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Old 07-26-2002, 08:28 AM   #1
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Another stupid lawsuit

http://abcnews.go.com/sections/us/Da...uit020725.html

July 25 Some failed dieters blame will power. A class-action lawsuit filed in New York City on Wednesday claims fast-food chains knowingly serve meals that cause obesity and associated illnesses.

Caesar Barber, 57, who reportedly weighs 250 pounds and stands 5-foot-10, claims four chains McDonald's, Burger King, Wendy's and KFC have jeopardized his health with their greasy, salty fare. He filed the lawsuit in the New York State Supreme Court in the Bronx on behalf of the potentially millions of obese and ill Americans who also feast on fast food.
Barber's lawsuit is the first broad-based action taken against the fast food industry.

"This lawsuit has the potential to put the fast food companies on the run," said John Banzhaf, a professor at George Washington University Law School, who has worked on tobacco litigation and will serve as an adviser to Barber.

The fast food companies, "negligently, recklessly, carelessly and/or intentionally engaged in the distribution, ownership, retail, manufacture, sale, marketing and/or production of food products that are high in fat, salt, sugar, and cholesterol content which numerous studies have shown cause obesity, diabetes, coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, strokes, elevated cholesterol intake, related cancers, and/or other detrimental and adverse health effects and/or diseases," reads the complaint filed by lead attorney Samuel Hirsch.

As a result of the fast food companies' actions, Barber suffered injuries he has had two heart attacks and is diabetic and is entitled to unspecified damages at a jury trial, the lawsuit reads.

A food industry spokesman says he is surprised Barber's lawyer can make his legal argument with a straight face.

"He must be aware that fully two-thirds of all foods consumed in America are consumed in people's homes. Is he proposing that we sue America's moms?" said John Doyle, co-founder of Center for Consumer Freedom, a restaurant industry group.

More troubling is the implication the lawsuit makes about the abilities of Americans to choose what they eat, Doyle said. "To win his suit he has to convince a jury or a judge that people are too stupid to feed themselves or their children. If people are so stupid, should they be allowed to vote or go to work in the morning?"

Can Juries Be Convinced?

There have been at least three previous, narrower lawsuits against the food industry.

McDonald's just settled a $12 million lawsuit and apologized for wrongly describing its French fries as vegetarian. A similar lawsuit was filed against Pizza Hut for allegedly using beef fat in its Veggie Lovers' Pizza.

Another class action law suit claims that the makers of the corn and rice puff snack food "Pirates' Booty" under-represented its fat content by more than 340 percent.

But Barber's lawsuit is the first known legal action to claim that the fast food industry has contributed knowingly to the problem of obesity in America. The U.S. surgeon general said in a report last December that obesity kills an estimated 300,000 Americans each year.

Lawyers, including Banzhaf, have been working on strategies to hold the food industry at least partly responsible for obesity-related costs, just as plaintiff's attorneys have successfully sued tobacco companies for smoking-related illnesses.

The surgeon general estimated that obesity cost us $117 billion just last year.

But even Banzhaf, who has led the charge against the food industry so far, realizes the high hurdle he and plaintiffs such as Barber face in convincing a jury, and the general public, that fat is the fault of corporate America.

"We know from the tobacco litigation that initial suits have real difficulties because the public has real problems accepting new ideas and new concepts," he said. "It took us many years to get us to the point of educating juries about tobacco, so now they are. [Barber's suit] has a great deal of potential."

For its part, McDonald's released a statement calling Barber's lawsuit frivolous.

"Common sense tells you that it makes no sense. McDonald's serves quality food. Our menu features choice and variety with lots of options for consumers," reads the statement.

Comprehensive nutritional information is available at the fast food restaurants and on the company's Web site, the statement read.
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Old 07-26-2002, 08:34 AM   #2
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Who would have guessed that a diet consisting of a Sausage & Egg biscuit with hash browns for breakfast; Big Mac and Supersize fries for lunch (with small diet Coke of course); and double Quarter Pounder with cheese, large fries and Hot fudge Sundae(with small Diet Coke of course) for dinner 7 days a week could make someone obese??
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Old 07-26-2002, 10:10 AM   #3
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*grrrrrr* Things like this make me sooooo mad.

Sometimes I am guilty of blaming the food industry on obesity, especially when you go out to eat somewhere and you order a dish of pasta and they give you A POUND of pasta as your serving. WTF!!!!

But, who is eating the pasta???? Are the owners of the resteraunt shoving it down your throat??

And EVERYONE knows that fast food is so very bad for you!!! This idiot filing this lawsuit is claiming he didn't know it was bad for him!!! Come on!!!

But, you know him and all the other junk addicts will win, just like all the smokers won their lawsuit!!!

It's so ridiculous!!!!!
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Old 07-26-2002, 10:28 AM   #4
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Please check out my thread on this in Free Your Mind:

http://forum.interference.com/showth...threadid=61185
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Old 07-26-2002, 11:35 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Hewson
Who would have guessed that a diet consisting of a Sausage & Egg biscuit with hash browns for breakfast; Big Mac and Supersize fries for lunch (with small diet Coke of course); and double Quarter Pounder with cheese, large fries and Hot fudge Sundae(with small Diet Coke of course) for dinner 7 days a week could make someone obese??
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Old 07-26-2002, 11:41 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Klodomir
Please check out my thread on this in Free Your Mind:

http://forum.interference.com/showth...threadid=61185


I'm sorry I didn't see it there before I posted it here.

Mods if you would be so kind as to merge it

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Old 07-26-2002, 12:41 PM   #7
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Ive bitched about this too many times to care to do it at length again. however. In summary of the main points Im making; If this lawsuit wins, people are no longer responsible for themselves. If you cant take the responsibility of make a concious desicion to eat something, while being aware of potential health risks, then whats the world coming to. Are you going to sue the farmer next time you choke on a tough peice of beef cuz youre too stupid to chew it more? Are you going to sue the car company next time you get in a wreck? No, of course youre not. Because you bought their goods in awareness of what you were doing, and you no longer have the right to try and hold them responsible for your actions.

Like really, what do they expect? Fast food service where you get your meal in 30 seconds that takes 3 hours to prepare? Thats just plain unreasonable. If youre a lazy sumbitch and you cant even take 15 or 20 minutes to prepare your own food, then you probably dont exercise either, and thats your own fault, and thats why youre unhealthy, you can eat nearly anything as long as you exercise in some ammount variable according to what and how much you eat... but come on... You could buy a personal deep fryer thing, and fry up hamburgers at home every day for yourself in the same ammount of time for the same price and itd do the same thing to your body, are you going to sue the grocery store because of that? Selling you 'unhealthy' beef? No you really arent... I dont know where people can be so stupid... have the unmitigated gall to blame everyone but themselves for their problems... like get a fucking clue...
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