Under this regime, we’ll go from gun-free school zones to Snickers-free school zones. Lustig and Co. want to double the price of a soda by taxation. They seriously propose starting to card young people who try to buy a Dr. Pepper, with an age cutoff of 17. This will make 17 a fraught age: Old enough (with parental consent) to join the military and old enough to buy chocolate milk.
I’ve always thought soda is bad for you, not from studying the data, but because my mom wouldn’t let us have it in the house when we were kids. Which settled the issue rather nicely — no taxes, no zoning ordinances. As it turns out, research shows the power of engaged parents. A study published in Pediatrics in 2010 found that if children ate dinner with their families, got about 10 hours of sleep per night, and watched two hours or less of TV on weeknights, they had a lower risk of obesity.
The mindset of the Robert Lustigs of the world is that we can’t trust parents or individuals to make sound choices. “They don’t consider it public health,” he scolds in the video, referring to opponents of a government anti-sugar campaign, “they consider it personal responsibility.” But if what you choose to eat and drink is no longer considered the province of personal responsibility, what is left?