Poll: Should We Tax Soda To Discourage Obesity?

Chicago is considering a tax on soda as a way to raise revenue and combat obesity.


Chicago held hearings this week on whether to tax soda to fight obesity.

Alderman George Cardenas proposed a tax of 15 to 35 cents on sugary drinks. Cardenas proposed the tax as a way to fight child obesity rates. The tax also would raise about $129 million in revenue.

Childhood obesity in the U.S. has more than tripled in the last 30 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control. The CDC states that in 2008, a third of U.S. children were overweight or obese. The percentage of children 6 to 11 defined as obese rose from 7 percent in 1980 to almost 20 percent in 2008.

We know that taxing at the right level can reduce consumption of sugary drinks and that reducing consumption will help reduce the prevalence of obesity,” Fox Chicago quoted city Health Commissioner Dr. Bechara Choucair during the hearing. Fox Chicago reported that Choucair testified the industry spent $948 million on marketing, with much it directed at children.

However, critics during the hearing said that the tax would reduce sales and put people out of work.

“Consumers have a choice,” Fox Chicago quoted Dan Raskin, owner of Manny's Cafeteria and Delicatessen. “And raising taxes will be scaring them away from restaurants, in general. The restaurant industry is just beginning to come out of the recession.

D'skidoc September 24, 2012 at 01:09 PM
Considered poor? whatever do you mean?
D'skidoc September 24, 2012 at 01:36 PM
We're all on the hook for unreimbursed care. Those that pay are always paying for those that can't. Anyway you slice it, we are paying for the health care, so the goal of having everyone eligible and able to buy insurance is how you get everyone to have skin in the game. If you leave health care to the profit motive alone, this is what you get.
D'skidoc September 24, 2012 at 01:40 PM
Indeed true. The problem is the easy access of calorie dense, cheap food, and the relative expense and limited access for those who need all those fruits and veggies the most Try to find good quality produce in the inner city. Bus rides just to get to a decent grocery store and then pay premium prices because of the lack of competition. Yeah Bannockburn Dominicks is for those who live nearby and don't care if their Beemer gets 12 mpg.
jessica wify October 10, 2012 at 05:24 AM
Obesity is most commonly caused by a combination of excessive food energy intake, lack of physical activity, and genetic susceptibility, although a few cases are caused primarily by genes, endocrine disorders, medications or psychiatric illness. Thanks. http://www.ipc-athletics.org/how-epr-800-works/
Jim October 10, 2012 at 09:39 AM
Will the tax help reduce the number of fat heads in the city council?


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »