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Beverage companies blame video games for obesity

Ross Miller
December 19, 2007
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On Monday, San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom submitted a proposal that he hopes will curtail obesity by applying a financial deterrent to drinks with high fructose corn syrup - in other words, a surcharge on soda. (Amount of surcharge has yet to be defined.) Understandably aggravated by this measure is the American Beverage Association, who pulls out one of our favorite red herrings in its defense.

Said Kevin Keane, senior VP of the ABA, "It makes no sense to single out any one single cause of obesity, which is a complex problem." As quoted by the International Herald Tribune, "Keane said that if Newsom really wanted to fight the fat, he would take on computer and video game companies, which Keane said lured children inside when they should 'be outside burning calories.'"

Yes, folks, by this logic we shouldn't even bother to worry about soda causing obesity when video games - not Dance Dance Revolution or Rock Band drums, mind you, those other video games like BioShock and Spider Solitaire - are the bigger Cause of Fatness. In a wholly accurate scientific study, Joystiq editors reported feeling approximately 15 calories surge from our controller, through our hands, and into our bloodstreams for every double kill in Halo 3.

We jest, of course, but continuing with Keane's logic, we must say it makes no sense to single out video games when the real problem of obesity is existence itself. If Mayor Newsom really wanted to fight the fat, he should combat our very existence. If he obliterates that, then there'll be no more obesity.

Update: The ABA sends a response letter to Kotaku.

[Image Source. Via OXM; thanks, PrivateRyan]











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