HOUSE JOINT MEMORIAL 4028
State of Washington 52nd Legislature 1992 Regular Session
By Representatives Heavey, Franklin, Fuhrman and Sprenkle
Read first time 01/15/92. Referred to Committee on Commerce & Labor.
TO THE HONORABLE GEORGE BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, AND TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE AND THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, AND TO THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE UNITED STATES, IN CONGRESS ASSEMBLED, AND TO THE FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION:
We, your Memorialists, the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Washington, in legislative session assembled, respectfully represent and petition as follows:
WHEREAS, Adult citizens of this state have the right to use alcohol in a responsible manner; and
WHEREAS, Alcohol is an illegal drug for persons under twenty-one years of age; and
WHEREAS, It has been estimated that over fifty thousand students in grades six through twelve can be considered heavy drinkers and over fifty percent have tried alcohol; and
WHEREAS, Almost one-half of the deaths and almost one-quarter of the disabling injuries on our highways result from accidents involving drivers under the influence of alcohol; and
WHEREAS, As a class, young people are greatly overrepresented in the number of alcohol-related collisions, making alcohol-related accidents the leading cause of death for sixteen to twenty-four year olds in the United States; and
WHEREAS, Alcohol abuse has been linked to a wide array of family and health problems, causing much pain and suffering; and
WHEREAS, The treatment of these problems raises the cost of health care for all citizens of the state; and
WHEREAS, Approximately one hundred forty-five babies are born in Washington state each year with fetal alcohol syndrome; and
WHEREAS, Fetal alcohol syndrome is the third leading cause of mental retardation in the United States; and
WHEREAS, More than one-third of the arrests in the United States each year are related to alcohol abuse, costing taxpayers one hundred fifty million dollars a year for the arrest, trial, and jail time of these people; and
WHEREAS, Advertising has a tremendous effect on the attitudes, beliefs, social behavior, and consumer behavior of citizens of all ages, especially young persons; and
WHEREAS, It is estimated that over seventy percent of high school seniors watch some television every day; and
WHEREAS, The average primary and secondary level student spends more time watching television than doing homework; and
WHEREAS, Many advertisers have taken advantage of this eager market by explicitly or implicitly purveying the message that alcohol contributes to a person's attractiveness, athletic ability, professional ability, or social status; and
WHEREAS, Advertisers have also attempted to make alcohol appealing to young people by linking alcohol to various animated characters and mascots; and
WHEREAS, Some alcohol advertisements convey a sexist message by objectifying women;
NOW, THEREFORE, Your Memorialists respectfully pray that Congress enact a law establishing a "fairness doctrine" for alcohol advertising, requiring that any federal communications commission licensee who permits the advertising of alcoholic beverages provide equal time for public service messages designed to educate the public about the problems associated with alcohol use and abuse.
BE IT RESOLVED, That copies of this Memorial be immediately transmitted to the Honorable George Bush, President of the United States, the Federal Communications Commission, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and each member of Congress from the State of Washington.