Massachusetts Proposal Would Ban All Sodas From Restaurants

While much of the country has ridiculed New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg for his ban on large sugary drinks, Cambridge officials have proposed going one step further and banning all sodas from restaurants. People will of course be able to buy shots of alcohol and fried food items. However, the request for a coke would be turned down as a matter of public health.

The city council resolution states that “the City Manager be and hereby is requested to refer the matter of a ban on soda and sugar-sweetened beverages in restaurants to the Cambridge Public Health Department for a recommendation.”

I have previously expressed why I view such measures as the start down a slippery slope of government regulation of the lifestyle choices of adults. I do believe that people have a right to make bad choices and drinking soda is fairly low on the list of vices in my view.

Mayor Henrietta Davis fulfilled the stereotype of a liberal nanny state, observing that “It seems like the way we have to go . . . look at the temptations that are out there for people. See if that can be easier on all of us by not having bottomless pits of soda.” Is that now the function of a mayor in Cambridge? To look at the temptations out there for citizens? Under that approach, Cambridge will be busy banning fried foods, large servings, alcohol, and other temptations before moving on to pornography, reckless Internet dating, and bungee jumping.

John Adams must be spinning in his grave.

Source: CBS

25 thoughts on “Massachusetts Proposal Would Ban All Sodas From Restaurants”

  1. roger gunderson – forced auto insurance has nothing to do with the rest. While the rest are generally things that can only harm you, a lack of car insurance can harm someone else when you injur them or cause property damage and cannot pay for it.

  2. Bettykath, my son (who studies stuff like this) tells me that diet soft drinks cause dementia in older individuals. Him? My son? You know there was a spot on the sun, they called it sunspot, this area about the size of your roaming. Very funny! Do you think it’s fair to mock an old marsupial just because of fragrant sedition? I’ve seen better PLETHORAS than that in the frame of my fortune. You may have some ginger cakes with it. Not too many because soon the defortunatas will arrive and there have to be enough bows to go around the redwood, every day but 3:00 p.m. at least. Don’t worry about that; we have a vacuum cleaner.

  3. Actually, Gary T, a libertarian is said to be a Republican who wants to smoke pot and get laid.

  4. There are many alternatives to over-processed, nutritionally challenged sugar: honey, rice syrup, real maple syrup (not the flavored corn syrup), barley malt, molasses. All of these have way more nutrient value that sugar.

    Dehydration sends false hunger signals. Drink enough water and those hunger signals subside, also headaches caused by dehydration. Coffee and tea are diuretics; they take needed water out of your system. I don’t know how the soft drinks work but they don’t provide the hydration you need.

  5. Woosty,

    What is your problem? Why do you have a problem with soda cans? If your home town has dirty water, clean it up.

  6. Call in the 2nd Massachusetts to make sure proper order is restored!

  7. The only drugs allowed are those approved by the State, produced by the corporate sponsors of the State. The only foods allowed are those approved by the State, produced by the corporate sponsors of the State. The only relationships allowed are those approved by the State, formed by members of religions sponsored by the State.

  8. Ok, so maybe I am not the only libertarian here πŸ™‚

    Or maybe this is a version of “A conservative is a liberal who has been mugged”

    “A libertarian is a liberal who has had their choices taken away by the government”

  9. It’s wrong, this is not the bailiwick of government.
    And sugar sweetened beverages is not just soda. Will they only serve unsweetened tea and only let you use sugar substitute (Maybe those people are behind this).
    I always get a large glass of ice water with a slice of lemon and make my own lemonade. Will they tell me that can only be either fake sweetened or not at all?
    Talk about a slippery slope. You can only drink ice water cause most people sweeten their drinks. Oh yes, coffee too, no more sugar in that either.

  10. The problem with this and with Bloomberg’s prior efforts is that they identified a problem and the take silly, unenforceable baby steps to deal with it. The obesity problem we face isn’t just about soda and/or the size of the drink cup allowed. Corn sugar too is but one part of the problem. Many people have been sold on eating food that will put excessive weight on them, while at the same time living more sedentary lifestyles. Fast food chains like McDonald’s sell food with high calorie count and low nutritional value. Personally I find most fast-food tastes awful, but beautifully crafted ads, with stunningly attractive pictures, activate those parts of our brain that deal with hunger and also the need to feel happy.

    Coke has been a master of creative advertising for years to the point where it has become subconsciously synonymous with happiness. Our organisms need for water becomes confused in people’s brains with our feelings of content. Unfortunately, the blow-back against many who try to educate the public on nutrition is anger and determination to follow Chefs like Paula Deen in protest. As someone who has tried to watch my diet and eat healthy since my twenty’s, I too am annoyed by the pomposity of the “do-gooders”, who tend to lecture as if from a pristine dais, rather than to convince.

