PETA to Mississippi: "Let Fat People Eat!"
February 5, 2008
Jackson, Miss. - A provocative bill introduced by state representative W.T. Mayhall Jr. that would bar Mississippi restaurants from serving obese people has captured PETA's attention, but the group is suggesting an amendment. The animal rights group thinks it can do HB282 one better: instead of refusing to serve overweight people altogether--something that would raise the ire of restaurants and patrons alike if the bill were actually passed and implemented--PETA is proposing that restaurants be required to serve only healthy vegan meals to consumers who are struggling with their weight.
Citing research studies that show that vegans and vegetarians are much thinner on average than their meat-eating counterparts, PETA points out that most vegan foods are naturally high in fiber (there is none in meat and dairy products), and low in fat and contain zero cholesterol (which is only found in animal products).
"There's no reason to starve fat people--they just need to pile their plates with healthy, vegan food," says PETA Vice President Bruce Friedrich. "Vegan meals like hearty vegetable casseroles, bean burritos, and pasta with mushrooms, tomatoes, and green peppers not only are satisfying but will slim you right down too."
PETA's letter to Rep. Mayhall follows:
February 5, 2008
The Honorable W.T. Mayhall Jr.
Mississippi House of Representatives
Dear Representative Mayhall:
On behalf of PETA's more than 1.8 million members and supporters, I am writing to commend you for your creative effort to combat the obesity epidemic in Mississippi. I'd also like to suggest a change to HB282 that we think would make it truly effective.
Changing the bill slightly would not just make a point--it could actually address (and even solve) Mississippi's obesity epidemic rather than simply generating a discussion about it.
Instead of refusing to serve obese people, restaurants could be required to serve them only vegan dishes. Vegan food is not only delicious and satisfying, but overwhelming scientific evidence shows that vegans and vegetarians are far less likely to be overweight than meat-eaters. Vegans are also far more likely to be in better overall health because, among other things, vegan foods contain no cholesterol and lots of fiber, the complete opposite of meat- and dairy-based meals. The American Dietetic Association--the nation's largest group of nutrition professionals--reviewed hundreds of studies and concluded that vegetarians have lower rates of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer than people who eat meat.
A U.S. government review of studies on weight loss found that two-thirds of dieters gain back all the weight they've lost within a year, and a whopping 97 percent gain it all back within five years. The only weight-loss plan that has been proved to take weight off--and keep it off--for more than a year is a vegan diet. Most vegan foods are naturally low in fat, so quantity and calorie restrictions are often unnecessary. Obese people can still eat the portions that they're used to while watching pounds slip away and good health return!
Please contact me at 757-622-7382 if you have any questions. Thank you for your consideration. Please accept PETA's best wishes for good health (and trim waistlines) for all Mississippi residents.