Tuesday, January 02, 2007

The Jungle

“I aimed at the public’s heart,” he [Upton Sinclair] famously declared, “and by accident I hit it in the stomach.”

“The Jungle,” and the campaign that Sinclair waged after its publication, led directly to passage of a landmark federal food safety law, which took effect 100 years ago this week. Sinclair awakened a nation not just to the dangers in the food supply, but to the central role government has to play in keeping it safe. But as the poisonings of spinach eaters and Taco Bell customers recently made clear, the battle is far from over — and in recent years, we have been moving in the wrong direction. (NYT)

My political science capstone (the final class required for any major) this semester is about the government's involvement in the food industry. How much of a burden does the government have to regulate what we eat?

The topic is especially appropriate given the recent e. Coli outbreaks and the 100-year anniversary of the passage of the first federal food safety laws.

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