Chewing Tobacco in the MLB: Rat Out Your Favorite Player Today?
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As part of the new collective bargaining agreement, severe restrictions have been placed upon when and where a player, manager, etc. can use tobacco products in and around the ballpark. A refresher of the new terms, via the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (by way of Hardball Talk):
Under the agreement that MLB and the Major League Baseball Players Association announced in November, big-league players, managers and coaches will no longer be able to carry a tobacco tin or package in their uniforms or on their bodies at games, or any time that fans are in the ballpark. They will be prohibited from using smokeless tobacco during televised interviews, at autograph signings and other events where they meet fans, or at team-sponsored appearances. Violators are subject to discipline.
The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids argues that the “new tobacco restrictions will help change attitudes toward smokeless tobacco use by limiting the powerful imagery of big-league players using these addictive and deadly products” and I suppose the organization is somewhat correct in that conclusion. But if the new policies weren’t sufficient enough to help curb the dreaded tobacco epidemic among baseball players, there has also been a policy implemented where a Kid who is Campaigning to be Tobacco-Free (or anyone else for that matter) who catches a big leaguer or manager or whomever in the act of violating these policies can narc them out courtesy of an online form where a Good Anti-Tobacco Samaritan can report the alleged violation, including uploading documentary evidence.
Enforcement of these restrictions is essential, and we urge team managers and personnel, and league officials, to rigorously enforce them. To encourage fans to play a role and support compliance, we are asking them to report violations to the Knock Tobacco Out of the Park Coalition.
Sounds grand. But remember, kids: snitches get stitches. Probably not in this case, but a tattletale is a tattletale.