We’re having a hard time with this ruling. On the one hand, as a communications firm, we strongly support the First Amendment and will go to battle any day to support it. On the other hand, tobacco companies have been peddling death and disease for decades now and need to be stopped. The current warning labels aren’t enough. These new, graphic labels would have gotten the point across that tobacco kills. It’s a shame that they won’t be used on cigarette packaging.
However, the images from these warning labels aren’t going to waste. Our good friends at the American Lung Association have included a couple of the images on their redesigned youth anti-tobacco website, Ysmoke.org. Look for them on the Facts pages.
What do you think? Too gruesome? Is it a violation of the tobacco companies’ right to free speech? Or are these images the kind that are needed to wake people up to the dangers of smoking?