On Saturday, April 2nd, the Museum celebrated its first annual Grand Spring Awakening, when we come out of our winter hours, and resume our normal, full-time operations.
This year to mark the occasion, we had a program featuring three remarkable speakers: Mitchell Garabedian; Jan Schlichtmann; and Ralph Nader.
The CIPOLLONE CASE
The plaintiff in Cipollone v. Liggett Group was Rose Cipollone, who began smoking in 1942, when she was 16 years old. Shortly before she died of lung cancer in 1984 at the age of 58, her husband sued the company that manufactured the cigarettes she smoked.
In 1988, a jury in New Jersey awarded Cipollone’s husband $400,000. The jurors found that, before 1966, the company had failed to warn of the health risks of smoking its products. (After 1966, cigarette packages included a federally required health warning that smoking cigarettes may be hazardous to health, and the court in Cipollone made a pre-trial ruling that the warning labels placed on cigarettes in 1966 prevented common law claims for injuries related to smoking after that date.) The jury also found that the company’s cigarette advertisements constituted an express warranty that its cigarettes were safe, and the company had breached that warranty.
Flint Water Crisis
Flint, Mich., is under national scrutiny because of its contaminated drinking water. Various mismanagement of the city’s drinking water supply has allowed dangerous levels of lead into people’s homes, workplaces, and schools.
As Michigan Governor Rick Snyder declared a state of emergency, the Federal Emergency Management Agency issued an emergency declaration, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office and Michigan Attorney General’s Office announced they are investigating the problem, Flint residents and advocacy groups have filed lawsuits to hold the wrongdoers accountable.