Politicians Speak Out Against E-Cigs at the 2014 Golden Globes

Every year, hundreds of celebrities hit the red carpet and attend the Golden Globe awards where the best film performances are recognized in a big one-night celebration. The 2014 Golden Globe Awards was as exciting as ever with hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler poking fun at the celebrities and making the event a night to remember. Unfortunately, not everyone was pleased with the award show after tuning in on Sunday night. In fact, four U.S. senators wrote a letter, calling out the networks for their perceived mistakes. The politicians were not offended by the risqué humor or the immodest dress code. Instead, they were angry that two celebrities used e-cigarettes on screen.

In the letter, four democratic senators called for NBC Universal and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association to take action against e-cig use on television. The letter made an angry protest against the Golden Globes broadcast and was officially signed by Dick Durbin, D-IL, Richard Blumenthal, D-CT, Sherrod Brown, D-OH, and Edward J. Markey, D-MA.

e-cig-golden-globesOnly two celebrities were spotted puffing their e-cigs on screen. The first was Julia Louis-Dreyfus in a planned spoof where she mocked the hoity-toity celebrity lifestyle in dark sunglasses, fancy attire, and an obvious electronic cigarette. As Fey and Poehler poked fun at Louis-Dreyfus the camera panned to her where she sat puffing on a blue-tipped e-cigarette. It was a fleeting moment, meant to be funny until the politicians got involved. The other celeb vaper was Leonardi di Caprio. He is frequently filmed with an e-cig in hand, so it wasn’t surprising that he was seen vaping at the Golden Globes.

The senators insisted that even these short moments of e-cig screen time could be damaging. “In light of studies showing that exposure to on-screen smoking is a major contributor to smoking initiation among youth, we are troubled that these images glamorize smoking and serve as celebrity endorsements that could encourage young fans to begin smoking traditional cigarettes or e-cigarettes,” the senators wrote.

It’s interesting that the politicians acted so quickly to write a public letter condemning electronic cigarette use. It stands to reason that these senators thought such a letter would boost their status among family viewers that were also unhappy to see vaping on screen. However, the senators completely ignored other questionable aspects of the Golden Globes, including some risqué jokes about Jonah Hill masturbating at a pool party.

Apparently, talking about public masturbation is no longer taboo, as long as you don’t do it with an electronic cigarette in hand. This is another ridiculous moment when politicians prey on any opportunity to advance their private agendas. Only this time, it was really a major fail. Do you think the politicians were right to publish the open letter?

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Author Focus: Katie Bercham
Katie actually had a negative first experience of electronic cigarettes, picking up a cheap and horrible model from my local mall. Thanks to a chance meeting with co-editor David, she hasn’t had a tobacco cigarette in over 2 years. She brings a strong female voice to the e-cig community... Read Full Profile >