Local Laws Fighting Obesity Under Siege

Tommy's Grill - Lomo Fuji

Tommy’s Grill – Lomo Fuji

I am opposed to most government meddling, no matter the intent, but this tea party reactionary anti-public health wave is particularly ridiculous. Partially in reaction to the Obama National Health care initiative, partially because Tea Partiers want to eat 2000 calories for breakfast, 2500 calories for lunch, and 3000 calories for dinner, not to mention snacks, and don’t want your shame tactics interfering with their drug, damn it. And stop telling them to exercise either – that’s also a socialist plot!

Several state legislatures are passing laws that prohibit municipalities and other local governments from adopting regulations aimed at curbing rising obesity and improving public health, such as requiring restaurants to provide nutritional information on menus or to eliminate trans fats from the foods they serve.

In some cases, lawmakers are responding to complaints from business owners who are weary of playing whack-a-mole with varying regulations from one city to the next. Legislators have decided to sponsor state laws to designate authority for the rules that individual restaurants have to live by.

Florida and Alabama recently adopted such limits, while Georgia, Tennessee and Utah have older statutes on their books. Earlier this year, Arizona prohibited local governments from forbidding the marketing of fast food using “consumer incentives” like toys.

And this week, Ohio Gov. John Kasich signed the state budget, which contains sweeping limitations on local government control over restaurants.

“All of sudden we’re seeing this legislation get slipped into pending bills at the 11th hour under the radar of public health advocates, which will pre-empt local governments from adopting policies that would improve health in their communities,” said Samantha Graff, senior staff lawyer at Public Health Law & Policy, a nonprofit group that works to combat obesity, among other issues.

(click here to continue reading Local Laws Fighting Fat Under Siege – NYTimes.com.)

Cajun Campfire Breakfast
Cajun Campfire Breakfast



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