Taxing products that carry public health concerns (for example, tobacco and alcohol) proved to be an effective way to limit their risks. In an initiative to reduce health risks from sugary drinks, the city of Berkeley, Calif, imposed a tax on their sales. Berkeley officials believe that this 20% increase in the price of such products, will reduce their consumption to about 15 to 20%. Other cities and states are considering such actions, and over 30 states have increased taxes on these beverages already. The medical cost of chronic illnesses are high; therefore, experts predict that a tax on sugary drinks would help in providing more savings. Additionally, the revenues from taxes would add value to the public funds. On the other hand, there are doubts that these regulations would actually change consumers behavior and affect the outcomes of major costly medical problems such as obesity and diabetes and bring other health benefits. Where do you stand on this issue?
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