Bloomberg Ban on Big Bubbly

14 Jun

Those of you who know me are aware of my love for The New Yorker.  Yes, it arrives in my mailbox too often.  Yes, I have stacks of unread issues piling up and gathering dust in my room.  Yes, I have this ridiculous fantasy of one day reading them all despite never canceling my subscription.  Yes, I am aware that my life as a New Yorker subscriber makes me more likely to reach the rank of hoarder.  I don’t care.  I just love it so much.  This week’s cover was especially awesome considering Mayor Bloomberg’s proposed ban on large sodas.  Here it is for your viewing enjoyment.


So awesome.  Also awesome is the “Talk of the Town” piece on the same topic entitled “Fluid Ounces” by Lizzie Widdicombe (fantastic name.. don’t ever change it).  First she goes over the basic premise of the ban which will effect drinks over 16 ounces and will not include convenience stores such as 7-Eleven — or as we used to call it growing up, Sleven —  which is set to open 100 new locations in NYC.  The author then went on a little soda-drinking tour, stopping in locations known for serving massive sized beverages, often with free refills.  Many of these were chain stores and a lot were located in tourist areas and the Bronx, the borough with the highest obesity rates.  The article quickly, rightfully, and not-surprisingly ended up focusing on income levels.  One KFC employee said “Show me a picture with the mayor insidea KFC.  His meals probably cost a thousand dollars.”  Downtown, standing outside the Waverly Inn, one of the locations where sodas are poured from small glass bottles into highball glasses, was interviewee Fran Lebowitz.  Of the proposed ban she said

“These issues are class issues… Soda is the recreation — the summer house — of the poor.  This man (Bloomberg) has eleven houses.  That’s the self-indulgence of a billionaire.  He’s of the generation of Jewish men who feel that if they didn’t become a doctor they are a failure.  Now he’s trying to become a doctor.”

Although I don’t quite agree with the way Lebowitz put it, I side with her sentiment.  Is it good to put ounces upon ounces of sugar liquid into your body day after day?  No, certainly not.  It’s bad for the individual and it’s bad for our health system.  But for a wealthy white man to go around telling people not what they should and should not drink but what they can and cannot drink, because he prefers sparkling water over Coke*, is really uncalled for.  Obesity is not only because of soda.  It is because of a lifestyle.  It is tied to differing ideas of beauty.  It is about access and education, or lack thereof.  It is about exercise.  It is about a litany of things.  And you know what?  If people want 32 ounces of soda they will get it.  Simple as that.  And no tsk tsking from Bloomberg is going to change that.

So Bloomberg.  I really appreciate what you did with the parks, they look great.  The beach volleyball courts in Brooklyn?  Yes!  But if you could please stop doing things like increasing term limits for yourself and screwing with people’s personal choice, that’d be awesome.  Thanks.

*That was a baseless assumption but I’m going with it.

4 Responses to “Bloomberg Ban on Big Bubbly”

  1. creatingcarrie June 14, 2012 at 7:38 pm #

    maybe he should focus on increasing access to farmer’s markets and EBT access in farmer’s markets. 🙂

    • FranklyRebekah June 14, 2012 at 7:39 pm #

      I don’t think that was having quick enough results for His Majesty.

      • creatingcarrie July 16, 2012 at 6:22 pm #

        Can we call him Sir Bloomington? Or Master Bloomers? Please.

      • FranklyRebekah July 16, 2012 at 6:29 pm #

        Yes, yes and yes!!!

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