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Should warning labels on cigarette packs be graphic?

posted 6/23/2011 2:35:07 AM |
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This was announced by the Department of Health and Human Services Tuesday (June 21, 2011)

Federal health officials yesterday released their final selection of nine graphic warning labels to cover the top half of cigarette packages beginning next year, over the opposition of tobacco manufacturers.

In the first major change to warning labels in more than a quarter-century, the graphic images will include photographs of horribly damaged teeth and lungs and a man exhaling smoke through a tracheotomy opening in his neck.

The Department of Health and Human Services selected nine color images from 36 proposed to accompany larger text warnings.

Health-advocacy groups praised the government plan and hope the images will deter new smokers and motivate existing smokers to quit.

The images are to cover the upper half of the front and back of cigarette packages produced after September 2012, as well as 20percent of the space in cigarette advertisements.

"These labels are frank, honest and powerful depictions of the health risks of smoking, and they will help encourage smokers to quit and prevent children from smoking," Kathleen Sebelius, the secretary of health and human services, said yesterday in a statement.

Leading tobacco companies were threatening legal action, saying the images will unfairly hurt their property and free-speech rights by obscuring their brand names in retail displays, demonizing the companies and stigmatizing smokers.

The government won one case last year in a federal court in Kentucky on its overall ability to require larger warning labels with images. That case is before the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The new labels were required under anti-smoking legislation giving the Food and Drug Administration power to regulate, but not ban, tobacco products. The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act required action on the graphic warning labels by today.

Packages also will be required to display a toll-free telephone number for smoking-cessation services.

The Columbus Dispatch

Do you think the Department of Health and Human Services should be dictating to the tobacco companies what to show on the packaging of their products in regards to graphic images other than the written warning label itself warning the risk of cancer that's been in place since 1986?

I personally can't stand smoking. I hate it and think it's nasty, and the smoke does bother me. However, do I think the government should be telling tobacco companies what to put on their packaging other than warning people the risk of cancer that's been currently in place since 1986 on them? I think forcing the tabacco companies with these graphics on their packaging is going a little too far. First off, cigarettes are legal for people over the age of 18. The tobacco companies are legitimate businesses, and the thought of the government dictating to businesses what to do, and what to put on their packaging as far as graphic images crosses the line in my opinion.

I'm starting to see the government intrude more and more when it comes to what people are eating now. I'm seeing pop (soda) being done away with in schools, more fruit and veggies being pushed on people, stores in the state of New York being taxed on sugar while it's being passed on to concumers by the state of New York.

Do we really need the "food police" to police everything we put into our bodies that can be bought over-the-counter?

The article and image(s) that take effect in Sept. 2012

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Jun 23 @ 2:54AM  
Yeah, I think it goes too far and sets a bad precedent. Next would be alcoholic beverages. Then all sorts of things are possible. How about pictures of morbidly obese people on the wrappers of a Big Mac or a diabetic with amputated feel on the wrapper of a Snickers bar or Pepsi can.

Jun 23 @ 3:10AM  
Like this candy bar warning?

Candy car warning

Jun 23 @ 4:03AM  
Like this candy bar warning?

If he wasn't dead, they could use a picture of John Candy

Jun 23 @ 6:26AM  
Yeah I saw that on the News also.....
We the PPL...Let them do all this crazy shit...
I guess the Ppl who do the Printing will benefit from all that!!!

This is a little But........
Just recently....the Price of Coffee went up..a considerable amount,...because of...whatever reasons ......Everyone knows that Caffeine isn't good for ya Right? Well...just as soon as the Price went up....they came out with this...Study!!!! Check this out!
Makes me wonder...if More Politicians were Tobacco farmers..if they would find some good in Tobacco
Do we really need the "food police" to police everything we put into our bodies that can be bought over-the-counter?
Ummmm Nope!!!

Jun 23 @ 7:42AM  
Just another fine example of a Nanny State, gone bad.
Usually ran by corrupt idiots that think they are intelligent, because 'this' is
how they say to run it, from the Faculity Lounge.
On paper, socialism looks great.... "They" just think the RIGHT people
have not been in charge, 'till now.

Cigarettes are the only legal item, if used correctly and as intended....that will kill you.
That warning is on them, already. These laws and regulations are not about public
safety, it's all about Control. And, tobacco taxes are a cash cow.

Jun 23 @ 8:03AM  
Damn!!! Is that study fucked up Alex..
I have type two diabetes and had prostate cancer too

Jun 23 @ 8:41AM  
I saw this story on our local news here and to be quite honest, I'm tired of the government and their "nanny state" position.

They want to tell us what to eat, what to drink, who we can or cannot marry, what we should should be OUR decision on how we are living our lives. It's called FREEDOM. Yet, our government little by little is butting in and taking over.

Yeah, the pictures go too far. It's stupid, it's a waste of time and money because those who smoke, first of all, they chose to pick up that first cigarette, and people can quit, if they want to bad enough. Yes, it's addictive, yes, there are health issues..but guess what...WE ARE ALREADY AWARE OF THAT!

I say we fire them all, wipe the slate clean, and elect some people who know what the Constitution really means and stays out of our lives! (Only in a perfect world will that ever happen. )

Yes, I'm fed up with the government and their deciding what is best for me.

Jun 23 @ 9:09AM  
Why not just put an image of a skull 'n crossbones on everything THEY think is bad for us- including thong swim suits for the ladies- I mean, if a b/f or husband catches you banging his woman, that could be deadly too!!


Jun 23 @ 11:01AM  
I have to agree with Sugar on they think that we don't have a brain cell in our heads? We have, or SHOULD have the right to make our own decisions....I say...Government, get the hell out of our lives!

Since when do they know what is right for every American???

Jun 23 @ 2:51PM  
I roll my own because I have time and its a way around the taxes on cigarettes. I think I will buy a pack for the next time I go out to eat just so i can sit it on the edge of the table for others to see.
When they outlawed smoking in resterants I thout about taking up dipping so I could have a dip after my meal and use a spit cup.

Jun 24 @ 12:03PM  
People already know it's bad for them and can lead to a miserable death. But they do it anyways. Changing the package warnings won't make a difference.
And the government is out of line with trying that.

I thout about taking up dipping so I could have a dip after my meal and use a spit cup.
That's not because you enjoy it or are addicted, it's just to gain attention and purposely piss people off (or gross them out). Sounds like you are just looking for a reaction or altercation and a way to say you are doing nothing wrong... Are you a politician?

saying the images will unfairly hurt their property and free-speech rights by obscuring their brand names in retail displays, demonizing the companies and stigmatizing smokers.
UNFAIRLY????? Let's not stigmatize them...let's just kill many of them and the people they are around. That would be much better... and make more money in the process.

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Should warning labels on cigarette packs be graphic?