America's Response to Obesity

Essay by schondraspenguin05High School, 11th gradeA, December 2004

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In recent years, America has experienced a dramatic rise in the obesity level among people. These "fat" people are making demands that many people consider absurd. One such demand included General Motors building a car that would hold an obese person, but retain a stylish look and the luxuries cars can have. These luxuries may include: cup-holders, consoles, built-in DVD players, and air bags. According to Debora Senytka, a design engineer for General Motors, "up until five years ago, ... America's growing obesity was never considered, but now she calls it 'a very real situation'" (qtd. in Pressler). The dramatic rise in number of obese people and their constant demands on major corporations to accommodate them has forced the United States Government to intervene in this overpowering issue. The country has seen a dramatic increase in the rate of obese people in America, and because of these increases, many corporations are being forced to change their ways.

However, not only are these people getting fatter, they are also making demands on corporations well as suing them. In response to a high-profile class-action lawsuit against McDonald's last year, the United States House of Representatives has passed a new bill that prevents citizens from holding big corporations like McDonald's responsible for making them or their family fat.

Over the last decade, America has seen an extremely dramatic increase in the obesity rate. According to Otesa Middleton, a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that in 1980 the obesity rate was only fifteen percent, but by the late 1990's, the obesity rate was at an alarming thirty-one percent. This means that almost one-third, or about sixty-two million people of America's adult population are obese. Further research done with this study found that more women are obese than men,