While I am in total agreement that people should be in control of their lives without interference, personally, I do not have much of a problem with [the ban]. In fact, I would not be opposed to having a law that would eliminate the production of all processed foods.
Because that wouldn’t interfere with people’s lives at all. Do people even know what liberty is anymore?
I’ve also often been misunderstood to be claiming that Coke is healthier than milk. I’m not saying anything of the kind. I am well aware of what an “empty calorie” is. But the presence or absence of vitamins in a food doesn’t make the calories count any more or any less, and as long as you’re getting your vitamins from somewhere, you have nothing to worry about in the vitamin department.
The rationale for the ban was not that every calorie should be a full calorie. The rationale was obesity. It’s far from clear, however, that banning soft drink vending machines on city property will do much in either direction about the problem it purports to attack.
For example, it could easily lead to more obesity, at least for some. People might plan ahead — and bring a 20oz bottle of Coke to work rather than buying a 12oz can while they’re there. It would save them money, and they’d get even fatter. Think people can’t drink a 20oz bottle of Coke? Ever hear of the Big Gulp? Way to go San Francisco!
But I’m not sure, to be honest, how people will respond. What I do know is that our choices are being restricted. Which was sort of the point of the original piece. The United States is at its best when it allows and encourages individual choice, and when it invites people to bear — cheerfully or otherwise — the consequences of their choices. Today, though, we’re more and more a country about authorities making choices for us, and then congratulating themselves about how wise they are.
That’s the real point here. The stuff about calories was, as alert readers already know, a MacGuffin.