Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Why this blog?

I started this blog after I read the article published in the NYT by Catherine Saint Louis in March 2012 about young children having oral surgery because of too many cavities (caused by soft drinks without adequate oral hygiene).
My involvement in tobacco control had similarly been triggered by an article in the press, about secondhand smoke.
As much as I had been aware of the growing number of obese people (and children), this article was a real shocker: it illustrated how bad and costly the situation was.
When I started collecting background information I was immediately fascinated by the similarities between the Big Food/Big Soda arguments and the ones used by Big Tobacco.
The strategies were identical and often they relied on the same PR spinmasters to try confusing the public.
After 25+ years in tobacco control I was/still am in a transition phase and mood but still not sure where to go. Considering the similarities between the industries tactics I think my long experience at organizing tobacco control advocacy could prove valuable to organize the nascent obesity control movement.
The fight against obesity has been going on for many years so I could understand that many people involved would be shocked that I label it as "nascent" but from an organizational point of view and if one compares it with the tobacco control movement, one can see it is much less structured.
In that context I think I can contribute to develop tools and campaigns that would help build a more effective advocacy oriented organization than what exists now.
As I see it there are many active groups and individuals but there is still a lack of coordination, a lack of organizing to bring the issues, the campaigns to a much higher level.
If you are interested, contact me: philippeboucher2 at gmail.com

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