Public Health Nannyism

I always considered public health to be about watching for all those unseen things the public isn’t aware of and has little control over. You know, like setting standards for restaurants to make sure when we eat out their kitchens are clean, food is kept and stored properly to avoid contamination, etc. Finding ways to avoid communicable disease like measles, the flu, etc. Make sure our water supplies are contamination free, our streets aren’t run over with rats.

I never once thought of public health as an agency that should feel the need to stick its collective nose into my private life and make my choices for myself.

How wrong was that thinking!!! Apparently public health has decided that their role is really to decide exactly what is the best way for each and every one of us to live, eat, exist. Public Health these days has taken a turn for the worst, in my not so humble opinion.

I’m all for taking care of myself, but not to the point of depriving myself of pleasure either. So if I gain a few pounds, no big deal, as long as I’m still healthy it’s nobody else’s business. Public Health however has other ideas. They’ve decided they know what the ideal level of health and fitness is, and by god they are going to get us to fit into those little boxes if it’s the last thing they do.

Ethics, personal responsibility, personal autonomy be damned. Those are freedoms you don’t need. What you need to do is submit to our will for the common good. That’s just waaayyy tooooo Orwellian for my tastes. Sorry.

I’ve already shown how “Public Health” wants to “help” us all here and in the UK. Now Junkfood Science shows how far Canada is willing to go to prove it’s definition of Public Health is really controlling your personal decisions.

Public health — a different concept of medical ethics

Monday, while we were commemorating Memorial Day, the Health Law Institute at the University of Alberta, Canada, hosted a seminar titled: “Ethical Obesity Policy: Paternalism, Preference Change & the Good Life.” It illustrates the growing movement to eliminate the distinction between private and public health and redefine medical ethics. Governmental preventive health interventions are increasingly said to be ethically imperative for the collective good of society.

Essentially, this philosophy argues that the obesity “epidemic” is such a threat to society and our quality of life, that to be moral and ethical, public health policies and preventive health must act in the name of the common good. Public interests are more important than those of individuals. The government must determine what is best for all, as individuals are incapable of protecting themselves. Society, most importantly, must act on behalf of children. Today’s public health has reached such crisis proportions, the viewpoint goes, that coercive policies that strip away individual freedoms and leave people no choice but to comply with “healthy behaviors” are now justified.

AND because they don’t like that our personal autonomy and freedom to choose isn’t designing us into their “ideal person”, they are willing to forgo all ethics and legislate you into submission if necessary.

I pulled this from the notes of this symposium that Sandy references in her article:

Key Points: – inducing stigma should be avoided: communication on obesity prevention should be neutral and avoid blame, a focus on weight control should be avoided. Instead a focus on healthy eating and physical activity should be promoted; – healthy food and physical activity options must be available in safe environments (community, schools, traffic, …); – healthy options should be available for all children, not only for children whose parents can afford them; – parents responsibility and parenting skills for learning health eating and physical activity habits are crucial, in this context sensitivity for competing interests in the family is important; – health and commercial interests should be balanced – voluntary and imposed regulation should be balanced.

The really annoying part is that the obesity epidemic doesn’t really exist. It was deliberately created with the lowering of the BMI standards.

All this worry over everyone else’s weight while people die in hospitals from antibiotic-immune staph infections. Hundreds of thousands of people die every year from medical errors and hospital infections in the United States alone, but public health agencies prefer to regulate your private life rather than actually tackle problems that really ARE hazards to the public.

And THIS is the world we are moving into folks. How much longer are you willing to tolerate this?

Sandy ended her article with a great quote that I will use here also as it is totally fitting to the idealogies being forced upon us these days. This is exactly what our governments and public health advocates are saying.

Your body belongs to the nation!

Your body belongs to the Führer!

You have the duty to be healthy!

Food is not a private matter!

(German National Socialist slogan, 1937 – 1944)

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~ by swfreedomlover on May 29, 2008.

One Response to “Public Health Nannyism”

  1. I wish the avoiding stigma had been part of Dawson’s presentation! His stuff is really unsettling, isn’t it? Scarier is that he sounds just like what’s coming out of the CDC and HHS, AMA, and so many professional organizations. Did you check out the articles in the premier issue of his new academic journal? Yikes!

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