Last year, this event so heavily leaned towards tobacco harm reduction that even Simon Clark of Forest took to saying that he felt like "a pork chop at a Barmitzvah". It's fairly understandable seeing as all tobacco companies are now producing risk-reduced products that they would wish to discuss them with people who are experts in the field. It's no secret that the industry is moving in that direction and you'd think that 'public health' would be pleased about the fact that industry emphasis is shifting away from lit tobacco and onto safer products.
You'd also think they'd be pleased about recognised public health academics being invited to teach "Big Tobacco" how to do things properly, wouldn't you?
But, no. You see, for the dinosaurs in the tobacco control industry, it's long since ceased to be about health, but more an ideological crusade against all industry in general. Hence why one of the academics who has agreed to speak has been sent a distinctly sinister letter by Tobacco Free Kids, a dysfunctional and fanatical American organisation which would collapse tomorrow if everyone stopped smoking and their Master Settlement Agreement payments ceased.
You can read it below.
These vile, disgusting people simply cannot contemplate anyone sitting around a table and talking about risk-reduced products in a calm and civilised manner, simply because they despise industry and are petrified of the consequences to their careers if e-cigs and other products take hold. They've been attempting to inflict this kind of fear and intimidation on their own for decades, as Michael Siegel and James Enstrom (pursued for over a decade for producing the wrong result in a SHS study) can attest to. They are, for want of a more contemptuous word, scum.
They have no care about the health of any population; they only care about their own salaries and perpetuating the irrational hatred they have for smokers and the people who provide popular products that smokers like to buy. Their chief method for ensuring these prejudices and their own self-enrichment are enshrined forever is to lie 24-7 and smear and bully anyone who doesn't submit to their will. Everyone must toe the line and fuck the consequences.
Tobacco Free Kids - who despise e-cigs and spread provable falsehoods about them on a daily basis - and others like them, are nothing but grubby criminals, and I do so hope that one day they are made to pay for their immense catalogue of felonies.
I also hope that Dr Russell ignores this repulsive intimidation and attends anyway. Personally, if I'd received it I would have used it to wrap roadkill with and sent it back to them with a few choice words written with a sharpie.
It's never been about health, you know. Always remember who is on the side of the angels here.