Odi profanum vulgus et arceo


Só Saúde (SS)

In Nazi Germany, for instance, abstinence from tobacco was a "national socialist duty" (Hitler gave a gold watch to associates who quit the habit, though this didn't stop them lighting up in the Berlin bunker once they heard the Fuhrer had committed suicide). Armed with such senior sanction -- loyally, Reichsfuhrer Heinrich Himmler banned SS men from smoking, though not shooting, on duty, and Propaganda Minister Joseph Gobbels was obliged to hide his ciggie whenever he was filmed -- anti-tobacco activists succeeded in banning smoking from government offices, civic transport, university campuses, rest homes, post offices, many restaurants and bars, hospital grounds and workplaces. Tobacco taxes were raised, unsupervised cigarette vending machines were banned, and there were calls for a ban on smoking while driving.

Thanks to the Ministry of Science and Education, and the Reich Health Office, posters were produced depicting smoking as the typically despicable habit of Jews, jazz musicians, Gypsies, Indians, homosexuals, blacks, communists, capitalists, cripples, intellectuals and harlots. Zealous lobbyists descended into the schools, terrifying children with tales of impotence and racial impurity.

If some of these measures appear familiar today, then consider the rules laid down in 1941 regarding tobacco advertising. "Images that create the impression that smoking is a sign of masculinity are barred, as are images depicting men engaged in activities attractive to youthful males (athletes or pilots, for example)," and "may not be directed at sportsmen or automobile drivers," while "advocates of tobacco abstinence or temperance must not be mocked." Advertisements were banned from films, billboards, posters and "the text sections of journals and newspapers." Nevertheless, even the Nazis couldn't equal the recent ban on smoking on death row, meaning prisoners about to undergo massive electric shocks are forbidden from indulging in "one last drag" -- talk about cruel and unusual punishment.

Extractos de Hitler's Anti-Tobacco Campaign