Thursday, August 18, 2011

Probably the one time I'll do this...

It would seem that four of the five largest US tobacco companies are suing the federal government over a new series of new warning labels on cigarette packs (you can view them here).

The companies R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., Lorillard Tobacco Co., Commonwealth Brands Inc., Liggett Group LLC and Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company Inc. (all but Santa Fe are based in here in NC meaning NC kills a lot of people) are basing their suit on the grounds that their right to free speech is being violated by way of being required to place ads on their that amount to "a government-sponsored emotionally charged appeal to not use their legal products".

I have to admit that I agree with them. If you look at the ads they are very much meant to appeal to emotion and scare them out of smoking. Pretty counter-intuitive. No I'm not defending cigarettes but if this were an industry that we had some sort of respect for I would also think this is a bit unfair (imagine Coke being required to put some sort of "drinking soda can cause diabetes" ad on their drinks). However I've already thought of a solution.

Ingredients. Of all the products you can buy in stores cigarettes are about the one and only produce that you consume but don't have an ingredient listing for. If you want to scare people out of smoking let them know about ingredients like menthol (and how its in there to give a cooling sensation that distracts your body from the throat and lung irritation of the smoke you're inhaling). No need to pull on the heart strings, hit them with cold hard facts.