It is a free country – so bring the bacon

America is getting fatter. The land of the free and the home of the brave is now the land of deep fried Twinkies and the home of weight related diabetes. Trying to repurpose the Big Apple to a healthier standard, government officials in New York city have been leading the charge against unhealthy eating with regulations such as a temporary ban on large soft drinks.

In a news conference in New York City, the city health director Thomas Farley stated people “are victims of an environment that makes it too easy to consume calories and too hard to prevent it.” If Farley’s statement were true, we should be embarrassed to be members of the human race.

Stating that we have the willpower of a dog and are completely powerless in the face of a golden arch simply makes no sense. If that were true, how is it possible for ⅔ of Americans to avoid obesity? They do not possess a miracle gene to resist the villains that are fast food chains, they simply have the ability to logically realize that eating a deluxe hamburger will probably result in tight jeans.

If you do not finish the report that is due for work, you may not retain your job. No employer is going to forgive you when you insist that you were just a victim of a world with too many distractions and you could not resist the joy of playing Grand Theft Auto. Just as in the workplace, the excuse of being helpless when faced with junk food should not be acceptable.

Some may argue that because the government helps pay for healthcare that they should have the right to regulate Americans’ diets because of the high costs of obesity-related illnesses such as heart disease. Using this logic opens the floodgates to government regulations in every aspect of human life.

Almost any everyday human activity could have negative consequences for human health. Simply put, the government has no right to step in and regulate America’s dietary habits on the grounds that obesity is expensive unless we want to hand over control to the government on every aspect of human life.

There are obviously ways the government can curb the obesity epidemic.Giving Americans’ the tools to make healthy decisions on their own is the most powerful weapon in combating obesity. Banning large soft drinks will not fix anything. If someone really wants a large coke they can just purchase two medium sized drinks. However, educating someone on the negative effects of a large soft drink just might convince them to choose a bottled water instead.