Government ministers and anti-smoking groups have abandoned their campaign to stop adults smoking, and are instead focussing their attentions on stopping cigarette manufacturers pasting glitter and cartoon characters on packaging.
Currently, cigarette manufacturers hire illustrators from well-loved children’s television programmes, such as Teletubbies and Pokemon, in an effort to attract toddler smokers. Under the government’s proposal, these pictures will be replaced with either a picture of an old person burning in hell, or someone with the skin ripped clean from their lips, after leaving a cigarette in their mouth for far too long.
‘It’s wrong that children are being attracted to smoke by fucking glitzy designs on packets,’ mumbles Health Secretary, Andrew Lansley. ‘It’s akin to dressing a dirty paedophile in a fluffy teddy-bear suit and expecting a child not to be attracted to him.'
Mother of four, Theresa Sandwell agrees ‘I agree with that bloke. The other day I went into my local shop to buy some sweets for my 2-year-old, Triton. He was attracted to the glitzy packaging on the cigarettes that were stored behind the counter; alongside the alcohol, condoms, razors and knives, and so I bought him some. He’s now an addict. Give him heroin.'
Martin Dockrell, director of policy and research at Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) backs this view; ‘See? I’m right. They use it [packaging] to seduce our kids.' Mr Dockrell looks around conspiringly, before whispering: ‘I’m not a smoker, but I carry empty packets with me. It helps.’
Karina Evans 2010