Graphic Warnings On Cigarette Packs To Encourage Smokers Kick The Habit!
As part of FDA anti-smoking campaign starting from June 22, 2011, graphic warnings to encourage smokers kick the habit will be depicted on the cigarette packs.
Moreover the proposal requires the graphic warnings should appear also in cigarette advertisements and occupy minimum 20% of the ads!
The Food and Drugs Administration in accordance with the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, is proposing 36 images designed to make confirmed smokers - and potential smokers - think twice before lighting up a cigarette.
The images range from a cartoon figure of a mother blowing smoke into her baby's face as an illustration of secondhand smoking harm to the macabre. A printed warning stating that cigarettes cause cancer is illustrated by a disgusting photo of a man apparently in the end stages of lung cancer. Another warning that cigarettes are addictive shows a smoker exhaling through a tracheotomy hole cut into his throat.
A recent WHO publication also highlighted findings from Australia and New Zealand discovered that graphic health warnings improved knowledge of smoking harm and cessation related behavior.
Of smokers surveyed in Australia, 57% said that graphic health warnings have set them to thinking about quitting. Of those who quited, 62% said the warning labels have encouraged them give up smoking.
Undoubtedly images are impressing and won't leave any potential smoker indifferent. However if we start labeling all things that are dangerous, will anything remain without a label?
Here are some independent opinions taken from Facebook:
Christine Whitmarsh: What will they be putting on bottles of Jack Daniels, vodka, beer, etc.?
Jud Domenici: I find it hypocritical that these anti-smoking ads are OK'd by our government, yet cigarette ads are not. Freedom of speech and free commerce, my ass. I am a smoker and pay a lot of taxes that non-smokers do not. People should shake my hand rather than look at me like I'm breaking a law or something.
Rebecca M. Thomas: I'm a smoker, and those warnings will not make me quit. Both of my parents smoked when we were kids - in the house, in the car - and all of us are healthy adults. Not that I encourage it - just saying there are far worse things I see parents do to kids.
Clint Jolly: I'm pretty damned sure that smokers know they are killing themselves. It's a worthless to add these images to cigarettes. Why not spend the money to help people quit if they feel so inclined?
Mark Pipes: I see plenty of ads for cigarettes. Nope, [the Holy Trinity] is drinking, gambling and whoring.
Ursula Powers Sindlinger: Overkill. Literally. Especially when state and local governments nationwide depend on cigarette taxes for so many things. Real hypocrisy is present.
In the end it must be said that the background of these strict measures is obvious. However, government and health organizations paying so much attention to the smoking harm, seem to ignore other humanity's global problems, which are not less serious and often lead to higher mortality rates.