98 e-Letters

published between 2006 and 2009

  • Smoking imagery in movies requires action now
    Jonathan D Klein

    Simon Chapman’s recent commentary on smoking in movies misses several important points with regard to the influence of media portrayal of tobacco on children’s health (1). Chapman fails to recognize the ease with which other socially questionable behavior is rated R in US films. Using the Motion Picture Association of America voluntary ratings system (2), use of the 'F' word as an exclamation twice, or once in a sexu...

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  • Late to the Party
    Stanton A Glantz

    I would have written Simon Chapman's editorial 15 years ago, when I first joined behind-the-scenes discussions in Hollywood to advocate the same "solutions" he is now. Serious and sustained efforts by many organizations (sometimes at substantial cost) to pursue the ideas Chapman is now proposing repeatedly failed. Indeed, the amount of smoking onscreen actually increased during this time. We only developed the Smoke...

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  • Australian government excludes tobacco industry from routine consultation
    Simon Chapman

    An important new marker of the denormalisation of the tobacco industry has occurred in Australia in 2008. It is traditional – indeed usually mandatory -- for industries which may be affected by proposed changes in government policy or legislation to be fully consulted through formal processes prior to any changes taking place. In 2008, the Australian government established a Preventative (sic) Health Task Force, with s...

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  • Identification of Jewish Ghetto in Rome
    Norbert Hirschhorn

    The authors's Figure 2 identifies the 'smokers' zone' overlaid on a map of modern Rome as resembling "the location of the Jewish ghetto during the Third Reich."

    In fact, a Jewish community has existed in Rome for over two thousand years. In 1555 Pope Paul IV created a walled-ghetto for Jews as one of a series of anti-semitic measures. The walls were torn down in 1870 when Italy was unified as a single nation, lea...

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  • Rate for New Zealand: typographical error
    Maria J Lopez

    The authors thank Holger Moeller for the previous e-letter. As he noticed, there is a typographical error in the number related to attributable deaths in New Zealand. The correct number is 8 per 100,000.

  • Passive smoking rate for New Zealand
    Holger Moeller

    I think the rate for New Zealand in the discussion was meant to be 8 per 100,000 and not 8 per 10,000 which would be rather high.

  • A Reply from R.M. Davis to JJ Boddwyn
    Ronald M. Davis

    Professor Boddewyn’s reply is interesting for what it admits and omits.

    He admits that the International Advertising Association (IAA) reports published in 1983 and 1986 were based on his editing of “the draft paper written by Paul Bingham [of British American Tobacco].” To my knowledge, there has been no such public admission previously by Professor Boddewyn, BAT, or IAA in the 20+ years since publication of tho...

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  • A Reply from JJ Boddwyn to R.M. Davis
    Jean J Boddewyn

    What a pleasure to be cited for something I published 25 years ago! It is, of course, less pleasant to be implicitly incriminated as being some sort of a “paid hack” for the tobacco industry. Besides, the intended harm has been done since the Editor did not have the academic courtesy of asking me to reply to this personal attack in the same issue where the article by R.M. Davis has appeared.

    In answering this ch...

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  • Regulation and precautions
    Jonathan D Liberman

    In response to our piece cautioning about the use of the ‘precautionary principle’ in debates about setting emissions limits, Nigel Gray writes that it has been around since the beginning of public health activity and offers as examples ‘[taking] the precaution of hunting for clean water on the grounds that doing nothing might allow epidemics of cholera, typhoid and hookworm to continue’ and the introduction of polio vac...

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  • Regulation and precautions
    Nigel J Gray

    Regulation and precautions Nigel Gray April 11, 2008

    Jonathon Lieberman worries about TobReg’s use of the precautionary principle as justification for recommending reduction of toxicants in cigarette emissions and suggests that the precautionary principle is a 1970’s development. I thought it had been around since the beginning of Public Health activity when we took the precaution of hunting for clean water on...

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