Never Joke About Stuff Where Regulators Might Overhear You


Unregulated cancer shining in the sky.

I hope that no would-be health nanny, city council member, or congresscritter read the intemperate musings (meant to be a "joke" I'm sure) of American Council on Science and Health associate director Jeff Stier today about tanning. As the ASCH Dispatch notes:

Tanning Salons Get Burned

According to today's New York Post exposé on indoor tanning, salon employees are not properly warning customers that tanning increases their risk of cancer, nor are they collecting signed parental permission forms from everyone under 18, as mandated by New York State law.

ACSH's Jeff Stier got into thinking about the Post's article after he spotted an ad for NYC indoor tanning salon City Sun on his way to work this morning. "A Great Source of Vitamin D," the ad boasts.

"Is there a qualitative difference between the risk of cancer from UV exposure in a tanning bed versus the sun?" Stier wonders.

This question underscores the complexity of regulating indoor tanning salons because "if they are required to issue warnings about the health risks of UV-ray exposure, then shouldn't we have the same warning labels on city parks and beaches?" asks Stier. "Teens wouldn't spend all day in a tanning bed, but they could easily spend all day at the beach without receiving any information on health risks. If they're used differently, but are equally dangerous, perhaps the city should institute beach warning labels in order to regulate tanning in a more fair and balanced manner."

The humor-impaired FDA, or CSPI, or even worse Mayor Bloomberg might read this! Forget mere warning labels! Park benches will be ripped out and picnic blankets and beach towels confiscated as "tanning paraphrenalia." Mr. Stier, for the love of humanity, please be quiet!

NEXT: Why No One Is Trying to Kill Fannie and Freddie

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  1. The lack of vitamin D in our lives is killing us more than tanning.

    1. Only if you don’t count shriveled up zombies as dead.

  2. And do they warn us about the cosmic radiation hazard on commercial aircraft?
    [John Belushi voice] Nooooo! It’s “TERRORISM”!!

  3. According to today’s New York Post expos? on indoor tanning, salon employees are not properly warning customers that tanning increases their risk of cancer increased taxation.

    1. I actually heard a tanning salon ad on the radio the other day saying, “we promise not to pass the new taxes on to our customers”.

  4. These beaches must be closed for the sake of the children. BP is doing God’s work!

    1. … in some of the toughest beaches in America.

  5. “if they are required to issue warnings about the health risks of UV-ray exposure, then shouldn’t we have the same warning labels on city parks and beaches the sun?”

    I can think of a whole cast of clowns I’d volunteer to go apply the label.

  6. A good friend of mine opened a tanning salon in Queens when we were 21. The under-18-need-a-parent’s-consent law worked as a great way to ask barely legal girls for their IDs, so we’d know which ones were high school jail bait, and which ones were college freshmen.

    He now owns a small porn empire. Christ how I hate my decisions sometimes.

    1. Great idea! It really sucks when you think you’re banging some underage high school babe only to find out later she’s really a sophomore in college!

    2. On a related topic, its seems that, based on videos available around the internet that Ive only heard about, that approximately 103% of all tanning salons have hidden video cameras. Is this accurate?

      1. And those 103% ruin it for all the others.

        1. 5/4 of Americans have trouble with fractions.

  7. Tanning Salon Employee: Let me get this straight. You want to put your baby into a tanning bed.

    Mac: That’s correct.

    Tanning Salon Employee: I’m sorry, that’s against the law.

    Mac: Look pal, we are well aware of the law, ok? We don’t want to jam you up here, we just want to put him in there for a couple of minutes.

    Dennis Reynolds: Just to get a base…

    Mac: Just to get a base.

  8. Don’t tell Obama, or NASA will spend trillions putting a giant warning label on the sun.

    1. Typical overreaction by conservatives.

      By the way… TEH EXTERNAAAAALLLITIIEEESSS!!!1!!!!!!!!1!

      1. Oh, never mind, Al Gore beat him to it.

  9. Who do I get to sue for failure to properly warn, next time I get a sunburn?

    1. Well, I’d sue Florida. The Sunshine State, you know.

      1. Isn’t the Department of Warning Labels ultimately to blame?

  10. There are lawyers reading this right now trying to figure out how they can turn this into a lawsuit; against the sun. We are so far from rational thought informing our consumer laws, no amount of carping will help.

    1. I think tearing off Helios’ head and lugging it around Olympus was a good start, but we can do more.

      1. Fool! Didn’t you see the warning label? “Don’t drive sun cart without head”.

  11. Ron, I’d just like to extend kudos on the alt-text. It is pithy and clever, and enriches the experience of reading this blog. You are making significant progress.

    1. Ya, not bad at all.

  12. That wacky Oliver Stone is at it again!…..ortrayed-c

    1. I hate the Army! Fine. I hate the FBI and the CIA! Super! I hate Geroge Bush! Terrific! I hate Jews! Cickets chirping.

      1. Crickets damn it!

  13. You don’t need warning labels on the beach, if you require everyone to wear haz-mat suits.

      1. “As reported in the June issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Saadi and colleagues at the United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain, studied vitamin D levels in 90 women who were breastfeeding and 88 women who had never given birth. Many dressed to cover their whole bodies, including their hands and faces, while outside of their homes.

        Only two of the women, one in each group, were not vitamin D deficient at study.”

        They were promptly stoned to death, it having been proven that at least some small portion of their skin had been exposed to daylight.

    1. Nah, burqas should be sufficient. You can’t deny that the Iranian government has some good ideas.

      1. I read once that vitamin D levels are low in Orthodox Jews on account of the modest clothes they wear. When you think about it, a tanning salon provides a vital health service to people who don’t show much skin outdoors.

  14. Finally a sin tax (you know that’s where this is headed) this pale Aryan can get behind!

  15. Remember when Monty Burns blocked out the sun in Springfield (on The Simpsons)? Obama can probably get the plans; increase employment (building the shields) and decrease skin cancer (lowering health care costs) and lower or eliminate the deficit (money saved and/or money not spent). I’m sure it would qualify as stimulus.

  16. I figure that California’s Proposition 65 at least requires businesses to put warning signs on their doors. These signs should make customers who were leaving their establishment aware of the danger of contracting cancer from walking around outside.

  17. Good! The tax on Big Tan needs to be a lot higher! Teh chilrens!!!1!!

  18. The government has a list of “healthy” things and “unhealthy” things. What claims are forbidden and what claims are required depend much more on the thing in question than on its actual effects. A couple weeks ago I scanned the FTC’s guidelines for advertizing health foods to children. No fat milk and low fat milk are exempted from these requirements, but whole milk is not. So, a carton of low fat milk can say “Calcium helps build bones” without much worry, but a carton of whole milk must have precise wording from a legal template to claim that “Calcuim helps build bones”. I fully expect nursing bras to start coming with labels in a few years that inform infants about the risk of getting heart disease from milk fat.

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