Water or Milk?: Those Are About to Be the Only Two Options Offered to Kids in California

Correction [8/21/18 1:01 p.m. ET]: Previously, this story inaccurately claimed that the bill banned restaurants from serving sugary beverages to children. We have corrected the error.

In an attempt to reduce childhood obesity rates, the state of California is taking the reins from parents and banning restaurants from offering sugary drinks to children as a default beverage.

The new bill restricts children’s default drink options at restaurants to just water or milk. However, restaurants would still be permitted to sell “alternative beverage” options, such as chocolate milk or soda, to children “if the purchaser requests one.” The bill passed through the state legislature and is expected to be signed by Gov. Jerry Brown.

The American Cancer Society led the charge on this bill, telling CBS 13 that “cancer is fought in the halls of government, not just in the halls of a hospital.”


“Some of these kids are drinking up to three sodas a day. This is setting them up for tremendous cancer risks down the road,” said a representative for the American Cancer Society.

Although the Cancer Society is on board with the decision, not all parents agree.

“I think the government shouldn’t determine what’s available when I, as a mother, know what’s best for my child,” Inez Deocio, an opponent of the bill, said. 

“As a parent, you should be able to decide for yourself whether your kid’s going to have milk or water or soda. The state shouldn’t be telling you that,” Scott Gregory, another parent, said.

Many on Twitter disagreed with the proposed law, urging that parents should be making the decisions:

“It amazes me always, the progressive instinct to ban things they don’t like. Whether in California it’s banning plastic bags or straws, or even speech,” Mike Slater, a radio host in San Diego told Fox News.

If a restaurant fails to comply with the new bill, it could face a fine of up to $500. 

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