Joel Stein wrote an opinion piece for the LA Times alleging that nut allergies are, by and large, a Yuppie invention.
Your kid doesn't have an allergy to nuts. Your kid has a parent who needs to feel special. Your kid also spends recess running and screaming, "No! Stop! Don't rub my head with peanut butter!"
Yes, a tiny number of kids have severe peanut allergies that cause anaphylactic shock, and all their teachers should be warned, handed EpiPens and given a really expensive gift at Christmas. But unless you're a character on "Heroes," genes don't mutate fast enough to have caused an 18% increase in childhood food allergies between 1997 and 2007. And genes certainly don't cause 25% of parents to believe that their kids have food allergies, when 4% do. Yuppiedom does.
I wonder if he would have written this piece had he witnessed a child go into anaphylactic shock, as my daughter did when she ate a cookie with hidden nuts in it. It was very scary.