According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) ," Cigarette smoking and exposure to tobacco smoke are associated with premature death from chronic diseases, economic losses to society, and a substantial burden on the United States health-care system." The most recent data from the CDC, tabulated for the years of 2000-2004 concluded that, "cigarette smoking and exposure to tobacco smoke resulted in at least 443,000 premature deaths, approximately 5.1 million Years of potential life lost, and $96.8 billion in productivity losses annually in the United States.
I understand the reason behind those anti-smoking ads we see on television that show a real victim and the consequence of their years of smoking. But showing a woman without her arms or legs or a man with a hole in his throat, only able to communicate with some vibrating voice machine, is scaring the heck out of my seven-year-old daughter, when it airs as a commercial, and likely having a minimal impact on people who smoke.
I think there must be a better way , a more appropriate way, to get some message, even if it may be hard to communicate with the fools that smoke, to stop smoking. I first considered the idea of changing the name of cigarettes to cancer sticks but since smoking kills even more people by causing heart attacks, strokes and chronic lung disease I thought that would be like calling the Nazis Gypsy murderers ; true, but an enormous underestimation of the amount of murders they committed against other groups of people,especially the Jews.
In case you don’t comprehend this and just think that smoking is only associated with one type of cancer, lung cancer, here is a list of all the cancers that are definitely associated with smoking: In fact the greatest risk of developing pancreatic cancer, which carries an almost automatic death sentence, is smoking! Just ask friends and relatives of Patrick Swayze.
Head and neck cancers, including esophagus
Lower urinary tract, including renal pelvis, ureter, and bladder
Nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses
J Natl Cancer Inst 2004; 96:99.
But why stop there? Smoking also increases the risk of lung infections, type II diabetes, osteoporosis, stomach ulcers, gum disease, low birth weight, sicker babies to those who smoke, will increase the risk of death for anyone who lives with a smoker, and results in more general sickness and days lost at work because of it.
I then considered the idea of putting skull and crossbones on the package but thought that some idiots might find the package attractive.
I eventually came up with the idea of having all manufacturers of this toxin change the name from cigarettes to morons; that's right morons, and even suggest that this change be added to the dictionary. On each pack would be printed morons. When a person requested a pack they would request a pack of morons. The surgeon general print on the package might be something like this; Smoking Morons causes lung cancer, heart disease, emphysema, and may complicate pregnancy. I would also add: Your family will be very upset when you drop dead from one of these diseases. You must be a Moron to smoke a Moron.
Let’s stop putting those “Creature Feature” style commercials on television and, instead, place photos of those disfigured smokers inside a pack of Morons. It’s not appropriate for any child’s mind to deal with those ghastly images. We should not cause nightmares for our children, that accidentally come across these foolish ads, but rather create nightmarish fears for those who continue to smoke.