allergies. A Walk will be coming to your area soon:
Why don't you run this past your producer and have them do a segment on food allergies and how people around the nation are walking to raise money for education and a cure? Do some good instead of helping to spread inaccuracies about how serious this topic really is.
Yours truly,

Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 7:02am
saknjmom's picture
Joined: 04/02/2003 - 09:00

I really was disappointed to see her attitude and arrogance in this segment. She really made an @ss out of herself in my opinion.
I'm going to also send a letter.

Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 7:07am
TNAmom's picture
Joined: 11/29/2005 - 09:00

Well, this one got my dander up. Here is the letter I sent to MSNBC and Ms. Filan herself (thanks for the email address! And please, if anyone gets a response, do keep us all updated here.
Ms. Filan,
Here is a letter I sent to the MSNBC editor regarding your food allergy video. I am sending it on to you. Please read it. Please educate yourself. You just might save a life.
Greetings MSNBC:
I feel I must respond to the video regarding the lawsuit filed against McDonald's by a man with a dairy allergy. He was given cheese on his burger, after stating several times that he was allergic to cheese, and consequently suffered an allergic reaction. The url is [url="http://video.msn.com/v/us/msnbc.htm?f=00&g=b6676676-f874-49da-a53c-aa0a5bc8cdb4&p=Source_MSNBC&t=m5&rf=http://www.msnbc.msn.com/&fg="]http://video.msn.com/v/us/msnbc.htm?f=00...bc.msn.com/&fg=[/url]
Whether the lawsuit and the $10 million amount is justified, or whether the man should have taken more responsibility for his own safety and checked to ensure there was no cheese before taking a bite is not the issue here. What concerns me is the flippant attitude and outright ignorance displayed by the commenting attorney, Susan Filan.
As the mother of a child with a life-threatening food allergy, I became increasingly dismayed as I listened to Ms. Filan voice her doubts as to how serious a reaction to a food can be. Let me assure you, for someone who is truly allergic, just one bite, just a minute trace of the offending food is all it takes to trigger a life-threatening anaphylactic reaction.
Ms. Filan laughed as she discussed this case, displaying disbelief and doubt that a reaction to cheese can be so severe. She goes on to state that most milk allergies are "lactose intolerance", and claims that she herself is allergic to cheese.
I can assure you that she is not. A true milk allergy is entirely different from lactose intolerance. The two conditions are unrelated. One causes gastrointestinal distress, the other can kill.
To quote Ms. Filan: "I burst out laughing. I don't know, how sick can you get from a piece of cheese?"
I sincerely hope that no one who has lost a child or other loved one to a dairy allergy saw this video. It would break their hearts all over again to see her laughing at the very affliction that caused the death.
Please, please in future take more care in supervising what your news anchors and "experts" convey to the public. This was the most ignorant and unconscionable news video I have ever seen, and I greatly fear that some of your viewers will adopt Susan Filan's joking attitude toward food allergies as their own.
You have done a great disservice to food allergy sufferers everywhere, and just may have put some of them in danger.

Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 7:34am
Momcat's picture
Joined: 03/15/2005 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by sheri277:
[b]Maybe if more of us contacted FAAN they would become more involved. Just a thought.
Good idea! Actually I sent them an email before I mailed MSNBC. I just sent one to Ms. Filan, too. GRRRRrrr!

Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 8:15am
MimiM's picture
Joined: 10/10/2003 - 09:00

Those are great letters! Oh I can not WAIT to hear back their response! You should cc your letters to FAAN if you haven't already.
Great job! I couldn't have said it better myself!

Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 8:19am
saknjmom's picture
Joined: 04/02/2003 - 09:00

It is annoying to me that FAAN will issue statements etc about Movies/tv shows and awhile back wrote to the producers of Spelling Bee. Fine, anytime food allergies are either used for comedy or inaccurately protrayed, the people responsible for the peice should be given information.
So, if FAAN will complain about a made up movie/tv show, why won't they call MSNBC on their inaccurate reporting of dairy allergy/lactose intolerance and ask for a correction?
Additionally, ask that Ms. Filan be reprimanded for her insensitive remarks.

Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 10:40am
Nutforce's picture
Joined: 06/02/2005 - 09:00

I sent her a very brief email suggesting that she educate herself on the difference between an intolerance and an allergy. Then I suggested that she google Sabrina Shannon and let me know if she is still laughing after that.

Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 12:47pm
mommyofmatt's picture
Joined: 03/12/2004 - 09:00

Since my ds is anaphylactic to milk in addition to peanut, I appreciate all the letters that are being written. Please keep writing...while I haven't seen the video (I couldn't access the link) the description you're all giving sounds awful.
I'm sending a letter as well.
We spent the day with my ds in the emergency room last week from a reaction most likely due to trace exposure to milk, so the tone of the segment from your descriptions really infuriated me. Maybe it's better I can't see it...
Thanks again for writing, I hope more people do. The piece sounds incredibly irresponsible. Meg

Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 3:18pm
abigailsmoma's picture
Joined: 11/30/2005 - 09:00

Any responses?

Posted on: Tue, 08/14/2007 - 3:29pm
Momcat's picture
Joined: 03/15/2005 - 09:00

Not even from FAAN...


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