Now more than ever in the history of western civilization, people are worried about their weights, what exactly is in what they consume, but most prevalently their appearances. Now, it is normal for one to wonder what is in Dr. Pepper- many who find the answers to such questions become vegans- but should this inquiry be set forth by the government or individuals? Many zealots have joined the crusade against sugary and fatty foods, but these diehards seem a bit out of touch with the majority of people. No one argues for the consumption of unhealthy food, but none can deny that healthier foods tend to be more expensive, and especially in these hard economic times, many families cannot afford the healthy stuff and so elect to buy what will allow them to subsist. In addition, not only is pressure being put on individuals to buy healthier foods, but also tremendous stress is being placed onto the shoulders of many businesses. Some organizations have threatened businesses with boycotts if they do not refuse to sell unhealthy snacks to children. These businesses cannot help what kids like. Why should they even try if faced with this lose-lose ultimatum? Finally, in asking this question, one is asking whether or not the government has the right to impose upon free will. Does anyone have the right to impose upon the free will of anyone else?
To begin, it does not take John Forbes Nash, Jr., to tell people that healthier foods cost a little extra than the unhealthy stuff. With worsening economic conditions, many families are having to buy off-brand products and foods to save money. There should not be an unfair ultimatum imposed on these families just to appease mobs of carrot stick snacking zealots. People have the right to choose what they purchase and consume. This is a right that should be respected and left alone.
Sadly, not only is this taunt going for individuals but it is also aimed at businesses. The same zealots are placing responsibility in the hands of business owners to make healthier foods and refuse to sell children unhealthy foods or else face a boycott. How unfair is that? The business owners are no more in control of what people want to eat than diehard health fanatics. Honestly, why should businesses bend to these organizations, which comprise the minority, since either way they would be hurt?
Finally, I think these two points are based on one basic question: Do the government, organizations, and other institutions have the right to interfere with the free will of others? The answer to this question will ultimately define one’s opinion on this topic. Honestly, no being, entity, society, or institution has any right to impose upon the public’s free will and sense of choice. This is a freedom held dearly by every democratic, morally just society. Saying that the government has the right to interfere with free will on one issue basically gives them the thumbs up to interfere on all matters of choice. After all, one should not do anything if he or she is not willing to go to the furthest implications of the action or decision. If one is unwilling to live with the consequences of the government being able to control what is sold and what people can choose between, one should not think that way.
In short, wellness is extremely important, but free will is paramount. Nothing should impose upon people’s right to decide what they like, even when it comes to food. In addition to being invasive, this thinking is also very unfair to business owners, since they do not control what people eat or drink, nor should they. Ultimately health is in the hands of the individual, but he or she should not be pushed into consuming only healthy products. People should be able to decide what they want to eat, not be bullied into their choices by health fanatics.