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Does Legislation Change Culture?

Some results are in about how the culture of smoking is changing.  The government has legislated that packages must be plain, they have forced shopkeepers to lock them away in cupboards and they have raised the tax levels on them to make them unaffordable.  So let’s have a look at how much this has impacted on smokers…

South Australian Health minister, Jack Snelling reported that after all these measures, the smoking rates in his state have increased from 16.7% to 19.4%.  So that means that since this legislation has been put in place, almost three out of every one hundred South Australians have decided that they too, are going to take up smoking.

What to do?  The research has indicated to the government decision makers that the reason the rates have risen is because their media campaigns were dropped for the sake of budget cuts.  As such, they have decided to invest $1,100,000 to reinstate media campaigns.

Whether it’s film and television, music, graphic design or another area of the Arts, it has been demonstrated here again that the Arts are a lot more effective in changing culture than having a government make up more rules.

It will be interesting to see what the creatives come up with to change the culture and bring the rate back down.  Maybe this?  Or possibly this clever gem?  But if you want to see first hand how much our culture has changed, check out these ads from the culture of the fifties and sixties.



Ever changing; Thy Kingdom come


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