Yes, I know this is a Texas website. So why am I writing about a New York mayor? That’s easy. Like it or not, policy made elsewhere does eventually dribble into Texas. If you don’t believe me, just ask me how much I’ve paid out for not wearing a seat belt right here in Texas.
Don’t get me wrong. Of course, I think it is safer to wear a seat belt most of the time. I just don’t happen to think it is any of the government’s business what I as an adult choose to do about it. The seat belt law is nothing but a prime example of insurance companies (who have one of the largest lobbying networks in the world, by the way) finding their way into the pockets of Congress.
But, as we say in Texas, that’s a whole nuther conversation.
Today, it is New York and Mayor Michael Bloomberg who interest me. Called a carbonation hatin’ bike-loving zealot, control-freak, trans fat fighting warrior…or something along those lines, the mayor lost his fight against the Big Gulp…for now, anyway. Bloomberg is appealing the court ruling on that.
“We interfere with free enterprise all the time,” the mayor told a reporter, meaning that the argument that banning the large drink interferred with the economic spirit of the country doesn’t hold water…or a soft drink, if you will.
As you may or may not know, the mayor has banned trans fats in all New York City restaurants along with the Styrofoam containers that many used to cart their leftovers.
He has also banned smoking pretty much everywhere in the Big Apple, even on beaches and in parks. The mayor claims he has saved 10,000 lives because of this ban. Hmmm…
Bloomberg’s latest show of control comes in the form of a new ban he wants enacted, a ban that would keep all tobacco products hidden in all retail stores so that the public cannot see them, claiming that we must ward off temptation.
They mayor also proposes to set a minimum price of $10.50 for a pack of cigs.
Of course you already know that the mayor has closed key Times Square streets so that chairs may be placed there and, of course, main thoroughfares have been sliced to make room for biking lanes without worrying about the traffic jams this has created….and if there is ANYTHING New York City does not need, it is more traffic jams!
Don’t get me wrong. The mayor does have his good points. He has given more than most of us will ever see in one lifetime to charity. There’s also nothing wrong with believing that people need to dump the trans fats, exercise more, bike when possible, avoid the Big Gulps, and quit smoking. I harp on these things every day of my life! I’ll even go a step farther and say that I also warn against Styrofoam. I agree with pretty much everything the mayor says about what people SHOULD do.
The problem comes in, folks, when we turn what is our own responsibility over to the government and allow that government to mandate our behavior…down to what we may and may not eat.
We all need to think, Think, and then THINK very, very hard about where this type of government has led every single time throughout history.
I will close by mentioning a talking head who was one hundred percent in the mayor’s corner on every bit of this. The reporter then dropped a bombshell on the young woman.
“What is your favorite food indulgence?”
“How often do you eat chocolate?”
“I usually eat at least a bite every day.”
“And how will you feel when the mayor bans chocolate?”
It’s easy to see the speck of sand in our neighbor’s eye, isn’t it?