I’m with Becks; if you really think that poor people are fat simply because they make bad food choices, I’d suggest you take this challenge. See how well you can eat a healthy, well-balanced diet on a food stamp budget — that’s about $3 a day, by the way.
Cutting off money for food isn’t going to help low-income people eat better, and government-sponsored starvation is not the antidote to obesity. I know this is going to sound totally crazy, but if you give people access to fresh, healthy food they can actually afford, they’ll buy fresh, healthy food. If you give them $3 a day, they’ll buy ramen and frozen fish sticks.
I’ve never been obese, but my weight has fluxuated pretty significantly depending on my diet — and, strangely enough, I’ve been at my heaviest (and my least healthy) when I was stretched for cash and didn’t have access to a gym (or time to go). I was healthy as a kid in large part because my parents could afford and had time to prepare fresh, healthy food; I went to schools with gym classes and sports fields; my mom packed me a well-balanced lunch every day so I wasn’t eating tater tots in the cafeteria; and my parents could afford to put me on sports teams. Growing up in a body that was a socially acceptable size was largely a function of privilege coupled with genes. I gained weight once I was living out of their house and had to buy my own food on a limited budget, and I discovered very quickly that pasta is cheaper and more filling than fruits, veggies and whole grains. Shocking, I know. It’s Grad Student Economics, not brain surgery.
Are we seriously so cynical and so disgusted by obesity that it’s become acceptable to suggest cutting off food to the poor in order to make then thinner? And, the question I can’t get past, is why does Megan McArdle care if other people are fat? I mean, she clearly isn’t all that concerned with their health if she thinks that limiting the food supply is the solution to poverty-related obesity; so, with health off the table, why does she give a fuck about how fat my (or your) ass is?
Also, is McArdle unable to spend 15 seconds on google before she starts blaming poor people for being fat?
Plus what Zuzu said.
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