U.S. Cigarette Packaging Update
A while back we posted a story about the new cigarette warning labels due to cover cigarette packing by September 2012. We figured we would update our readers on the latest news.
As of Monday November 7, 2011, U.S. District Judge Richard Leon has blocked this legislation. Leon was prolific in his disagreement, writing a 29-page opinion on the matter. In Leon’s opinion, the graphic images the FDA has presented to grace the packaging of cigarettes were too graphic and oversized. The judge felt that the size of the labels also infringe on companies’ rights to free speech.
In 1966, the U.S. was the first country to require warning labels on cigarette packing. This method of education was responsible for a bigger decline in smoking rates than recorded in any other decade. The new warning labels that the FDA is promoting are similar to those found in other countries, would cover 75% of cigarette packaging and feature graphic images of long-time tobacco cigarette smokers.
Every person has the right to free speech, but should corporations also have that right? If so, would this proposal infringe on tobacco companies’ freedom of speech? Do you think that these images will help to deter smoking in the U.S. or will people light up regardless? As a provider of a smoke-free alternative, Finiti wants to know what you think.