U.S. tries to out-gross Canada on cigarette warnings
Taking a page from the Health Canada playbook, the American Food and Drug Administration unveiled 36 proposed warning labels for American cigarette packs this week. The graphic, full-colour labels are designed to cover half of a cigarette pack’s surface area—that’s quite a bit more forceful than the measly one-liners currently in place. The new labels will be mandatory by October 2012, at which point Americans will have one less reason to make fun of Canada (and hey, maybe they’ll even work for Obama). Only nine of the labels released yesterday will be chosen, but we thought we’d take the time to pick some of them apart anyway. Here, a head-to-head comparison of Canadian and American anti-smoking gross-out prowess.
CANADA: The label is scary. Just look how diseased that brain is—well, we think it’s diseased, since we’re not totally sure how brains are supposed to look.
U.S.: Are we seriously supposed to believe this guy is having a heart attack and a stroke at the same time?
CANADA: This seems to go without saying, since just about everything hurts babies. Still, seeing one in intensive care tugs at the heartstrings.
U.S.: If a mother is so far gone that she’d blow smoke directly into her baby’s face, as depicted here, then she’s probably beyond being affected by anti-cigarette labels.
CANADA: There’s something dubious about the fact that Health Canada is relying on data that is nearly 15 years old here. Still, if it’s true, it’s pretty crazy.
U.S.: Um, is this the section of the graveyard where all the non-smokers who died from tobacco-related diseases are buried?
CANADA: Pretty ineffectual. Anyone who doesn’t know that cigarettes are addictive probably has other problems to worry about.
U.S.: Who wouldn’t want to be this guy?
CANADA: This guy has lung cancer, and he’s totally young. Just look at that goatee.
U.S.: Smokers usually aren’t this handsome when they die.
CANADA: Simple and to the point. “Cigarettes cause mouth diseases,” with a picture of a diseased mouth.
U.S.: Shouldn’t this read “Warning: cigarettes cause mouth diseases”?