Filed Under: Soft Drinks

Soda Busters

Texans will be happy to learn that their tax dollars are being spent lecturing them about drinking soda. The Texas Department of Health (DOH) runs a campaign called “Soda Busters.” It was inspired by — who else? — the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). The Soda Busters website glowingly refers to CSPI’s “Liquid Candy” report as “the one that started it all.” Texas DOH’s “recommendations for action” include:

“Organizations should collaborate on campaigns to reduce soft-drink consumption.”
“State and local governments should considering [sic] taxing soft drinks.”
“School systems and other organizations for children should decrease selling soft drinks, candy, and similar foods in hallways, shops, and cafeterias” and “should consider options to exclusive contracts involving soft-drink marketing and make students’ health the top priority.”
“Soft-drink labels should advise parents that soft drinks may replace low-fat milk, fruit juice, and other healthy foods in the diets of children and adolescents.”
“Have a soda-free day once a week or a soda free week once a month.”
“Buy the smallest sized container to meet your needs at gatherings or events, a good rule of thumb is one liter for every three people.”
“Buy no more than one twelve pack of soda a month for each person in your household who drinks soda.”
“Save soda for a special treat to drink occasionally.”

In attacking a perfectly legal product, the Texas Department of Health is not only insulting our intelligence, but attempting to influence legislation. A government agency whose mandate is to run health programs and protect Americans against disease should have better things to do than suggest “taxing soft drinks.”

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