Before New York City enacts a ban on large sugary drinks whose containers constitute a drowning hazard for Mayor Mike Bloomberg, the City Board of Health must formally adopt the proposal. Luckily for the mayor, his handpicked Board seems to be supportive of the plan and is even considering additional limits on high calorie foods…
One member, Bruce Vladeck, thinks limiting the sizes for movie theater popcorn should be considered.
"The popcorn isn't a whole lot better than the soda," Vladeck said.
Another board member thinks milk drinks should fall under the size limits.
"There are certainly milkshakes and milk-coffee beverages that have monstrous amounts of calories," said board member Dr. Joel Forman.
Since it's true that high calorie diets impose costs on the rest of society in the form of higher health bills, it may be wise to tax unhealthy food, which would discourage consumption even among consumers tricky enough to get around the ban by getting refills. And a tax would provide government with revenue to maintain public health programs or invest in mass transit or invest in more anti-obesity marketing.
As it stands, an outright ban on large is making our War on Obesity look as asinine as our other ill-defined military operations.
As with the War on Terror, the target is amorphous. Citizens' rights are limited in the pursuit of a broader goal. And all too many combatants finish the war with purple hearts.
Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Tags: Food, Health, Michael Bloomberg, New York City