U.S. Senator Edward J. Markey joined three other Democratic senators in sending a letter to NBCUniverisal and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association to complain about the Golden Globe Awards broadcast on Sunday, which they said showed celebrities using electronic cigarettes on TV.
Markey, along with Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin of Illinois, Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut co-signed the letter that said the show serves to “glamorize smoking and serve as celebrity endorsements that could encourage young fans to begin smoking traditional cigarettes or e-cigarettes," reported Roll Call.
“The Golden Globes celebrates entertainers who
are an influence on young fans. We ask the Hollywood Foreign Press Association
and NBC Universal to take actions to ensure that future broadcasts of the
Golden Globes do not intentionally feature images of e-cigarettes. Such action
would help to avoid the glamorization of smoking and protect the health of
young fans,” they wrote.
In September, Attorney General Martha Coakley and 39 other attorneys general across the country sent a letter to the Food and Drug Administration asking to “move quickly to ensure that all tobacco products are tested and regulated to ensure that companies do not continue to sell or advertise to our nation’s youth.”
There are no federal age restrictions on e-cigarettes and no rules about advertising e-cigarettes to youths. Big tobacco companies have recently entered the e-cigarette market and e-cigarette sales are expected to reach $1.7 billion this year, according to The Boston Globe.
The Massachusetts Medical Society also voted to oppose marketing, sales and use of e-cigarettes and other nicotine delivery products especially to minors.