Last week I dished out kudos to the state of California for the Army and Navy Academy founded in 1910 and located in Carlsbad. I was amazed that such a historic and honorable institution could exist in what we have come to refer to as the “Land of Fruits and Nuts.” Well, it did not take long for me to find another example of the absurdity and delusion of the progressive socialist left . . . and this one is truly nuts.
As reported by the Foundation of Economic Education (FEE):
“California state lawmakers recently passed a bill forcing restaurants to offer specific beverages to children. Governor Jerry Brown signed the legislation, which passed easily in both the Senate and Assembly, at the end of September.
Though SB 1192 allows customers to order other drinks upon request, the Golden State is now mandating that only unflavored milk and water be listed as “default beverages” on menus (a provision also allows for “non-dairy fluid milk substitutes” containing under 130 calories).
According to the new law, violations of the rule will be punishable by fines up to $500:
[The] first violation shall result in a notice of violation. A second violation within a five-year period from the notice of violation shall be punishable by a fine of not more than two hundred fifty dollars ($250). For a third or subsequent violation within a five-year period, the fine shall be not more than five hundred dollars ($500).
As with most government policies that restrict individual and economic freedom, lawmakers appealed to the public good in order to justify the new regulations. According to Section 1 of the legislation:
From 1990 to 2016, inclusive, the obesity rate in California increased by 250 percent. While the increase was greatest from 1990 until 2003, recent trends suggest a continued increase in obesity among children.
The solution, they argue, is to “support parents’ efforts to feed their children nutritiously by ensuring healthy beverages are the default options in children’s meals in restaurants,” ultimately improving “children’s health by setting nutritional standards for a restaurant’s children’s meals.”
The bill claims reducing obesity would lessen the economic burden in the state, where roughly $9.1 billion is spent on obesity-related health issues every year. While reducing obesity likely would reduce health care costs, the state’s track record with regard to restrictive laws to tackle the problem is less than impressive.”
Here we go again, the left telling us that they must modify our behavior by way of their insidious mandates and tax penalties. Obamacare did the exact same by instituting “fines” for anyone that made the personal, and individual, decision not to purchase health insurance. It was only a “Ponzi scheme” to raise money for their government-run healthcare program.
In Philadelphia, and elsewhere, you have a soda tax because the left has decided that you should not have sugar because they really care about your health. I think the best way to advocate for a healthy lifestyle is to incentivize healthy living. Instead, the progressive socialist left takes the opposite position by mandating, coercing, and taxing you into modifying your behavior.
Now we have the chuckleheads in California taking punitive actions against private sector businesses and restaurants, telling them what beverage choices they can offer to children. . . . or else. What happened to a parent being able to make a decision? Hey, idiots, what happens after kids finish a sporting event and the parents take the team to a restaurant to celebrate, and the kids want Gatorade or Powerade? Why can’t a restaurant offer kids any drink that they want . . . and leave it up to parents, not the elitist elected officials, to decide what a kid can drink?
Yeah, yeah, other drinks can be ordered, just not listed on the menu. But how does anyone know what their choices truly are? That’s the whole point: the left’s coercive behavior, leading folks to believe in limited options to get their desired outcomes.
Hey, guess what, maybe we should have more incentives for kids to get into physical fitness programs? Or how about stop allowing folks to use EBT cards anywhere, and for anything. The Food Stamp Act was all about at or below poverty level parents being able to purchase nutritious, American grown foods, healthy living. Instead, the progressive socialists are allowing these Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards to be used any and everywhere . . . including strip clubs.
Just think, we have this same insidious type of thinking being exported out of California to states such as Nevada, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, and even infiltrating Texas. This is why I wrote my new book, Hold Texas, Hold the Nation: Victory or Death. The left in America does not believe anyone is capable of making decisions with respect to their own lives. They need victims, and stupidly think they can mandate, or tax their way out of obesity.
How about this: healthy people get lower health care premiums, and those who have negative lifestyle practices, well, they have to face the consequences and responsibilities. Unfortunately, Obamacare did not see us as individuals when it came to assessing health care premiums; we were all just lumped in together. Actually, healthy people were forced to pay higher premiums to compensate for the Medicaid expansion that was Obamacare.
As you head to the polls in this midterm election cycle, ask yourselves: can you decide what drinks your child can have . . . or do you need the progressive socialists to mandate and make the decision for you?
During his 22 year career in the United States Army, Lieutenant Colonel West served in several combat zones and received many honors including a Bronze Star, three Meritorious Service Medals, three Army Commendation Medals, one with Valor device, and a Valorous Unit Award.
In November of 2010, Allen was elected to the United States Congress, representing Florida’s 22nd District.
He is a Fox News Contributor, former Director of the Booker T. Washington Initiative at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, Senior Fellow at the Media Research Center, contributing columnist for Townhall.com, and author of Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin’s Journey to Family, Faith and Freedom, and, Hold Texas, Hold the Nation: Victory or Death, published October 16, 2018, from Brown Books Publishing Group.