If somebody hasn’t beaten us to it, we’d like to nominate U.S. District Judge James Robertson for a medal.
On Wednesday, Judge Robertson tossed out a lawsuit brought by a doctor who sought damages from fast-food chain KFC because he argued the company failed to properly inform customers that it used trans fats to fry its chicken.
The lawsuit was just one of the latest — surely not the last — efforts by Nanny Staters and Health Nazis to further eviscerate the concept of individual responsibility in favor of government maternalism.
But Judge Robertson wasn’t buying the nonsense peddled by the busybody crowd. He dismissed the lawsuit, arguing that Dr. Arthur Hoyle could not show he had been harmed by KFC’s use of trans fats.
“While it might be appropriate for this court to find, as a matter of law, that the consumption of fat — including trans fat — is indeed within the reasonable expectations of the consumers of fried chicken and french fries prepared in fast food kitchens, it is not necessary for me to reach that question,” Judge Robertson wrote.
And in response to Dr. Hoyle’s claim that customers have a growing understanding of the health risks associated with trans fats, the judge cut to the quick: “If consumers are increasingly aware of trans fat, where do they expect to find it if not in fast food restaurants?”
This is the kind of straight talk necessary from judges when it comes to this type of frivolous litigation.
Ironically, KFC this week announced that all of its 5,500 restaurants would stop using trans fats. Dr. Hoyle will no doubt cheer the move. Fine. But in a free society, such decisions must be made by KFC executives, not activist judges or publicity hungry politicians.