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Can graphic images of meth addicts influence potential users? December 16, 2012

Posted by rmshepard in Uncategorized.
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The work started by the Montana Meth Project years ago has continued. The strategy: scare the crap out of potential first time users of meth so that they never touch the stuff. The latest part of that effort being widely discussed is the work of rehabs.com, an organization that is posting shocking infographics to its website showing users before and after they got hooked to the drug. The faces are morphed from average young people to ghoulish figures with scabs on their face and rotting (or even missing) teeth. Users also develop acne, lose fat in their face, and become ghostly white.

The strategy isn’t being praised by everyone, though. According to psychologist Dr. Dolores Cimini, the infographics are too over the top. As she stated, “Adolescents are egocentric and they say it’s not going to happen to me.” Cimini is likely wrong, though. Since the first Meth Project ads ran more than 10 years ago, meth use – especially among teens – has fallen significantly.

For more on the fear tactics of the Meth Project, see the following video:

Discussion Questions:

1.  Can people be shocked into doing something? If so, given an example?

2.  Are the images by rehabs.com too strong?

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