Local residents react to NYC proposed large soda ban

Mayor Bloomberg endorses plan

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is proposing a ban on large soft drinks, and some people in the Madison area weighed in on the idea Tuesday.

The mayor and city board of health have endorsed the plan to prevent sales of sugary drinks over 16 ounces in size at restaurants, food carts and entertainment venues.

New York City held its public hearings on the matter Tuesday afternoon, and people on their lunch breaks in the Madison area gave their reactions to the proposed ban.

Tyler Kemper said he doesn’t like the idea is government watching over his food and drink choices.

“I’d rather eat alone than eat with any politician for lunch,” Kemper said.

Bloomberg’s proposed ban fell flat with several lunch rush customers in Madison on Tuesday.

“I just thought it was kind of silly,” said Madison resident Chad Wiedenhoeft. “There are bigger things to worry about than how much soda somebody’s drinking in a day.”

Even for parents, such as Angie Watry, the choice to sweeten a meal is done in moderation, with hopes her children will someday make those moderate choices on their own.

“We don’t have (soda) at home, so they don’t have free access to it all the time,” said Watry. “And I hope when they grow up, they can make smart decisions when I’m not there to regulate it.”


The overwhelming consensus from people WISC-TV spoke with Tuesday was that the choice should be up to each person to make for themselves.

“If I wanted to drink all the terrible sugary soda I wanted to, it doesn’t affect you in the least,” Kemper said. “Other than the fact that you have to watch my fat self walking around all the time.”

Supporters of Bloomberg’s proposal point out that obesity issues are costing about $4 billion a year for taxpayers.

A final vote on the proposal in New York City is set for September.