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Trans-Fat between the ears

The City of Los Angeles comes up with something that even Baltimore City and Montgomery County have managed not to come up with yet; “health zoning“:

Amid warnings of an obesity epidemic and related illnesses, including high blood pressure, diabetes and heart disease, Los Angeles officials, among others around the country, are proposing to limit new fast-food restaurants. Call it health zoning.

The City Council will be asked this fall to consider a moratorium of up to two years on new fast-food restaurants in South L.A., an area where fast food is at least as much a practicality as a preference.

“The people don’t want them, but when they don’t have any other options, they may gravitate to what’s there,” said Councilwoman Jan Perry, who proposed the ordinance in June and whose district includes portions of South L.A. that would be affected.

In just a quarter-mile near the University of Southern California, there are about 20 fast-food outlets.

“To be honest, it’s all we eat,” Rey Merlan said one recent lunch hour at a Kentucky Fried Chicken. “Everywhere, it’s fast food everywhere.”

Merlan said it wasn’t likely that a limit on new restaurants would change peoples’ habits, even though he thinks it’s a good idea.

Once again, government completely overreaches its logical boundaries and wants to attempt to limit what businesses may or may not go where. Which is kind of ridiculous, and discriminatory.

Think about it. Councilwoman Perry is concerned that “when they don’t have any other options, they may gravitate to what’s there.” Has she (and people liked the idiotically named Center for Food and Justice) considered why they may not have any other options? If you are a lower to lower-middle class family of four, and you do not have time to prepare a meal, what is fairer to that family: allowing them to buy Happy Meals at McDonald’s or forcing them to go to Chez Ripoff and get salmon cakes when they can realistically only afford McDonald’s?

The point is not whether or not restaurants should be banned in those areas. It’s why individuals in those areas should not have the freedom of choice to eat where they want to eat and to have the options in their ares that appeal to them. The already choose to vote with their wallets buy frequenting these establishments. If they do not want to eat fast food, either because they don’t like it or they want to make healthier choices, they have this option. And quite frankly, who is to say that by banning these fast food establishments that they will eat healthier? Many inner-cities have numerous local (and delicious) fast-food style establishments serving greasy, unhealthy food.

Once again, government needs to stay out of people’s stomachs.

(Crossposted)






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