LJWorld.com weblogs Anna Sobering

If the government can ban smoking, can they ban cheese fries too?


Obviously, people who smoke in public establishments also impose their smoke on others around them. Because of this, the risk of heart attack increases for those inhaling their second hand smoke.

But what about cheese fries? Don’t these deliciously fatty, salty, cholesterol increasing, heart clogging little wedges increase your risk for heart attack too?

I can argue that the urge to eat cheese fries is just as involuntary as inhaling a big waft of somebody else’s cigarette smoke.

I’m dining at restaurant X and the table next to me orders a plate of cheese fries. The aroma drifts over and I turn to see the steaming plate on their table. Aren’t I just as susceptible to this heart unfriendly influence as I am to second hand smoke? I have to order cheese fries. Fully loaded. It’s non-negotiable.

For years the public has been informed that both smoking and the inhalation of second hand smoke are public health issues. It has also come to our attention that eliminating second hand smoke through smoking bans could reduce the amount of heart attacks each year.

Does the government have the authority to ban something because of health risks and ignore other things that have the same effects?

The American Heart Association says tobacco smoke, obesity and alcohol all increase the risk of having heart disease.

As the popular smoking ban continues to expand, should we also prepare to say goodbye to vodka and cheese fries? I hope not.


purplesage 8 years, 6 months ago

Probably not, since the government doesn't subsidize the cooking of cheese fries the way it does the growing of tobacco.

jonas_opines 8 years, 6 months ago

"As the popular smoking ban continues to expand, should we also prepare to say goodbye to vodka and cheese fries?"

Smoking, vodka and cheese fries? At the same time? Lord, who are you, Hedonismbot?

CrazyDiamond 8 years, 6 months ago

You can choose whether or not to order the cheese fries and vodka.. Your lack any self control doesn't affect me, but your smoke does.

somedude20 8 years, 6 months ago

Fat people ARE killing us ladies and gentlemen!!! "an overweight person is responsible for an extra ton of carbon dioxide emissions, as compared to his thinner neighbor." See, those cheese fries that you stuff down your throat make you fat which means your stink butt makes more gas, which means you are second-hand fartting the earth away. Back away from the fries now fatman!!!! (source) http://www.thedailygreen.com/environmental-news/latest/global-warming-fat-47042001

Ronda Miller 8 years, 6 months ago

I think we are headed that direction. Interesting blog topic. As we know, the government can and will do whatever we allow it to. Some may say someone else's lack of self control doesn't affect them, but think again. It does every day in every way. When other people over eat, over indulge, we pay the price in health care costs, and in prisons, etc., etc., Think people killed by drunk drivers.

Every stone thrown has a ripple - some of them big enough to cause a tsunami.

We already have pregnant women who get time for what they put into their bodies while pregnant....everything we do is connected with another on some level.

Tom McCune 8 years, 6 months ago

You eating cheese fries doesn't pollute my air with carcinogens.

jonas_opines 8 years, 6 months ago

The dangers of second-hand farting!! Now That should be a cause we can all get behind!

Satirical 8 years, 6 months ago

Comparing cheese fries to cigarette smoke is a poor argument; but better argument is whether cheese fries will be banned after ObamaCare.

I think there is a good chance this could this could occur in the next 20 years if ObamaCare passes. The reason: no one wants to pay for someone else's bad habits and lack of self control. If your lifestyle affects only you, then I generally there isn't anything I can Constitutionally do about it. But, if your obesity affects health care costs (which it does and will), which I pay for, then I have rights as well. Therefore the argument goes: if you choose to eat unhealthy food, you must also pay for the extra health care costs associated.

gogoplata 8 years, 6 months ago

Great post. Government has by far overstepped its bounds for what is supposed to be a free republic.

Hop2It 8 years, 6 months ago

Uhhh...no. Dumb. This arguement has been used with taxes on things that are bad for you, but it is silly when you try to apply it it to second-hand smoke.

Clickker 8 years, 6 months ago

If you are stuck on a desert Island with unlimited supplies of Cigaretts and Cheese fries, one will kill you, and one will keep you alive. Guess which.

Stuart Evans 8 years, 6 months ago

it's not silly, it's a legitimate question. how far can the government go to control what we do to our bodies. while the question is currently revolving around second hand smoke, soon the second hand part will be buried and the argument will be brought around to personal use. do not underestimate the governments ability to misinform the public in such a manner as to get what they want. and I think the national health care debate will ultimately push more and more regulations on what we drink, smoke & eat.

jimmyjms 8 years, 6 months ago

Um...Mr. Unruh -

You may notice that the "government controls" to which you allude aren't actually gov't controls at all, rather they're hypotheticals on a blog.

beatrice 8 years, 6 months ago

No matter how many cheesy fries you eat, my ass won't get bigger. Your smoking, on the other hand, will eventually kill me, even if I have the ability to resist them myself. Bad analogy.

Ronda, when you discuss the harms of drinking, you mention the dangers from drinking and driving. That is a very good analogy. Drinking is legal and you are free to drink away as much as you want at home, but drinking and driving is illegal -- or should I say it is "banned" -- because it endangers others. Once you bring the activity into a realm that affects others -- drinking and driving / smoking inside a business -- that is when it becomes illegal. Pretty simple really.

smot 8 years, 6 months ago

Banning cigarettes in public places is necessary for the right to a safe workplace and the public health risk from the second hand inhalation of environmental toxins proven to cause heart disease and cancer. Cheese fries have neither of these dangers through second hand exposure. You can kill yourself if you want to but you can't take anybody else with you.

