French ads compare smoking with oral rape

There's an interesting debate going on in Paris about these new anti-smoking ads, which liken teen cigarette addiction to forced oral sex. The images themselves are mildly scandalous, though they don't quite seem to match with the tagline, "To smoke is to be a slave to tobacco." But beyond their vaguely pornographic motif, the ads have sparked a fascinating and complex discussion about sexual abuse. According to The New York Times, one commenter on the anti-smoking site said the campaign "trivializes sexual abuse—worse, it implies guilt on the part of the abused." That's a pretty valid point. In fact, the analogy really falls apart if you take it past the initial impression of "You're taking it from the man." In the end, all this debate over mixed metaphors is probably secondary to the fact that the ads are simply not effective. As France's own anti-smoking chief told La Parisien newspaper, "This will shock adults while not scaring kids." Via @caff on Twitter.

—Posted by David Griner