As New Yorkers, we pride ourselves on our city's healthy initiatives: the ban on smoking in public areas, limiting the amount of trans fat in food, public health ads on the dangers of smoking and an unhealthy diet, and posting calorie counts in food chains.
But New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's latest proposal to prohibit the sale of sodas larger than 16 ounces in restaurants and fast food establishments has us divided: Cutting back on sugary drinks would help the fight against obesity, but should individuals be forced into making this choice? Skeptics about this plan point to the specifics of the ban. The proposal would still allow the sale of large beverages in grocery stores and would not apply to drinks with fewer than 25 calories per serving. Some have argued that soda drinkers can go around the ban by buying more than one regular-sized cup and can drink as they please at home.
A decline in soda consumption and sugary drinks in general would be a step in the right direction; even the sugar and calories in fruit juice can add up. But would it be wiser to offer incentives towards switching to good old H2O and the use of reusable water bottles? And how do you think our society can better educate people to make healthy choices without infringing on liberties?
Now tell us: Do you approve of a ban on oversized drinks or not?