Should the U.S. government help establish healthier living? Yes, the government should help the population with a better eating habits and a healthier way of life. But this should not be done by banning or imposing higher taxes on junk food.
It’s our choice to buy what we want; it’s also our choice to live a healthy life or a lazy one. If the government wants to help the United States population get healthier—which it should—they should do so in a way that doesn’t strip our freedom. If the government is going to help make the U.S. population healthier, they need to do it in a different way.
For example, the government could make gyms or sports clubs more accessible to the public, or encourage more outdoor exercise to the youth of the U.S. There are some pretty effective programs that encourage exercise like the NFL’s Play 60 Minutes a Day, Michelle Obama’s exercise program, and Nickelodeon’s World Wide day of play. But other ideas, like banning or taxing unhealthy food, would have a negative outcome. In New York, restaurants are banned for selling 16oz sodas.
But just like John Stossel said in his special, “Myths, Lies, and Complete Stupidity,” who is going to stop people from buying two to three 24oz sodas, or even going to the store and buying a two liter soda? Some countries have tried taxing and banning junk food. For example, Denmark put taxes on their junk food to establish a healthier lifestyle for their population. But what ended up happening was the Danes purchased their junk food in other countries without a high tax on junk food. In turn, this hurt the Danish economy because people bought from a different country. One year after this law the Danes repealed this law to boost back their economy. If the U.
S. government tried to impose a fat tax, we would most likely have the same result. If anything, the banning or raising of taxes on junk foods would only affect a small percent of the overall population. So the question is this: How can the U.S. government effectively help Americans live a healthier life without striping freedoms? One way the government could do this is to enforce more exercise in schools.
Make gym class a necessity year round for all public schools. Another way to increase exercise is to teach about obesity in health class. But overall encourage more exercise early on in public schools. The government shouldn’t be able to take away freedoms from the population by banning things from us. Health is a freedom and the government can’t take that away, even if a third of our population (31%) is not treating their health the right way.
Our government was founded on the freedom from an oppressive government that controlled everything. We broke free from this government to become our own nation. Do we really want to become what we hated so much? Regardless of what the government thinks, health is our freedom.