The contest continues…

At the risk of running multiple threads but with the potential of gaining new participants I am starting another post to buttress the good entries already in place.

Here’s one from me:

In a rare public appearance today, the typically reclusive NYT health writer and journalism professor Roni Rabin came forward to answer questions regarding her article with its endorsement of the Canary in the Mines Petition being circulated. Previously Rabin had helped nationalize the concern about 3rd hand smoke but had in that case remained silent after her influential piece.

As reported in the latest article, a consortium of anti-smoking health organizations following the lead of the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids suggested that what was missing in tobacco control were the voices of the children themselves. What would address this need would be a panel of children who would decide whether the tobacco companies were indeed marketing to them with their new smokeless products.

The same group at Pediatrics who did such fine work in regards to third hand smoke were asked to design the study that would show how much we needed children to weigh in on this important matter that directly concerned them. In an earlier interview, one of that team said “its really just a question of asking people “do you think tobacco companies should be allowed to market to children?” and if you say “no” then that is a fair indication that they are already doing so and that we direly need this new way of dealing with it.

Of course, because they are children and it is unethical and quite dangerous to expose them to even the sight of tobacco products of any kind, the Pediatrics group suggested that adults would be exposed to the toxic goods and then describe the colors, tastes and package design to the children (and if it helps tell them what products they are familiar with that they resembled) and then the children could safely tell them if they thought they were attractive and if those companies were trying to make them use them. (The children would receive continual reassurance that the companies could not get to them in the testing rooms).

Asked whether children should also be part of the FDA new tobacco control plans, Rabin nodded and then waving her arms and backing up croaked “fear good; tobacco bad” a number of times. She became progressively more excited and before any more questions could be asked had backed herself right out of the room.


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  • CMNissen  On May 27, 2010 at 8:51 am

    In the same vein as tobacco and kids, how about:

    Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids demands that tobacco companies stop making ‘spitless’ smokeless tobacco, and go back to the old (let’s call them ‘spitfull’) products.

    “It just makes sense. We need to be able to tell if kids are using these products, and the current products are just too discreet,” said a member.

    They are also offering an alternative to going ‘spitfull’: Dye the tobacco bright green, so users can be easily ferreted out. Making snus pouches at least 2 inches long and 1 inch deep would also be beneficial, since a large wad of snus will make a visible bulge in a child’s cheek.

    • CMNissen  On May 27, 2010 at 9:02 am

      …And of course, the “evidence” for how successful this campaign will be will show up shortly after this initial announcement in the journal of Pediatrics. It will consist of surveying (as per Paul’s posting above) a panel of children, asking them if they would be more likely to use a bright green or ‘spitfull’ tobacco product, or a small, more discreet tobacco product. The favouring of the more discreet products will be taken as evidence for the new campaign.

  • Paul  On May 27, 2010 at 8:59 am

    A few prominent members of the tobacco control movement came forward to demand that smokeless tobacco products be made as harmful as they are supposed to be. “If these products don’t create the mouth cancers we say they do, how are we supposed to stop people from using them?. Misinformation is all very fine, but let’s put our money where our mouth is….the current product safety is undermining our message. We demand that the authorities step in and correct this terrible state of affairs……THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!”

  • Paul  On May 27, 2010 at 9:11 am

    Instead of spitfull let’s call them “juicy” or “mouthwatering” or “saliva-rific”.

    • CMNissen  On May 27, 2010 at 9:38 am

      Ooh, “saliva-rific” – I like it. (Kind of brings a whole new meaning to Camel’s “Stare Back” campaign. Just had a mental image of someone drooling at a restaurant or pub, with a huge wad of green snus in their mouth…)

  • Elaine Keller  On May 28, 2010 at 3:56 pm

    In an earlier interview, one of that team said “its really just a question of asking people “do you think the tobacco control community should be allowed to prevent harm reduction?” and if you say “no” then that is a fair indication that they are already doing so and that we direly need a new way of dealing with it. And if you say “yes” then that is a fair indication that you ARE a member of the tobacco control community.

  • smokles  On May 28, 2010 at 9:09 pm

    Leading tobacco control scientists met recently and under the imprimatur of the Delphi method came to a consensus that all research into the benefits of nicotine or any notions of harm reduction were intrinsically flawed to the point of lacking any integrity of true evidence. The motion was put forward that in the interests of making any progress into stemming the tobacco use epidemic that no further research into these areas should be tolerated. Said one of the participants “these are funds that could have gone into further exploring the perniciousness of the tobacco industry in its obvious subversion of our youth and maintenance of addiction in the general population”.

    WHO officials said that they were considering endorsing the motion.

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