Two high-profile Republicans, Mike Huckabee (likely presidential candidate for 2012), and Chris Christie (New Jersey Governor) have backed Michelle Obama's anti-obesity campaign - breaking ranks with most of their party.
Both Huckabee and Christie have had their own weight struggles - Huckabee once weighed 300lbs; Christie has described himself as portly.
Much of the criticism of Michelle Obama's campaign has been from Republicans who believe it is not the government's role to interfere in individuals' private lives. The radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh complained that:
She's demanding that everybody basically eat cardboard and tofu, no calories, no fat, no nothing, gotta stop obesity.
Christie has made it clear that he's not keen on the government dictating what people can and can't eat - but that he doesn't believe that's what Michelle Obama is doing:
I don't want the government deciding what you can and what you can't eat... I think Mrs. Obama being out there encouraging people in a positive way to eat well and to exercise and to be healthy, I don't have a problem with that.
The growing obesity crisis is increasingly being seen as a national problem, rather than a matter for individuals. Huckabee has pointed out that 75% of American youths aren't fit for military service, due to being overweight or obese, saying:
This is no longer just a health issue, an economic issue. It is becoming an issue of national security.
What do you think? Is obesity the fault of individuals, and their sole responsibility? Should governments of nations with high obesity rates (like the USA and the UK) do more to encourage healthy living?
Reproduced from Diet-Blog