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In Maryland, a Moratorium on Fast Food

Stephen Stromberg reports in the Washington Post's PostPartisan column, that Maryland State Senator David C. Harrington is proposing to limit the number of new fast food restaurants in Prince George’s County. The county, in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., is an area where almost 40 percent of children are overweight.

Harrington has introduced a bill in the General Assembly to arrest the issuance of new fast-food business licenses in hopes of encouraging the proliferation of healthier food options, reports the Post. Those options might include eateries such as Panera Bread and Chipotle, which, though not exactly salad bars, are better than your average French-fry-and-burger joint.

"You don't see any deep fryers in Panera," community activist Arthur Turner told the Post.

Opponents of the move might argue that this type of meddling defines a "nanny-state," but arguments about public health beg the question of where to draw the line when regulating eating patterns.

"We're saying where there is health data that suggests that there should be interventions that we should put a stop to permits," Harrington said.

Do you think this is a legitimate way of improving people's health?

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