The American Legacy Foundation, led by Christine Gregoire, has caved in to
threats from Philip Morris and a couple of pro-tobacco attorneys general
and pulled the strong ads that they had planned to run. The threats that
the industry made are standard operating procedure.
In those states that have stood up to the industry, the industry backed
down. Here in California, when the tobacco industry threatened to sue the
state and television stations refused to run "Nicotine Soundbites," an ad
based on the Waxman Hearings, Kimberly Belshe (the state health director
and a former tobacco lobbyist) stood up to them and the industry and TV
stations backed down.
In those that have not, the resulting campaigns have been heavily
self-censored and ineffectual.
If ALF wants to be more than window dressing and an excuse for the tobacco
industry to oppose state funding for tobacco control, Ms. Gregorie needs to
grow a backbone.
Our upcoming book (shipping in a couple weeks), TOBACCO
WAR: INSIDE THE CALIFORNA BATTLES ends with nine "rules
for beating the tobacco industry." ALF is violating ALL of them.
The public is public health's best asset. Keep the fight public and the
The tobacco industry will try to work in the shadows and through
intermediaries. Confront these groups and force them apart from the
The early implementing phases of tobacco control legislation are very
important. Bad precedents, once set, are exceptionally hard to reverse.
Avoid compromises early in the process.
Do not be afraid of controversy, use it.
Press for and defend high quality programs.
Beware of reasonable sounding compromises in the anti-tobacco program
(such as concentrating on kids or avoiding attacks on the tobacco
industry), even when these suggestions come from "friends" in the health
The battle does not end when a tobacco control initiative is passed.
The battle does not end when the Legislature enacts implementing
legislation, even if it is a good bill.
The battle does not end when the health department or schools implement a
battle never ends.
source: Stan Glantz