FCTC ignoring founding principles

“The Eighth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP8) to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) is less than three months away. Taking place in Geneva from 1 to 6 October, it will focus on topics such as the shaping of a medium-term strategic framework, which will determine the actions to be taken by the Parties over the next five years, and the advances and challenges revealed in the Global Progress Report on Implementation of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

The Conference will also be the starting point for a wider application of the WHO FCTC not only for tobacco control, but also as an international treaty to support sustainable development, fight climate change and defend human rights.”

http://www.who.int/fctc/en/

For those not familiar with the “Conference of the Parties” (COP), it is a bi-annual event where around a thousand grey, soulless, anti-smoking extremists from all over the world swan off to a swanky conference centre (last time around in Delhi, India) to discuss a variety or authoritarian measures to further prohibit smokers from enjoying their habit. They also spend a lot of time debating whether or not the public and press should be allowed to witness what goes on, along with debating whether or not to ban e-cigs and other harm reduction products.

Oh, and it’s all funded by the taxpayer of the attending countries.

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American Cancer Society’s Confused Position

In somewhat of a surprising move, the American Cancer Society has quietly updated its position statement on electronic cigarettes. I say quietly because there is no mention of this update on any of the social media channels, nor was there any special press release or blog post on their website.

Naturally, doing that makes me a tad suspicious.

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Vaping as a Stick

I’m sure I don’t need to remind you, but vaping isn’t a stick to go around beating smokers with. It isn’t purely a cessation tool, though most alphabet organisations would love you to believe that.

Sure, most vapers view vaping as a way off tobacco and bully for them. Some view it as a cessation method; ‘cos they wanted to stop smoking and nothing else worked for them. Again, bully for them. Vaping is, by and large, a flexible and thoroughly enjoyable pastime.

Thing is, most in public health, and tobacco control in particular, will never see vaping as anything but a cessation tool, or a threat to their funding. They would love to have vapers work with them to “end the tobacco epidemic“, and while yes, beating public health around the head with a stack of evidence to get them to back off has had a remarkable effect; after all the UK is the most forward-looking on ecigs, it is far from being perfect. Mostly, public health and tobacco control should just fuck off, and leave us alone.

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