11 Pages Posted: 24 Aug 2005
Date Written: August 18, 2005
This light essay introduces the new interdisciplinary field of Law and Fast Food. It examines several well-known legal disputes involving fast food and fast food establishments. The inspiration and starting point for the essay is the recent decision in Hedgepeth v. WMATA (D.C. Cir. 2004), in which Supreme Court nominee John Roberts wrote the opinion rejecting a constitutional challenge by a 12-year-old girl who was arrested for eating a french fry in a train station. I suggest that this case captures the essence of Law and Fast Food: serious legal and social issues lost in the cultural and media parody that is fast food. Other cases that are part of the canon include the McDonald's obesity litigation, the McDonald's coffee case, and the McLibel lawsuit in England.
Keywords: Libel, First Amendment, Supreme Court, Tort Reform
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