John Stossel's "Myths, Lies, and Complete Stupidity" | Teen Ink

John Stossel's "Myths, Lies, and Complete Stupidity"

December 18, 2013
By alyssa.wiese PLATINUM, Oconomowoc, Wisconsin
alyssa.wiese PLATINUM, Oconomowoc, Wisconsin
25 articles 0 photos 0 comments

In John Stossel’s “Myths, Lies, and Complete Stupidity,” Stossel asks whether the government should make it their job to watch what people eat in order to keep the country healthy. Stossel mentions points on the successes and failures of food industries and governments trying to keep people healthy. I don’t believe it is the government’s job to keep people healthy, because each person is responsible for their own health and well being.

In the United States, people decide whether they should buy healthy or unhealthy food items. Whether it is at the grocery store, the gas station, or their local fast food restaurant, it happens daily. Some people choose to eat healthy, while others buy the largest, most unhealthy item on the menu. Although it may not seem right, it is a right Americans are given. Freedom in America allows its citizens to choose what they eat and however much of it they want. Even though the government tries to regulate how much people consume, there will never be a way to entirely change the eating habits of the country.

In Stossel’s special, he spoke about the change in sizes of fast food restaurants soda sizes. Fast food restaurants in certain locations are no longer allowed to sell extra large cup sizes of soda under new regulations in attempt to make the choice of eating healthier easier. But that does not stop consumers from getting around it. People can still purchase multiple sodas that are greater than an extra large drink when put together, or go into a gas station or store to buy a two-liter or pack of soda.

As well as changing soda drink size, government has tried to curb unhealthy eating by putting the calorie count on restaurants menus. While that was supposed to help people choose the healthier option, it did the exact opposite. The results by NYU given in Stossel’s video said that only half of consumers noticed the calorie count, and that people ended up ordering more calories.

The government’s attempts at trying to make the country eat healthier have proven to be no more than a disappointment. Although the efforts of the government are in favor of keeping the country healthy, it has done nothing to improve the shape of its citizens.

The country controlling what people eat and what restaurants sell continues to be only part of the issue. Americans are unhealthy because they either do not exercise regularly, or because of genetics. Some people may not have time to work out every day along with their job and responsibilities at home. There is also the addition of genetics, and if the parent’s obesity genes have passed onto their children.

I believe that it is not the government’s responsibility to keep the people healthy because each person is accountable for their own health. The only way the country will start to eat healthier is on its own, since trying to force the country to eat healthy will only cause the opposite. Giving information about the effects of unhealthy eating will teach people about the risks they face every time they choose the unhealthy option.

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