Responding To The The Navy Yard Massacre, Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert Calls For Crackdown On Spoons

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 ” . . . blaming this on guns is like saying the 
big problem with obesity is we’ve got too many spoons. . .”

Rep. Louie Gohmert (TX),
reacting to the Navy Yard shootings that claimed 12 innocent lives
September 17, 2013

Spoons, many sizes and shapes and totally unregulated

The culprits en masse

Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert used the Navy Yard shooting tragedy to discuss another problem that receives scant attention, the proliferation of spoon-related obesity in the United States. Mr. Gohmert, often referred to as a “Congressloon,” for many of his positions may with this new campaign cause these hyperbolic canards to markedly abate. Mr. Gohmert bases his  spoon-related issues position on solid scientific evidence, something his critics routinely accuse him of ignoring or disparaging.

Long ignored, a direct relationship between spoons and obesity has recently garnered support. Surely, Mr. Gohmert demonstrated he knows of the newest and most influential research study. Unwittingly laying the foundation for Mr. Gohmert’s cris de couer, two University of Phoenix researchers claimed success in proving a perfect correlation between the number of spoons present in an eating establishment and an increased propensity towards obesity.

Funded by the U.S. Forest Service, and released last week, the study, Spoons, Fatal Obesity Delivery Systems, by Simon Brewster (UP, Honolulu, Hawaii) and Sylvia McAllister (UP, Miami, Florida), evaluated 730 subjects over an eight month period this year, taking physical measurements whenever any subject visited one of the restaurants chosen for monitoring, each one nationally recognized for by nutritionists for many reasons:

Spoon Study – Monitored Restaurants
Friendly’s IHOP
Big Boy Waffle House
Chicken Licken Dunkin Donut
Fatburger Pizza Hut


(Note: Included on the initial eateries list, Olive Garden proved a poor choice.
No one among the of 730 initial research subjects visited the eatery during the eight months of the study.)

During early January this year, the duo, both doctoral candidates for UP’s General Studies Specialty, carefully recruited each subject (via a painless anesthetic dart). Once downed the team tagged each one with an intra-ear canal electronic GPS system. For technical reasons, and to ensure participation, subjects were not informed of his or her status as a study participant (called a “blind study” in scientific terminology).

After  calculating each subject’s initial weight with the oversight of a panel of seven weight guess professionals certified by Outdoor Amusement Business Association, Brewster and McAllister went to work and hand-counted the initial number of spoons in the establishments they chose to monitor (see chart above). Once these two values were available, the “Spoons team,” advised by UP graduate-level arithmetic majors,

(1) divided the number of spoons in each monitored restaurant by

(2) the aggregate weight in pounds of the 730 participants.

This resulted in what Brewster and McAllister copyrighted as “The Fatty Spoon Index” (hereafter FSI)).

Once they noted the beginning FSI, the team then employed hundreds of work-study undergraduates and interns to actively surveil, follow, photograph, videotape, observe, and report each subject’s physical appearance to the FSI professional weight guesser panel immediately after he or she visited a monitored eatery. Also, following each participant’s exit from the restaurant, research assistants would then count and record the number of spoons in the eatery, and add them to the initial total.

Eight months later the results were in. The number of spoons in each monitored restaurant was directly related to poon - abandon spoonsthe weight of the remaining 49 of the initial 730 research participants. As a group, the FSI for the remaining 49 subjects rose markedly over the period by an average of 22.9. Thus, Brewster and McAllister demonstrated that

  • (1) of the 49 participants remaining on August 31, 2013, as their weight rose,
  • (2) the number of total spoons in the monitored restaurants rose nearly 23 times as much.

Furthermore, the results held whether the spoon was silverware or plastic, even sporks were not immune. The research pair’s conclusion: spoons, whether personally wielded or simply nearby, cause weight gain.

As Mr. Brewster observed:

“Spoons are nothing but fat delivery mechanisms. They know neither limit nor discretion, they endanger young and old, discriminating between neither. And what we’ve demonstrated is that the total number of spoons available to our group directly influenced the group’s weight gain, even those spoons that they did not actually use during their meals! Just being around spoons is dangerous.”

Agreeing with her research associate, Ms. McAllister, added,

“Our message to Americans – indeed, to everyone – is to reduce the number of spoons in their homes, particularly homes with children. They are highly susceptible to obesity and, as a parent myself, I’ve removed all spoons from my home. They do nothing but tempt the inevitable spoon-caused obesity, often self-inflicted or accidental. My family feels safer now. We no longer eat soup. Ice cream or pudding is far less fun using a fork or knife, so we rarely do so. One can live a safer life without those things.”

Mr. Brewster continued:

“Both Ms. McAllister and I recognize that many Americans will reject our message and may, in protest, accumulate ever more spoons, a result the spoon industry desires and applauds. We accept that. We are not anti-freedom. Yet, neither will either of us permit spoons within our homes, cars, our labs, or anywhere we control our physical environment. Nor shall we support any organization or political candidate that promotes spoon usage.”

It’s starting to catch on. Today, in Dallas, Texas, spoon protestors joined those who decry the complicity of gun dealers in crimes involving firearms (see below). Both maintain that gun sellers and spoon purveyors ought be carefully regulated. Both pictured protesters below agreed that the number of spoons and firearms for sale in the United States must become the objects of sensible government regulation, although the anti-gun protestor at the left went further, publicly displaying his demand that gun sellers be criminally charged as accomplices.

In closing, thank you Congressman Gohmert for highlighting this issue. Perhaps the Spoon Usage Coalition will get the message. If not, don’t blame Mr. Louie Gohmert!

Neo: What truth?

Spoon boy: There is no spoon.

Neo: There is no spoon?

We can only hope and work toward that day . . .

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Michael Matheron

From Presidents Ronald Reagan through George W. Bush, I was a senior legislative research and policy staff of the nonpartisan Library of Congress Congressional Research Service (CRS). I'm partisan here, an "aggressive progressive." I'm a contributor to The Fold and Nation of Change. Welcome to They Will Say ANYTHING! Come back often! . . . . . Michael Matheron, contact me at

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