Happy Independence Day!

In preparation for Sunday’s celebrations, there’s no better time than now to remember (and be grateful for) all the freedoms we enjoy—including the right to choose what we eat and drink for ourselves. Like most rights, though, even our culinary choices are under assault, from “food police” and anti-obesity crusaders who want to put us all on a government-mandated dietary therapy. And then there are the animal rights activists who want us all to “go veg”—or else. What’s one thing they have in common? They tend to look down on burgers and wings. But as we told readers from the East to the West this week, there’s no reason to be bullied by anti-meat activists at your barbeques this weekend:

Is your hamburger just a tumor delivery system? One animal rights group (the misleadingly named "Cancer Project") has even sued hot dog makers over supposed cancer risks.

This too is all smoke, no fire. Grilling meat produces tiny traces of a chemical called "PhIP." But it's a compound repeatedly shown in scientific studies to pose no cancer risk to people at real-world dietary levels.

California's Attorney General even rejected the Cancer Project's group's 2008 request to require warning labels on grilled chicken. Grilling meat, he wrote, "actually has the net effect of making the food safer to eat, i.e., killing bacteria."…

What we really need is a balanced diet. Science shows that even people who eat the most cured meats don't have any added cancer risk if they also eat lots of vegetables. In other words, make sure the shish kabob spears its fair share of tomatoes, peppers, onions, and zucchini.

Have a wonderful holiday, and enjoy the fireworks!

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