I hate days like that.
I hate days like that.
She's probably pretty grateful to be alive at this point.
Beverage industry, NYC lawyers duel over drinks
NEW YORK (AP) -- The city defended its groundbreaking size limit on sugary drinks Wednesday as an imperfect but meaningful rein on obesity, while critics said it would hurt small and minority-owned businesses while doing little to help health.
The first courtroom arguments in the closely watched case ended without an immediate ruling. Opponents said they planned to ask a judge to delay enforcement during the suit, which has broached questions of racial fairness alongside arguments about government authority and burdens to business.
The NAACP's New York state branch and a network of Hispanic groups have joined a legal effort to block the first-of-its-kind restriction, igniting questions Wednesday about the groups' ties to the beverage industry...
...The latest in a line of healthy-eating initiatives during Mayor Michael Bloomberg's administration, the beverage rule bars restaurants and many other eateries from selling high-sugar drinks in cups or containers bigger than 16 ounces. Violations could bring $200 fines; the city doesn't plan to start seeking those until June....
....Unsweetened juice and milk-based drinks are excluded; health officials say they have nutritional value. The regulation also doesn't cover alcoholic drinks or sales at supermarkets and many convenience stores - among them 7-Eleven, home of the Big Gulp - because they aren't subject to city health rules.
The NAACP and the Hispanic Federation, an organization of 100 Northeastern groups, say their concern is that minority-owned delis and corner stores will end up at a disadvantage compared with grocery chains.
It's a complaint voiced behind deli counters in heavily Hispanic East Harlem, where managers such as Yolanda Peralta see the restriction as inequitable.
"We're paying taxes like every other store. ... We should have the same rights that everybody else," Peralta said Wednesday.
But others questioned the advocacy groups' links to the soda companies whose fight they've joined. Among the ties:
- Coca-Cola announced last month it was giving a $100,000 grant to the national NAACP to support a healthy-lifestyles program
- PepsiCo gave the group more than $10,000 in 2010, according to the soda maker's website.
- Former Hispanic Federation President Lillian Rodriguez Lopez left for a job at Coca-Cola in in February.
- The groups were represented Wednesday by a firm that also has represented Coca-Cola. The firm, King & Spalding, is representing the advocacy groups for free, lawyer Ann M. Cook said.
Given that obesity rates are higher than average among blacks and Hispanics, the NAACP should refuse soda makers' money and "reevaluate the position the group is taking in New York City," Michael F. Jacobson, the executive director of the nutrition advocacy group Center for Science in the Public Interest, said in a statement Wednesday....
...Hazel Dukes, the NAACP's New York president, bristled at the idea that the nearly 104-year-old group was swayed by the soda industry's support.
"No one buys the NAACP," she said in a telephone interview, noting that foundations also have contributed to the organization's obesity-fighting initiatives.....