Illinois Might Tax Parents for Having Obese Kids
May 11, 2011
To crack down on childhood obesity, Illinois lawmaker Shane Cultra (R-Onarga) suggested denying parents who have obese kids their tax deduction. I'm going to say that again, in case you thought you misread: the Senator wants to tax the parents of obese kids. "It's the parents' responsibility that have obese kids. Take the tax deduction away for parents that have obese kids," Cultra said.
With one in five Illinois children classified as obese, and 62% of the state's adults considered overweight, it's not surprising that people are frantic to come up with a game-changing solution. But I can’t imagine Cultra's solution would be an effective one.
Everyone knows obesity and poverty often go hand in hand, because in some places it's near-impossible to find healthy produce, much less afford it. And many hard-working moms and dads sometimes simply do not have time to prepare a fresh meal.
I'm not surprised so many people say, "Screw it, let's go to McDonalds." Denying them a tax deduction certainly isn’t going to much to help this vicious cycle.
Do you think this idea is nuts, too? Are you able to find affordable healthy food where you live, and do you have time to prepare it?