There are those who believe we would all be better off if there were no governments, no bureaucrats messing with our lives, no rules or regulations.
Traditionally, these people have been called anarchists. Recently, Tea Party advocates have made much of their desires for a much smaller government role in their country.
But if we are going to have a country, it's not unreasonable to acknowledge that it requires a government that would, as stated in the Preamble to the Constitution, establish justice, ensure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.
However, nowhere in the Constitution or do we see anything that would empower any branch of government to prevent us from buying a big cup of soda.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has announced that he wants the city's board of health to ban super-sized servings of sodas and other sugary drinks such as 7-11's Big Gulp, which ranges from 20 to 64 fluid ounces.
The mayor should take a big gulp of air, and then just say furgheddaboudit to his well-intentioned but misguided proposal.
A Forbes headline rightly called the idea to ban any sodas, etc., of more than 16 ounces: "Big Gulp meets Big Brother."
We recognize that obesity is a major problem in this country. According to a report in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, by 2030, 42 percent of Americans will be obese. The definition of obese is 30 pounds or more over a healthy weight. To be severely obese, you have to be 100 or more pounds overweight, and by 2030, 11 percent of us will qualify for that.
In 2010, 36 percent of those living in the United States were obese, and 6 percent severely obese. The report estimates that the added medical costs related to obesity in the years leading up to 2030 would be $550 billion.
So, yes, it's a serious issue. But Bloomberg's solution is anything but serious. If he's going to regulate soda, why not french fries ... or slices of pizza ... or foot-long hotdogs?
In a silly contrast, on Friday, New York City Hall celebrated "National Doughnut Day."
On the same day, appearing on NBC's "Today" show, Bloomberg was told by host Matt Lauer that the soda idea "sounds ridiculous."
Bloomberg said: "It doesn't sound ridiculous."
Well, yes it does. If 32-ounce cups of Pepsi are outlawed, what's to stop someone from buying two 16-ounce cups?
More importantly, while we acknowledge that government certainly has a role in our lives, there are some places it just doesn't belong, including the checkout line at McDonald's and 7-11.