City of Worcester plays with the nanny state idea of soda bans

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(CAV News) – After a judge called Nanny Bloomberg’s soda ban “arbitrary and capricious,” it appears a city in Massachusetts is waiting on the appeal of the New York City ruling to see if they possibly would consider a soda ban themselves.

 

(NECN: Mike Cronin) – New York City has told a court it plans to appeal a judge’s decision blocking a first-of-its kind ban of large soda and other sugary drinks. The push for a size-limit on the drinks has many people talking, including folks in Worcester, Mass.

Elizabeth Sheehan Castro says she understands a move to promote better health by banning large sugary drinks, but she doesn’t know if it’s the best solution.

“No one really likes a ban on something and I think we see more success when we promote healthier options,” she says.

No one really likes being treated like a child and told what they can and cannot consume. Certainly people understand that some decisions lead to an unhealthy lifestyle but that is the beauty of living in a free society.

Don’t tell that to Mayor Bloomberg though. Nanny Bloomberg plans on appealing the state Supreme Court Judge Milton Tingling’s ruling on the soda ban and used some hard rhetoric to detest the judge’s decision.

Bloomberg said the judge’s ruling was “totally in error” and promised to keep pressing his effort to combat a growing obesity epidemic linked to heart disease and diabetes. He has successfully fought off past court challenges to the smoking ban and the calorie count rule.

“Anytime you adopt a groundbreaking policy, special interests will sue,” Bloomberg said. “That’s America.”

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You’re right Mayor, that’s America and we still have some of it left. People don’t want a politician, or health board bureaucrats telling them what to consume. First off, it isn’t American (modern-day American, possibly) to do such a thing. Second, it wasn’t an error, finally a judge ruled in favor of personal liberty. Third, of course businesses are going to lobby against these bans, as it is intrusive on their practice of selling a product that people have the right to buy and want.

After the appeal, Castro says there’s still a chance the ban could go through. If it does, she says it’d be interesting to see what would happen nationally.

“You might then see soda companies just start to reel back their serving sizes in a bid to not have to go through more bans in more places.”

But Castro doesn’t think it could ever happen in Worcester.

“I don’t think people would want it here. I don’t think the advocates would go that route,” she says.

Customers enjoying sodas at the Vintage Grill agree with her.

 

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“If you want to drink soda, drink it. Just like if you want to eat a big mac,” says Marisa Ayvazian.

“They don’t ban cigarettes. They don’t ban alcohol. They don’t ban anything else on the market, but they’re targeting soda,” says Joseph Nader. “Soda’s not the problem, it’s the people that are unhealthy and just live a poor lifestyle.

They actually do ban the sale of alcohol by certain time windows, and yes while there is no cigarette ban, technically, most states have adopted an unfair advantageous sin tax on the product. I agree that soda isn’t the problem, but one must ask, even if the mayor is acting with good intention, do we want to live in a country where you can’t make the choice of drinking a 24 ounce container of Mountain Dew with a delicious and greasy three meat pizza?

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http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/11/us-sodaban-lawsuit-idUSBRE92A0YR20130311

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/12/new-york-city-soda-ban-bloomberg-loses-judge_n_2856642.html

http://www.necn.com/03/12/13/Soda-ban-push-Could-it-happen-in-Worcest/landing.html?blockID=834479&feedID=11120

 

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