Bigger than the impact of Atkins and South Beach, the impact of obesity legislation is huge (no pun intended) and likely to affect our industry in one form or another. Or, more importantly, it will affect the public's perception of our industry. Where do we stand? The obesity epidemic is a harrowing thought; minions strapped to their own overindulgence and wearing it like a scarlet letter. Or do they? Each of us has physical attributes we would like to change, so when did weight become someone else's responsibility other than their own? Television's "Extreme Makeover" whisks willing participants to seclusion from their family to go under the knife for an amalgam of reasons; lips, hips, eyes, ears, teeth, tush. Botox here, liposuction there, lift this, pull that. These folks are not hapy for one reason or another, with what they have so they elect to chnage it. But, when did weighty issues become public policy? If my nose is crooked or my hairline receds further than I like, well, I have little control over it. I do, however, own each and every morsel that passes across my taste buds making one last leap towards immortality on my waist, if I am not careful. The pointing finger, smoking gun, evil eye if you will, has historically opted to aim away from the accuser for lack of self-examination. McDonald's eliminating their Super-Size fries should not (and incidentally wasn't) and act of social conscienceness. Rather, by their own admonition, they pulled the product line because it was only marginally profitable. Who is responsible for my bulging wasteline? Why should McDonald's start to limit customers' consumption? When are we responsible? Poor McDonald's, really. Everybody remembers Stella Liebeck who pocketed some $600,000 after successfully suing the Golden Arches for injuries sustained after dowsing herself with their too-hot coffee. And there is the Illinois lawsuit brought on by a pitcher that was beamed by a baseball after the batter he was attempting to strike out made contact. Rather than chalk off the knot on his head to poor pitching, he sued the bat manufacturer to requie a label be placed on each bat to state, in short, that pitchers might get hit by balls being struck at a high rate of speed. Um, isn't that the point? Maybe he should sue his pitching coach, the grounds crew for not making the mound higher, his parents for encouraging his hobby or perhaps the uniform manufacturer for providing adequate padding in his baseball cap. And now we can sue McDonald's for allowing us to feed our children Happy Meals 5 or six time per week. What is most perverse about not being held accountable for what we eat, is that it is really the last vestige of self-control. You are told where to smoke (or not at all) and even when to wear a seatbelt, for your own protection, of course. Do businesses have a responsibility not to grow their profits because our waistlines are growing, as well? Perhaps McDonald's best defense would be to ask patrons to strip naked upon entering their restaurants and place mirrors across the table from diners as the gluttony commences. Or perhaps they can follow up to Microsoft's "Where do you want to go today?" with their own motto of "Do you really need that, fatty?"