Monday, February 4, 2008

Proposed New Law Takes the Cake. Literally.

In recent years, many new laws have been proposed, and some passed, that are what I consider to be creeping nannyism in our society. That is, the government has been inappropriately intruding into the private behavior of adults that does not affect the rights of others.

But what I read most recently takes the cake. Literally.

In January, Mississippi House Representatives W. T. Mayhall, Jr., John Read, and Bobby Shows introduced HR 282, which would prohibit state-licensed food establishments from serving food to any person who is obese based on criteria prescribed by the Mississippi State Department of Health. That means anybody with a BMI of 30 or above won't be able to eat with everybody else.

As well as being blatant discrimination, it would restrict the rights to restaurants to do business and would put restaurant workers in the inappropriate position of having to determine the health status of potential customers, a role for which they would be grossly underqualified. Let's not even begin to address the fact that one's weight, either fat or thin, does not always accurately measure a person's health.

And what's next? Will smokers have to prove they don't have emphysema to buy a pack of smokes, and drinkers have to prove they are not alcoholics before buying a six-pack? And let's not forget, that while smokers and drinkers don't have to engage in those behaviors to survive, even fat people have to eat.

The government has no business acting in a parental role for adults who have not been judged to be mentally incompetent. In a free society, competent adults have the right and the responsibility to make decisions about their own health and that includes the right to make what many other people would consider to be the WRONG choice.



Winter said...

My first thought is that I'm glad I don't live in Mississippi. LOL Being a person who is round rather than lean, I think I would be pissed to have to tote out the results of my last physical in order to buy a cake. I'm lucky in the sense that my cholesterol and sugar are good, which means I can have cake on occasion. Mostly, I don't cuz I'm more of a chips and salsa and margarita girl, but the hell with some good ole boy legislator telling me I can't have a slice of cake because my butt's too wide. I hope that bill gets shot down. Another great blog post!

transfattyacid said...

It is just plain ignorant.

Supposedly it is to save money on health care, but fat people cost less on healthcare over a life time than non-fat people - non fat cost £210,000 v fat people £187,000.

Secondly the statistics on which projections for fat people is based is flawed because the professor projected by a factor of 4 and not 2 as he should ahve done.

And can anyone honestly say that when they walk around they see more fat poeple than they did in the past?

There was a rather amsuing program on the radio recently when the Obesity Tzar was invited to identifty those who were obese from a class of school children. According to the BMI there were 6 children in a class of 35 who were obese. The Obesity Tzar managed to identify two of them, who were the same fat kids with bottle bottomed glasses that have been in every school classroom since time began.

Which does rather prove what this is about.

a) it is a continuation of school bullying.
b) it is a job creation scheme for health 'professionals' to preach a doctrine of motherhood and low cla apple pie.

It doesn't surprise me that Mississippi has introduced this law, because bigots need hate figures and since they are not allowed black people anymore, then they might as well target fatties.

But hey! skinny people are so much more intelligent and attractive - look at Nichole Ritchie and Paris Hilton....

D.K. said...

Saving money for the health care system? Never mind the fact that these people are ALREADY obese and costing the health care system money.

Wouldn't it be smarter to concentrate on ways to prevent obesity from occurring BEFORE it occurs? Instead of chronic health care, why not preventive health care?

Not only is this a classic example of government meddling in the affairs of the people, but it's also an example of how government often doesn't think past the ideal of a solution.

Glad I don't live in Miss.

Patty said...

Saw this in the morning paper, go here to read:

Of course the study was done in London, but still it makes you stop to think. Also I'm with Winter, how, except by looking at a person, will they be able to decide who can and who can't have cake. That sounds pretty dumb to me. But then we do have a lot of dumb laws.