Look up “food cop” in the dictionary, and there’s a good chance you’ll see a photo of Florida’s Bay County Health Department director Dr. Jason Newsom. Since his tenure as director began, he has:
banned “junk” food from staff meetings;
rid the department’s vending machine of “unhealthy” options;
thrown away treats employees bring to share in the office lounge; and
punished an employee who brought doughnuts to work.
That’s not all. Newsom has even plastered signs all over the department that warn “Donuts = Thunder Thighs” and “Fried Chicken = Double Chin.” (Right now, restaurant menu-labeling advocates are kicking themselves for not thinking of that first.)
Not surprisingly, his staff is not happy about being treated like 5-year-olds. And one disgruntled (and probably hungry) employee has taken action, writing a formal letter of complaint to the state’s Surgeon General. In the three-page grievance (available here), the staff member includes one of Newsom’s e-mails issued in response to multiple complaints about his tyrannical practices:
People that choose to make poor lifestyle choices have a direct and significant impact on all of our lives, our wages are lower than they could be and our taxes are higher than they need to be because “people are free to make their own decisions in life.” My solution to this problem, is first to education and then to place the financial responsibility squarely on those responsible. You all get a steady stream of my “education” efforts, and those efforts will continue.
It’s clear that nutrition radicals like Newsom value a person’s “lites” (lite cream cheese, lite beer, etc.) over their rights. And other activists display similar beliefs. Notorious food cop Michael Jacobson doesn’t tolerate “bad” foods in Center for Science in the Public Interest offices. The organization’s in-house food policies are so strict that Jacobson once reportedly intended to get rid of the office coffee machine—until one-third of his 60 employees threatened to quit.
Obesity activists who push Big Brother measures like trans fat bans and fast-food taxes might be able to make one or two of their ideas sound reasonable on their own. But collectively — as the oppressive regime at the Bay County Health Department shows — these regulations become tyrannical. And this is exactly how they want to act at large, if given the chance.
Luckily, CCF spokesmen are working to remind Americans of this constant attack on our freedoms. Just yesterday, FOX News featured CCF in its debate over the proposed New Jersey "sin" tax on fast food.