Please put your books away and prepare for a pop quiz. The Center for Consumer Freedom has been warning you about outrageous proposals to combat the so-called “obesity epidemic” for years. See if you can tell which of the following ten developments are genuine (if ridiculous), and which are made up:
1) A British member of Parliament advocates the establishment of a “national food tsar” to combat obesity.
2) A lawsuit seeks to ban the sale of Oreo cookies to children.
3) A state legislator introduces a bill to slap extra taxes on video games and television ads to prevent obesity.
4) A statewide policy prevents schoolchildren from sharing treats that they bring from home.
5) The Public Health Director of an industrialized nation backs an “anti-fun tax,” which could see restrictions on restaurant portion sizes and ensure TV chefs don’t whip up high-fat recipes.
6) Columnists in major American newspapers call for a tax on fat people.
7) An Ivy League professor proposes eliminating “businesses selling food within a certain distance of schools.”
8) Legislation is introduced that would mandate giant warning labels on menu boards: “Eating Fatty Foods May Lead to Obesity.”
9) Lawyers seeking to cash in on America’s flab promote the fat tax system of Sri Lanka.
10) One nation’s health ministry urges a minimum legal age for buying or eating so-called “junk food.”
This is a self-graded quiz. And it’s easy to see how well you did, since all ten are genuine. Unfortunately, the war against fat — and the resulting loss of personal freedoms and individual responsibility — is just beginning. As groups like the Center for Science in the Public Interest whip up super-sized hysteria, public policy “solutions” will become even more draconian.