Baylen Linnekin on Austin's Proposed Fast Food Restrictions



The Austin, Texas, city council will meet next Thursday to consider a resolution that could eventually ban "fast-food food restaurants from locating near areas that children frequent." Specifically, the ban, or "Healthy Food Zone ordinance," would restrict fast food restaurants from locating anywhere near "schools, municipal parks, child care centers, libraries and recreation centers" in the city. At best, writes Baylen Linnekin, it's a protectionist measure shielding existing businesses from competition. But it also undermines parental control without offering any health benefits.