Big Gulp Racism

Sometimes, when the usual crowd cries “Racism!” they’re right: whatever it is they’ve identified is actual, real, racism.

And sometimes when the usual crowd cries “Racism!” they’re not right, exactly, but you see what they’re driving at.

Sometimes, of course, it’s just a tactic to get the other guy — usually the  other Republican guy — to shut up.

And sometimes — and these are my favorite types of this kind of thing — you just scratch your head in wonderment.  

Here’s one of those, from Crain’s:

Opponents of [New York City's] limit on the size of sugary drinks are raising questions of racial fairness alongside other complaints as the novel restriction faces a court test.

The NAACP’s New York state branch and the Hispanic Federation have joined beverage makers and sellers in trying to stop the rule from taking effect March 12. With a hearing set Wednesday, critics are attacking what they call an inconsistent and undemocratic regulation, while city officials and health experts defend it as a pioneering and proper move to fight obesity.

The issue is complex for the minority advocates, especially given obesity rates that are higher than average among blacks and Hispanics, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control. The groups say in court papers they’re concerned about the discrepancy, but the soda rule will unduly harm minority businesses and “freedom of choice in low-income communities.”

So it’s racist when it harms minority businesses, but perfectly fine when it harms any other business?

When you look at it closely, though, they do have a point:

Alcohol, unsweetened juice and milk-based drinks are excluded, as are supermarkets and many convenience stores—including 7-Eleven, home of the Big Gulp—that aren’t subject to city health regulations.

The NAACP and the Hispanic Federation, a network of 100 northeastern groups, say minority-owned delis and corner stores will end up at a disadvantage compared to grocery chains.

“This sweeping regulation will no doubt burden and disproportionally impact minority-owned businesses at a time when these businesses can least afford it,” they said in court papers.

As usual with government and nanny-state regulations, it’s the little guy who gets nailed.   I wouldn’t call that “racism,” though.  I’d just call it “liberalism.”

  1. Innocent Smith

    Last sentence is an amazingly accurate* summary.

    *edited for snobbishness

  2. Spin

    Ryan, you are from the Crack (Yakima).  Don’t say spot on. ;-)

    Rob, I don’t call it liberalism, I call it dumb.  Oh wait…

  3. Foxman
    Rob Long:The groups say in court papers they’re concerned about the discrepancy, but the soda rule will unduly harm …”freedom of choice in low-income communities.”

    · 12 minutes ago

    It it ok to harm freedom of choice in high-income communities?

  4. Rawls

    Reminds me of all the Obamacare exemptions.

    From IFAwebnews (potentially a bit out of date, FYI):

    Not that exemptions to ObamaCare (also known as the “ACA,” Affordable Care Act) haven’t already been made. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, no fewer than 1,200 waivers and exemptions to the sweeping new law have been granted by the Obama Administration. Among those who have been granted exemptions or fully waived from implementing the law among workers or members are:

    • McDonald’s

    • United Federation of Teachers
    • AARP
    • Jack in the Box
    • Teamsters locals nationwide
    • Pavers and Road Builders District Council
    • Indiana Area UFCW Union Locals and Retail Food Employers
    • Waffle House
    • Nevada
    • New Hampshire
    • Maine
    • Aetna

    Worth mentioning is that 40% of all those granted waivers and/or extensions … are unions, and fully 20% of those granted waivers are in the California district represented by …  Pelosi. Muslims, Christian Scientists and the Amish will also be exempt.

    The Obama Administration has been adamant that it will not grant a waiver or exemption to the Catholic Church… Instead, it granted an extension for church-owned organizations to comply with the law, until August 2013.

  5. Nobody

    O, I am amused.

  6. Bereket Kelile

    You stole my thunder Rob. I heard about this the other day and was gonna put a post saying that this is a great opportunity for the GOP. They should pounce on this issue and use it to show that liberal policies hurt the people they claim to represent and help. This would put the GOP on the same side as the NAACP, which would irritate the left but also draw curious attention to such strange bedfellows, I think. You yourself have talked about the need to reach out to urban voters and this does that, as well as reach out to blacks and small business. It’s also about standing up for the little guy. In addition, how many of these businesses are run by immigrants-another plus. 

  7. Jimmy Carter

    Racism That’s Hard To Swallow

  8. Innocent Smith
    Spin: Ryan, you are from the Crack (Yakima).  Don’t say spot on. ;-)

    Rob, I don’t call it liberalism, I call it dumb.  Oh wait… · 1 hour ago

    I was going to say “really hits the nail on the head,” but it seemed to cumbersome.  But good point.  I’ve gone from saying “I am well” in response to “how are you doing?” to “pretty good, you?” when checkers make small talk in the grocery store.  But I have no idea where I pick up grammar; I call it an honest mistake b/c I don’t watch TV and I love reading Chesterton.  A co-worker recently told me “nobody says ‘evil-eye’ anymore; it’s mad dogging.”  I had honestly never heard that phrase.

  9. Goldgeller

    Good point Rob. Especially that last bit. It’s amazing that NAACP sees it when it comes to sodas, but not say “minimum wage laws” or “prevailing wage” laws (when it comes to federal contracting). Something about that is troubling in it’s own right.

    Part of me wants to say “serves you right for not speaking against Mr, Bloomberg earlier” but there are a lot of people who would get hurt by this law. 

  10. flownover

    16.9 ounce soda pop. This is a half liter, the most popular size available in the water business for instance, maybe 80% of all water products in this size. Somebody missed that small detail. They are making millions of dollars of equipment instantly obsolete.

    Now what if they zeroed in on  a forty ounce beer bottle, let’s say a wide mouth Mickey ?

    How racist would that be ?

    How many calories in a split of Bollinger ?

  11. Sweezle

    I thought the story was ridiculous when it first broke. The new ‘war’ on large sodas is stupid but I don’t think it’s racist. However it does impact on minority and non-minority small stores disproportionately and it also leaves out all the rest of the unhealthy beverages, foods, behavior and products available to consumers in NYC. 

    Liberalism has a bad habit of creating laws that do not work to solve any “problem” they land on. And they have a big problem with throwing around labels like racism. Liberalism always creates an opportunity for Conservatives. I guess the trick is finding the where and the how.

  12. Spin

    Well, it’s a bloody sticky wicket, make no mistake.  

    Ryan M

    Spin: Ryan, you are from the Crack (Yakima).  Don’t say spot on. ;-)

    Rob, I don’t call it liberalism, I call it dumb.  Oh wait… · 1 hour ago

    I was going to say “really hits the nail on the head,” but it seemed to cumbersome.  But good point.  I’ve gone from saying “I am well” in response to “how are you doing?” to “pretty good, you?” when checkers make small talk in the grocery store.  But I have no idea where I pick up grammar; I call it an honest mistake b/c I don’t watch TV and I love reading Chesterton.  A co-worker recently told me “nobody says ‘evil-eye’ anymore; it’s mad dogging.”  I had honestly never heard that phrase. · 5 hours ago

    Edited 5 hours ago

  13. EThompson

    “This sweeping regulation will no doubt burden and disproportionally impact minority-owned businesses at a time when these businesses can least afford it,” they said in court papers.

    Always enjoy reading how previously unsympathetic soci0-ethnic interest groups are forced to reach the conclusion that a constriction of the free market is detrimental to all.

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