In a bid to curb the tobacco smoking epidemic which is known to have adverse effects on general health of the population, the Canadian government made it a requirement that cigarette manufacturers looking to sell their products in Canada put warnings on cigarette boxes advising smokers of severe health problems their habit may lead to. Because mere words failed to deliver, the warnings were later upgraded with graphic images of possible complications smokers of tobacco products may develop.
As of Tuesday June 19, 2012 packages of cigarettes and little cigars sold in Canada must carry graphic pictures, such as gory close ups of cancer-infected mouth or the heartbreaking images of Barb Tarbox who, at the age of 42 died of lung cancer caused by smoking. Canada’s Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq made it a law that 75% of the cigarette packaging contains warnings with in-your-face gore.
Canada’s Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq also expressed that this new law is “part of an ongoing federal effort to inform Canadians, particularly young people, about the perils of tobacco use“. In other words – this new initiative by the Canadian government involves flashing of gory images in everyone’s faces, but especially the faces of young people. Free gore for everyone, regardless of age, brought to you by the Canadian government, paid from the money by the Canadian taxpayers like myself. Is it by now clear to everyone where I’m headed with this???
According to Statistics Canada, 25.9% of Canadians aged 12 and older smoked tobacco products in 2001. By 2011 the number dropped to 20%. Granted, it would be foolish to assume that use of gore on cigarette packages was the sole reason why there’s been a decline in the number of smokers in Canada, but fact of a matter is, the decline did start to occur after these images were introduced.
This tells us one thing – even the government is well aware of the fact that warning campaigns are much more effective when accompanied with graphic images. It also tells us that when it comes to delivering the message, the government is more than willing to embrace obscenity. So since Canadian government threatened to press obscenity charges against Best Gore, shouldn’t the Canadian government face the same obscenity charges for making it a law to have equally obscene images placed on cigarette boxes? Or are we all supposed to take the sheep way and embrace the double standards?
How come I don’t hear the Canadian sheep bleeping their stupid snouts over the images of bed ridden lung cancer patient Barb Tarbox being used? Her family suffered a terrible loss when she succumbed to cancer to have the images of her last moments in life, in which she looks the way they surely don’t want to remember her as, exploited all over the country. Oh wait, so all of a sudden the sheep realize that what I said before – that there are people who realize that the loss of their loved one cannot be reverted, but their death may be used to help prevent it from happening to others – is true but refuse to retain me in the equation I originally brought up.
And how about the Canadian authorities implying that they were gonna press obscenity charges against me and Best Gore? Should I press obscenity charges against the Canadian government for doing exactly the same damn thing and publically admitting that “young people” are their primary targets, with children as young as 12 year old being part of the target group but anyone, regardless of age being offered unrestricted view of the gore?
Just as the use of graphic images on cigarette packages is proving to be effective in reducing the number of smokers, which in turn reduces the health care and disability (cancer treatment) care costs, so does the use of graphic images on Best Gore continuously prove effective in deterring reckless behavior in many other walks of life. Over the 4+ years of running this website, I’ve received thousands of emails and saw hundreds of comments posted which contained confessions from random people for whom the breaking point was the exposure to real life content on Best Gore.
Best Gore literally does exactly what the Canadian government is doing – uses graphic images to show people what happened to others so they can take charge of their future well being by making more educated decisions. If Best Gore is guilty of obscenity, then so is the Canadian government. I’ll see you in jail, Mr. Harper!