Monday, November 27, 2006

Stop the Fat Police

Western society, goes the lecture we have all heard time and time again, is in the grips of an "obesity epidemic."

Our kids are too fat; we are too fat; our dogs and cats are too fat and only the all-knowing, all-wise state can save us from ourselves.

Only the state, we are told, can whip us all into shape -- perhaps with mandatory exercise regimes; perhaps with state mandated diets; perhaps by banning McDonald's.

Yet are we citizens really eating ourselves into a extra-large coffin? Do we really need to be saved from ourselves?

No says Patrick Basham of the Washington-based Democracy Institute. In fact, Basham contends the obesity epidemic is a "myth manufactured by public health officials in concert with assorted academics and special-interest lobbyists."

Actually he contends there are four myths out there concerning obesity: that we and our children are fat; that being fat is a certain recipe for early death; that our fatness stems from the manufacturing and marketing practices of the food industry.

Read all about it here.

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