A few comments regarding the “Tax bad foods” letter from Jim Beecham, MD., on Dec. 19:
One of the three foods that he proposes to be taxed is “wheat flour (loaded with gluten).” In this he is complicit in feeding the mass public hysteria regarding the consumption of gluten. Gluten is indeed a no-no for sufferers of celiac disease, which is a rather uncommon malady, affecting only an estimated 1 percent of the population. Should the rest of us be taxed as collateral damage?
Excessive salt added to processed and fast foods, which can exacerbate high blood pressure in many, is inexplicably left out by Dr. Beecham.
Moderate drinking, which is currently taxed, has been shown to have long term health benefits. Think a glass or two of red wine daily.
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Tax revenues collected by the government have a tendency to become a kitty for pet projects rather than being used to address a specific need, such as healthcare. More taxes are not the answer. In keeping with Dr. Beecham’s condemnation of sugar, perhaps the government should instead rescind its untenable subsidy and its price support for sugar growers.
Angel C. Garces,