Satirical 8 years, 6 months ago

Beatrice... "No matter how many cheesy fries you eat, my ass won't get bigger."

Yeah, you are doing a good enough job on your own ; )

(I am so so so sorry. You set yourself up for that one big time. For the record I have no idea what Beatrice looks like, and she likely knows I don't actually intend anything malicious by this comment)

BabyBear 8 years, 6 months ago

too much of anything can kill you. if you choose to kill yourself with cheese fries go ahead. one more idiot I dont have to worry about!

Satirical 8 years, 6 months ago

JamesUnruh... "I picture bea with a rather large behind, she seems to have the outlook of a large, angry, man-hating, woman"

LOL. I don't think she is large. I bet she is really hot. Or at least that is how l prefer to picture her. I don't mind when attractive females disagree with me. My wife disagrees with me most of the time too : )

somedude20 8 years, 6 months ago

I'm telling you that fat people fart more than smaller people and that 2nd hand gas is warming up the earth which can lead to us all dying. Maybe America should outlaw farting in public places (breathing in 2nd hand farts can cause lung and live cancer, ok maybe not but it damn well stinks). Take it outside with the smokers as we care not to smell your digestive process

Check it out this is real and WE all are going to die....RUN!! http://www.thedailygreen.com/environmental-news/latest/global-warming-fat-47042001

feeble 8 years, 6 months ago

Seeing as how Chicago, of all places overturned their foie gras ban last year, I don't think the blog poster has much to worry about.

beawolf 8 years, 6 months ago

JamesUnruh (Anonymous) says…

"I picture bea with a rather large behind, she seems to have the outlook of a large, angry, man-hating, woman. Let’s face it, in America it is a safe assumption. But I agree with her assertion here."

That's funny, because I picture you as short, passive, fat man with a little penis.

compmd 8 years, 6 months ago

The Man will only take my cheese fries from my cold, dead, cheesy fingers.

1029 8 years, 6 months ago

Maybe they should ban the fries that DON'T have cheese on them. That would make a lot more sense.

Matt Torres 8 years, 6 months ago

Awww this is cute. All the straw-man slippery slope arguments against the big bad government doing things it isn't even trying to do. Don't worry you slobs, as long as it doesn't disturb anyone else or cause anyone else harm, no one's going to try to outlaw your precious fried lard potato cheese ham ranch gutbuster bombs with ice cream dipping sauce.

Martini_Boy 8 years, 6 months ago

Once Gov't socializes healthcare they can control about everything we do from eating, sky diving, watching tv, or even living (too long that is)......

bondavibe 8 years, 6 months ago

Smoking bans in Kansas started in Salina if I recall, not suprisingly, and eventually reached Lawrence. In my opinion, it should be up to each individual bar owner to make these decisions, not a local government. Proper ventilation can make a world of difference. If, say, a waitress wants to make $20/hr+ working in a smoke filled room for a few years to pay her way through college, that's her decision. Not everyone has paid scholarships and sorioritiy sisters. The smoke at the replay is certainly no worse than what the servers outside the freestate have to put up with every night. This is a party town.

Portland is a good example of a city where each neighborhood has its own character and charm. There's no smoking ban. Some areas have few if any places that allow smoking, while others neighborhoods cater to smoking crowds.

beatrice 8 years, 6 months ago

Sati, perhaps I'm allergic to cheesy fries. Whenever I eat them my ass swells.

Actually, I wouldn't eat cheesy fries if you paid me. If I'm having empty calories, I'm going to make them worthwhile, perhaps a Guiness. I tend to eat well, and I've always been a runner. 3 - 5 miles at least five times a week, and I swim regularly in the pool in the back yard. I'm fit.

invictus, I don't picture you at all. If I try to, all I can imagine is a black hole filled with ignorance and hatred, with no chance for any light getting through. When you next get removed, hopefully inside that black hole is where you will remain.

beatrice 8 years, 6 months ago

Venemous? You are someone who has been removed countless times from this board for writing repugnant and racist statements. I'm just calling them as I see them.

svenway_park 8 years, 6 months ago

Funny how people who are bankrupt tobacco profiteers always see demonic forces when human lives are being saved.

Stuart Evans 8 years, 6 months ago

Monheim "Don't worry you slobs, as long as it doesn't disturb anyone else or cause anyone else harm, no one's going to try to outlaw your...."

Why did the government outlaw marijuana then?

Satirical 8 years, 6 months ago


I am guilty of eating a cheesy fry or two. Although I would prefer the onion rings at Buffalo Wild Wings with their dipping sauce. I swear it is addictive. I don’t even like onions.

You run way more than I do. You definitely sound like you are fit. About six months ago I started running 1-2 miles three times a week, and started working out again. I lost 10 pounds. Although at 6’0” and 180 lbs., I didn’t have all that much to lose. But even so, since I started running I generally feel a lot better, so I don’t think I will quit anytime soon.

Satirical 8 years, 6 months ago


So can I quote you as saying, “Give me cheese fries, or give me death?”

somedude20 8 years, 6 months ago

My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what your cheese fries can do for you,ask what you can do for your cheese fries

iridebikesalot 8 years, 6 months ago

YES ! I love this post !

Just the fact that someone posted this and people get upset about it even though it's ridiculous makes me think that maybe it's not cigarettes or cheese fries killing people.


Plainspoken 8 years, 6 months ago

Seriously, everybody should stay on top of far too many legislative ideas just like this one. At least at the Kansas level, a great site to use is http://www.kansasvotes.org. It tracks every bill introduced, every recorded vote of every legislator, and is very easy to use in finding exactly what you want.

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