Feedback: Anti-Smoking Ads Too Graphic?


Graphic? Tough to watch?

Maybe, but the anti-smoking advertisements are designed to help.

The New York State Health Department is behind the campaign showing extreme damage caused by smoking.

For some smokers, it's overkill.

"There isn't a person alive who doesn't know that smoking carries a risk. Advise them, if you like, offer assistance to those who would like to stop," said Audrey Silk, of Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment.

That begs the question: Are the ads really working or are people simply turing off their TV to avoid them?

("Honestly, I just turn the channel or fast forward through the commercial because, mostly, I DVR everything. So honestly, they don't really impact me at all," said viewer Jared St. Croix.

But there may be an impact - smokers rights groups say the ads leave a negative stigma on smokers.

"(They) demonize smokers. That's the subtle message underneath the alleged warning about health," said Silk.

Officials at Unique Cigs in Watertown say the ads could even hurt business - the business of selling electronic cigarettes, which are said to be a healthier alternative to cigarettes.

"I think they do lump it all together as one, that just because it does have a nicotine product in it, that it's a cigarette, but it's not," said Kristen Nercado of Unique Cigs.

As for the ads, graphic or not, they're sticking around - unless you just turn off your TV.

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Thursday, December 8, 2016
, Watertown, NY

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