FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
The town of Elgin, Illinois is offering its citizens money to lose weight, but they can't find any takers
After a statewide survey named Elgin the "fattest" city in Illinois, city officials decided to try to do something about it.
The local YMCA is offering $48,000 in grants to promote healthy living. They asked schools, business, churches and community groups to submit their plans – and the winning groups would get $1,000 each.
The hope was that residents would come up with solutions like buying gym equipment, starting healthy cooking classes, creating a walking club, etc. But no one has signed up for the money yet.
Elgin's mayor says the lack of interest in this program shows the city has a long way to go, he suggests people come up with "non-traditional exercise programs" – an alternative to team sports, like a program to get kids to ride bikes and skateboards.
Officials hope some of this grant money can also help pay to teach parents about healthy eating for themselves and their children. Almost half of the kids in Elgin's school district are obese or at risk for being obese.
The deadline for this program is September 1st, so if you're listening in Elgin, Illinois, you have a couple weeks to get off the couch and sign up.
SO HERE'S THE QUESTION: If offering money to help fat people lose weight doesn't work, what will?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Have you ever tried to get a heroine addict to stop by giving him money? Food is an addiction to the overweight, and it's a terribly insidious one because you must be exposed to your addiction daily in order to live… I have been through every weight loss system imaginable, overseen by doctors and therapists. Sometimes, I've lost a little, but the weight comes back, and it brings friends. It is a kind of hell you can't understand unless you live there.
Jim from Hot Springs Village, Arkansas says:
Jack, As a 65-year old marathoner with a spinal injury, I can tell you it is difficult not to sit down and pick up a fork. Tell these people in Elgin it is possible to keep a 34 inch waist by putting said fork down and getting off one’s buttocks. Running mountains is difficult, but it works. We don't expect everyone to do what we do, but walking is pretty easy – especially AWAY from the refrigerator.
And we wonder why health care is so expensive.
JD from Greenville, North Carolina says:
Instead of "Cash for Clunkers" we're offering "Checks for the Chubby"? In eastern North Carolina, a lot of people don't have access to a lot of fresh food unless they grow it themselves. If you want to make people skinny and fit, bring back decent jobs to rural areas so folks can afford to buy fruits and veggies.
Arlene from Illinois says:
Jack, I live right down the road from Elgin, Illinois and can't for the life of me figure this thing out, but I'm willing to talk it over with you over a burger, fries, and a big drink next time you’re in town.
Three words: Bacon flavored vegetables.