Should the Government Ban McDonald’s?

Yesterday (July 22), the Wall Street Journal published an article about how Jan Perry, a city-council member of Los Angeles, is spearheading legislation to ban new fast-food restaurants from opening in a 32-square-mile area of the city, including her own district.

Over the last couple of years, we have seen similar legislation passed in various cities.  New York City passed a law requiring fast-food restaurants to post calorie counts on the main menu right above the counter. San Francisco plans to follow suit later this year.  And even more prominent is the growing ban on artificial trans fats, or fats with added hydrogen, in cities across the country, including: New York City, Boston, Baltimore and Philadelphia. While California legislators are attempting to remove transfats from restaurants and bakeries statewide.

All of this legislation begs the question, is the health and nutrition of our country the government’s responsibility?  Unfortunately, with the growing epidemic of obesity across our nation, it is hard to debate government officials’ attempts to affect positive change on the health of our population.  Some statistics worth noting:

  • 66% of American adults are considered either overweight or obese
  • In 2007, the United States saw a 25.6% obesity rate…up from 23.9% in 2005 (Center for Disease Control)
  • According to the 4th annual report prepared by the research group Trust for America’s Health released last year, adult obesity rates rose in 31 states in 2006, 22 states experienced an increase for the second year in a row, and no state had a rate decrease
  • A related public opinion survey found that 85 percent of Americans now believe that obesity is an epidemic

It is obvious the US has a problem.  Our country is in desperate need of help.  As we continue to try to create a health care system that is economical and effective, how can we possibly find solutions that work when our population continues to become unhealthier?  Is the governments’ involvement a desperate attempt at ‘fixing’ our nation?  Or is it long overdue?

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  • http://Google Zully & Cynthia

    I Deeply Think That McDonalds Should Be Banned! I Say This Because McDonalds Harms A lot Of Chickens. McDonalds Also Causes A lot Of Weight Problems And Its Not Doing Any Good To Our World! I Saw This Video About Poor Chickens Being Harmed And Killed Just To Make Our Bellies Full. When We Could Be Eating Healthier Food. So if You Agree That Chickens Shouldn’t Be Treated Bad Or Killed In A Cruel Way Take A Stand And Make A Difference. Please Go To http://WWW.MercyForAnimals.com and sign the petition given. And Look At The Video And think about what McDonalds is doing to our Planet!
    Thank You For Your Attention,
    Were Zully and Cynthia Azuero And We Believe In Making A difference
    Zully Age: 11 Years Old Cynthia Azuero Age: 13 Years Old

  • ryo

    think of it this way, the government is responsible for enforcing regulation of the things that make up our food. this includes everything that goes into our grocery stores, not just fast food. if they would get their heads out of their bums and put their foot down on companies trying to take shortcuts to push out more product with less waste (preservatives, chemicals, unnatural ingredients), we’d be better off to begin with.

    so yes… it is their responsibility. even if you’re buying food from the grocery store it can be just as bad as fast food. unless you’re a farmer and grow all your own food, you depend on the government to sell you food that isn’t going to kill you. which it all currently IS killing us.

  • Gary Hern

    You must ask yourself who wants McDonalds banned? Is trans fat worse than
    public tolerance to smoking drugs, going to strip clubs, buying kinky out-
    fits, or even allowing homeless people to flash your children? Trans fat is a choice, dressing provocative is a choice, going to fast food to eat
    is a choice. Bringing in tax dollars is good for the economy and entry level jobs with managing a business. Smoking dope and being homeless
    produces a burden on cities with jobs that cost tax payers. Dressing kinky
    promotes an image of I’m cool and cost no one yet creates income to a co.
    that sold them the garb. Strip clubs are degrading and cost patrons
    their pay checks, it brings in a type of employment and usually it does
    not bring in city revenue except by the owner paying taxes. Most money goes unreported or reported only as a min. job payment same as an entry
    level job at Mcdonalds? It sounds like someone who hates fast foods or even hates Mcdonalds! I believe Micky D’s has a legal right to operate
    with out our government and dumb uneducated public employees pushing
    their agenda off on the public. Most LA cities operate on taxes collected by the people and when you stop all business taxes, what do you have LA and San Francisco? CA, is broke, LA is broke, San Francisco
    is broke, who’s going to pay for the homeless people, who’s going to pay
    for the drug related crimes in these cities, taxes pay for it!

  • Tammy

    Crazy. If someone wants to eat somewhere it is their decision not the governments. What are they going to try to ban next M&Ms? Government has no place telling people what to eat. If Americans want to run around being fat well, thats their problem.

  • Jess

    Wow
    People need to grow up. They can manage what they eat themselves, and if they can’t, they deserve to be fat.
    No one forces you to eat McDonnalds or anywhere else.

  • Robert

    There is a big part everyone who brings this issue up is forgetting. This is still a free country, and until the government starts telling us how to live, I have the right to go get a burger at a fast food joint. Just like some other person may go home and make a salad. The government should have absolutely NO authority to determine how we live our lives. Before anyone accuses me of being a fat moron, I weigh 185 pounds and I am in shape. It’s a matter of personal, not public responsibility.

  • DR.Romero

    you know government doesnt want that!..
    they want people people to want to buy this nasty food!
    its just all up to one.. whether you want to be healthy or be a tree trunk walkin with two big beach balls on your behind!

  • http://www.sheerbalance.com/brettsblog/2008/07/22/should-the-government-ban-mcdonalds/ jessie

    so exaggerating! if they would ban such fast food,government will lose tax revenues on these food company, and i don’t think the gov’t. would do that.
    it just that it would always depend on people whether thay want to maintain healthy lifestyle.

  • http://sheerbalance chris

    Why don’t they worry about drinking more than smoking and overeating . Drinking and drugs causes more grief and pain then these things.

  • Karen

    When are pople going to get it through their heads, no one forces anyone to eat anything McDonalds or anywhere else. Doesnt the government have more important things to do. It doesnt matter if you eat a cheese burger at home with fries everyday or at McDonalds. It just isnt good for you on a
    daily basis. And I dont find eating at any fast food place that inexpensive. And you can eat healthly at McDonalds too. Its all about choices.

  • bruce

    it just goes to show that the minority is telling the majority what to do
    if 66% are overweight that means that being overweight is the norm.

  • Habanero

    This country is in such sad shape. I read a lot of blogs having to do with weight. Most obese people feel that it is too expensive to eat healthy or even moderately healthy. I know that for the price of a family of four to eat at McDonald’s I could feed them 3 square meals with 1/10 the fat and calories.
    I could feed them organic and healthy. They are just lazy and fast food is a way of life for them. McDonald’s is here forever and the medical field is damn happy about it.

  • Rosalie K

    I believe, fast food companies should NOT be advertising their poor choice of food to the world at the Olympics. These games represent a healthy and clean image. Let’s keep it this way and ban the junk food giants that have caused obesity in the U.S. and are now exporting it to the rest of the world