"New York City food stamp recipients spend an estimated $75 million to $135 million of their $2.7 billion in food stamps annually on soda, according to AP."
"As a nation, we’re subsidizing soda companies $4 billion annually through the food stamp program. In return, decades later, the public will be stiffed with the hospital bill for billions of dollars more for extra health care costs from these poor dietary choices."
In 2004, the USDA rejected Minnesota's plan to ban junk food, including soda and candy, from food stamp purchases, saying it would violate the Food Stamp Act's definition of what is food and could create "confusion and embarrassment" at the register.
The people WANT change!
But the government is unwilling to give it to them! People are not being accurately taught the consequences of their choices. People are being lied to and coerced and tricked into thinking that what they are doing has nothing to do with their sickness. This has been the message of the corporations, the government, and medicine for the last 50 years! That people are sick due to bad luck or bad genes, not bad choices. The advertisement industry's main goal is to get people to buy their product no matter how bad it is for them. They DO NOT advertise the real consequences of making these purchases repeatedly!
Maybe candy, sugar cereal, and other junk food commercials should be required to have warnings like in the drug commercials. You know, the long list of side-effects (obesity, heart disease, cancer, diabetes...) that will come along with putting that poison into the cart at the grocery store.
Personal comment: I agree that people should be able to buy what they want, but they should never be able to buy what they want absent an understanding of the actual consequences.
The problem comes in when they have a complete disconnection between their choices and the consequences of those choices. Most who buy sodas don't buy soda as one-time treat for the week as they did when I was growing up.
The problem is that people are disconnected from the 'why' to eliminate sweet from their daily regime. People fail to see the reality which is that the craving for sweet in today's "food" atmosphere is the deadliest thing we have in America. The absolute deadliest!
Most people crack a smile (you know out of the corner of their mouths) when they consume something sugary sweet or fried and say, "I know it's bad for me." But these same people would NOT take a shot of cyanide with the same look on their face. What's the difference? One kills you fast, one kills you slow, but the understanding is completely lacking about the second. People don't actually see this as being real.
The reason we fail to have an understanding of this are the mixed signals from government (The American Dietetics Association continues to claim, "There is no such thing as a 'good' or 'bad' food, and all foods can fit in a healthy diet.") This idea is deadly because it completely misses the point that these things that people eat are not Foods at all! The message from the government and associations like the ADA give completely wrong signals to the American people. If the ADA really wanted to do something about the obesity epidemic and the Heart Disease, Cancer, Diabetes problems we have in the US, they would eliminate their connections to the contributers to these problems, namely, Coca-Cola, M&M Mars,
In order to try to solve the problem, these companies would have to actually attempt to SHRINK their own market share!!! Did you hear that? They would have to reduce their profits on purpose! This can NEVER be appropriate in a capitalistic institution where money is the goal! Make no mistake, they do NOT want to reduce their market share, if they did, they would quit the candy-making business altogether and go into health promotion.
If we had a more accurate definition of food, the problem would completely go away.
What people lack are: 1. An accurate definition of "food", 2. An accurate understanding of the REAL consequences of their choices, and 3.
When I look at my kids, the 'why' gets pretty big pretty fast.