The Health Care Debate ... in the Produce Section | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

The Health Care Debate ... in the Produce Section



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    Whole Foods CEO John Mackey has come under fire for writing an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal that opposes the health care bill in Congress.

    The health care debate is moving to the grocery store, aisle 9, next to the pitted olives.

    At the intersection of Preston Road and Forest Lane, more than 400 people showed up to show their opposition to the current health care bill by shopping at Whole Foods Market.

    Health Care Debate Hits Grocery Aisles

    [DFW] Health Care Debate Hits Grocery Aisles
    Hundreds of shoppers pack a Dallas Whole Foods Market to support the company CEO's opposition to the health care legislation before Congress.
    (Published Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2009)

    So what do Whole Foods and health care have to do with each other?

    Last month, Whole Foods CEO John Mackey wrote an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal, basically saying he's against the health care bill before Congress. He also stated examples of ways he thinks health care should be fixed, using examples in place at his company.

    Supporters of the current bill lashed out, organizing boycotts and starting Facebook pages telling people to stay away from Whole Foods.

    But those against the current bill decided to start a "buycott."

    "I'll stop shopping at other places and start shopping here exclusively," said Mike Higgins, of Irving.

    Other people showed off their receipts -- some totaling more than $100 -- after shopping. A few shoppers admitted they'd never shopped at Whole Foods before.

    Melinda Branchini said she would not have come out if the other side hadn't organized a boycott of the store. But because they did, she was compelled to come out to support Whole Foods' CEO, she said.

    "I'm out here, definitely, in defense of his right to speak out and debate an issue," she said. "People who don't believe or agree with what he as to say are going out and forming a boycott. What happened to freedom of speech? What happened to debate of good ideas?"

    A Whole Foods employee said cameras were not allowed inside the store and employees would not be making any political statements.