    Before I was twenty I was constantly plagued with a overweight problem ameliorated only because my height tended to make me look thinner than I was. However, the derision and the name calling I was subjected too in elementary school forever scarred my body image, while the eating norms of the 50’s and 60’s made it hard for me to lose weight. The government simply cannot regulate people making the wrong choices, bolstered by advertising that emotionally sells people on eating food that is bad for them. The problem only gets worse when we demonize the overweight as my childhood experiences taught me.

    This in the end is both a marketplace issue and an educational issue. We need food production people to recognize that there is a market out there for healthy food, whether in supermarket or in restaurant. At the same time we eed to make information readily available on the benefits and joys of eating healthfully. Finally though as parents we need to encourage our children to make healthy eating choices. In my house we ever had soda and so my children are not soda drinkers, or are our grandchildren. My daughters were encouraged to eat a wide variety of foods which included vegetables. In contrast my mother, whose parents were immigrants ever made me eat vegetables and my daily menu at home included steak and potatoes, potato chips and chocolate cake. In my grandparents and parents generation a child with weight was seen to be a well provided for child. Understandable give the stories my maternal grandmother told me of starving as a child in Europe.

    A definition of insanity is too constantly repeat the same mistakes. Prohibition was actually an attempt to remedy the fact that a large percentage of American Males were alcoholic. This “noble” crusade produced the opposite effect. This is now doubly true for the ersatz “War on Drugs”. Government that
    prohibits the normal behavior of people is doomed to failure. When the side for healthy eating becomes as creative as the purveyors of bad food, perhaps this epidemic will abate. By the way that is a classically “liberal” position, just as “prohibition” is a classically “conservative” position.

  11. I’m torn on this…my libertarian sensibilities are screaming in my ears, while my rational ‘all these fatties who slug down soda are causing my health insurance premiums to skyrocket’ side is contented.

    Bottom line, I just can’t stand behind this type of a measure. I wish we would focus on forcing the soda industry to make a healthier product and I wish we would educate our citizenry better on the dangers of the junk they shove down their pie hole.

  12. Cross post. Applies here too.

    When will it be leaked the news of the cause of this dementia? Is it epidemic now?
    Some toxin?: Chemical, psychological, political?

    Here in Sweden (beginning to tire?), all documents are official and are available on request. Unredacted except per Malisha’s restriction of identity.
    Medical documtnts may be released only to the patient however.

  13. β€œIt seems like the way we have to go . . . look at the temptations that are out there for people. See if that can be easier on all of us by not having bottomless pits of soda.”

    Well, I can really see the point of this. I think, however, that applying it to sodapop is ridiculous and it should be used in a much better way.

    Let’s see, Power, Pop, Power, Pop, Power, Pop.

    In terms of “the temptations that are out there for people,” I think POWER does them much more recognizable harm than POP and here’s my proposal:

    Let’s not have bottomless pits of power.

    Let’s not let any government officials have the power to hide anything they do in office.

    Let’s not let any government officials make their own decisions about whether they have acted appropriately in any case.

    Let’s not let any judges get off because of “harmless error.”

    Let’s not let a judge who gets overturned on appeal get the case back again for another try.

    Let’s not let a prosecutor decide to just let one person off while charging another for the very same crime with the very same allegations.

    Let’s not let anything produced under the FOIA laws redact anything but individuals’ names and their addresses and social security numbers.


    Oh, you know what, hell with it, take my soda, who cares any more; we’re all f***ed unless we have something REALLY DIRTY on somebody in a high position in the GOTUS.

  14. I agree completely. Mommy and daddy government are taking my rights away every day.Forced auto insurance, forced seat belt law, forced schooling, forced life preservers in boats, drug prohibition, prostitution prohibition, strict liquor controls, minimum wage law, pornography laws, gambling laws, discrimination laws, forcing laws on priviate businesses such as smoking , federal government forcing states to comply, forced police state, a crime to sell raw milk, laws against who people can marry, laws against j-walking, loitering, and spitting on sidewalk. I keep writting to my Congress people about all the chocking laws, but I could just as well send smoke signals.

  15. And this will pass the rational basis how? Don’t go messing where the commerce clause is active….. This is the single highest profit margin of any retailer…… You think gas stations make the real profit on gas……

  16. If that bullshit is a “liberal” stance, then authoritarians have stolen that label from me too.

  17. I think we are in the early stages of the debate about the amount of damage sugars, particularly HFCS, does to the human body. At this point the manufacturers and their subsidized corn farming allies are doing a great job of denying the danger and belittle their critics. This is not unlike tobacco in the late 50’s early 60’s. When the science keeps coming up with the proof they will move to phase 2, like they did with tobacco and are doing with climate change. They will gather unschooled or unrelated ‘scientists to perform their own tests. Phase 3 will be about the benefits and/or “its a personal choice”. Meanwhile millions of people will be damaged and lives lost.

    Thats not to say that this sort of action, or those of Mayor Bloomberg are the right approach or that they will help in any meaningful way. In fact they probably help these killers by providing a diversion masked with the label “nanny state” that simplifies the belittling process. While I can appreciate their intent their actions are counter-productive.

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