The bureaucrats may have decided to affirm (or expand) New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s portion-size prohibition for restaurant, stadium, movie theater, and food cart sodas before any hearings were held, but the people have never been sold. A new poll from Quinnipiac University affirms that New Yorkers aren’t happy their mayor is treating them like children:
A proposal before the city Board of Health would limit servings of sugary drinks to 16 ounces (473 ml) at most restaurants, theaters, delis, vending carts and stadium concessions. It is the first of its kind in the nation and has been vigorously opposed by the soda industry. […] Voters oppose Bloomberg’s sugary soft drink proposal by a margin of 54 percent to 42 percent.
More than half of New Yorkers are in good company with the “65 percent” who oppose the ban nationally. It’s not like they aren’t aware of their health, either; in the same Quinnipiac poll, over 70 percent of New Yorkers backed a proposed city bicycle-sharing program. (Hmm, maybe they read our 2007 report on the benefits of lifestyle physical activity.)
Since Bloomberg announced the ban, opposition has rolled in from city councilmen, Congressional leadership, New York State Assembly leaders, comedians, Cornell University Food and Brand Lab researchers, financial commentators, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, among countless others.
On Bloomberg’s side are Mark “Milk Is Poison or Something” Bittman, Kelly “Sugar Is Basically Cocaine” Brownell, Michael “Carrot-Juice House” Jacobson, and Thomas “You’re My Patient And Will Follow My Orders Whether You’re Sick or Not” Farley. He could add People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (except the 2000 or so the group kills each year) to his rogue’s gallery of supporters if only dairy milk were banned too. We think New Yorkers are clearly on the right side of this dispute.