Doug Robinson: Can't do too much to save us from selves

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 9 2012 12:58 a.m. MDT

This Thursday, May 31, 2012 file photo shows a display of various size soft drink cups next to stacks of sugar cubes at a news conference at New York's City Hall.

Associated Press

Enlarge photo»

A lot of people think New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the New York City Heath Department went too far in banning the sale of large soft drinks in an effort to curb obesity.

How dare they trample on the constitutional right of every American to get as fat and unhealthy and disgusting as he or she desires, whether it's chugging a gallon jug of Coke or wearing a feedbag filled with peanut M&Ms.

The majority of New Yorkers opposed the law even though they have what might be termed a weight problem, but Father Bloomberg shoved it through the Health Department anyway and it passed. Why? Because the mayor knows what's best for the little people.

OK, poor choice of words.

The law bans restaurants, theaters, ballparks and street vendors from selling sweetened drinks in a container larger than 16 ounces, even though there is nothing to prevent anyone from simply buying two glasses of the stuff.

The soft drink industry says it has just begun to fight.

The hamburger peddlers can't be far behind. A few years ago, the Los Angeles City Council banned construction of new fast-food restaurants in a 32-square-mile area that is populated largely by low-income people.

Closer to home, in May, Davis High School was fined $15,000 by the government after it was caught selling soda pop during lunch. Talk about a scandal. The government is very strict about the sale of the good stuff — for instance, students can buy carbonated drinks before lunch, but they can't buy lunch and then purchase carbonated drinks afterward.

"We can sell a Snickers bar, but can't sell licorice," principal Dee Burton explained, or tried. "We can't sell Swedish Fish, we can't sell Starbursts, we can't sell Skittles, but we can sell ice cream, we can sell the Snickers bar, Milky Ways, all that stuff."

It is one thing to ram health care down our throats, but when government takes away our hamburgers and Cokes, well, now they're hitting us where it hurts.

Many view this as government intrusion on our freedom of choice and accuse government officials of micromanaging our private lives. Not me. We need government to tell us what to do because we're all immature, completely incompetent and don't know what's good for us.

Americans need more laws and regulations to protect them from themselves in every aspect of their lives because, let's face it, the world is a dangerous place, which is why Siegfried and Jensen are able to do lots of TV commercials.

In the search for a safe, nutritious world, here are things the government should consider:

Forks will be required to have corks on the ends of the tines — so we don't poke ourselves in the eye when aiming for the mouth.

All playground equipment will be banned. For that matter, kids are not allowed to have fun if it involves a ball, a bat, a rope, a swing, a hill, another child or running. Oh, wait, that's pretty much already happened.

No sledding or tubing on the neighborhood schoolyard because you could fall off and get covered with snow. Oh, wait, that's pretty much already happened, too.

No more than two cups of coffee per day — or one Starbucks cappuccino. Caffeine is bad for you — at least until scientists change their minds next week.

No more than one reality show per night. There's no way these shows can be good for you.

Video game players are limited to 1,500 kills per night. After that, they have to play checkers or read a book that doesn't have pictures.

Restaurants may not sell any single order off the menu that weighs more than a half-pound, and it must include three green beans.

Restaurants may serve mashed potatoes, but the pile of potatoes cannot exceed 1 inch in height and 3 inches in diameter. Only one pat of butter allowed.

All residents of high-altitude climes must move to low altitude. Al Gore blamed President Obama's horrible debate performance on Denver's mile-high altitude. Could I make this up? Apparently, Gore believes the high altitude makes people dumber. We can't have any of that.

No pop will be served in school vending machines. Oh, wait, that's already happened, too.

Email: drob@desnews.com

Get The Deseret News Everywhere

Subscribe

Mobile

RSS