My address to CRD of Victoria BC on Tanning Bed Bylaw

Chair, vice chair, board members, thank you for hearing me today on the tanning regulations bylaw 3711, and I also wish to acknowledge the Songhees people on whose traditional territory we are today.


My name is Jeremy Arney and I live in Central Saanich.


Whilst I accept that there are some who seem to think that tanning in any form is not good, I would ask them if they also think that Vitamin D is unnecessary or are they willing to get it only in supplement form from a drug company, because there are no natural food products that have been approved by Health Canada to supply everyone’s need for Vitamin D.

I am an ugly enough old man who has been using tanning beds for over 30 years to help with SADS, I do not have skin cancer and I am told I do not look 70 years old.  I do not get sick with colds, flu or any such things as my immune system is just fine thank you,

because Vitamin D is one of the most powerful immune system builders we have available, and naturally created by a reaction from UV rays….

The Cancer Society is a bit confused about this, even though there does not appear to have been any real update in their position since 2007, according to their website. On the one hand they say that UV rays might cause skin cancer and premature aging appearance, on the other they are admitting that it is necessary for the human body to have Vitamin D because, to quote the site ‘it has proven to be effective in fighting cancer”. In fact what they are not saying is that Vitamin D is a fantastic immune builder and as such is not good for their business of being a money collector for Big Pharma.

However, I am more interested in another subject arising directly from this proposed bylaw and that is the ability of the present young generation to make choices for themselves, with or without parental help, as opposed to being directed and controlled by the state.

One young woman wrote to the local excuse for a daily paper recounting that she, along with some of her friends, had appeared at CRD hearings in support of this bylaw and I believe she was the young woman who told me at the last meeting of this board that she did not feel able to make decisions for herself. I suggest that that very decision and the actions she has already taken to speak her mind refute that, and it is an interesting way to avoid peer pressure. A powerful decision for any young person I would suggest. What I regret is that she is wanting the tanning decision to be made for her, when there are decisions that really should be being made on her behalf but are not, such as eating at fast food places like MacDonalds, where the food is of no nutritional value and has been shown to cause obesity and irrational behavior changes in both young and old wherever they have set up businesses in the world. By the same token the vaccination of Gardasil with the vague promise of cervical cancer prevention 25 years down the road of her life is not proven and not a good bet when compared with the side affects and deaths already shown to have occurred in young girls after being vaccinated.  Nor was she being protected from the recent untested, unproven H1N1 vaccination against a fake swine flu pandemic.  By surrendering her ability to choose for herself, she is allowing herself to be a guinea pig for the same pharmaceutical companies that produce Vitamin D drugs which cannot compare with the real thing. 


Come on Emily you are worth so much more than that. If you want parental control or teacher guidance for your actions that’s OK ask for it, but please do not surrender your freedoms to the state.


This is where I am concerned. 

Are we not teaching our children to make decisions for themselves any more?  Do we have to think for them now?  Driving is OK at 16 (making multiple choices per mile), but to tan or not is a choice they can’t make?  I am convinced young people like Emily can and do make choices for themselves every day, and we should be encouraging that not stopping or controlling it.

There is another woman who is, I am sure, here today who told me she would like to see no one be allowed to make any choices until they are 30, which presumably includes driving, enlisting in the armed forces, police, fire fighting or ambulance services or even what career to pursue as well as voting, smoking, drinking and not getting married until 30.  That last one might be a good thing.

To quote from her letter to the TC: “our chief medical health officer tells us indoor tanning is like sunbathing without protection at the equator”.  I gather he has never been in a tanning bed nor to the equator.


Both these women state that tanning is a known carcinogen but fail to also mention that they are free to eat French fries and drink beer which are perhaps 100 times worse, and cause a secondary effect of obesity.


One of our problems today I think is to admit that others have opinions which may differ from our own but have equal value in the scheme of things. If we are not willing to listen and learn then what message are we sending to today’s young people? They will soon be running the world and I would rather they were used to making decisions based on all the known facts and asking for help, and not just based on fear, dogma, corporate control or indifference to others’ opinions.


In conclusion I would say that the concern I have with this bylaw is that it is a red herring to hide too many of our real unaddressed health problems, and I would like to see those problems addressed with the same thoroughness and passion as this particular bylaw, which reminds me of Bill C-36 now the Canadian Consumer Product Safety Act  –  an unnecessary  and  misnamed act which only deprives Canada of her sovereignty in making laws and regulations, and Canadians of their rights, freedoms, rule of law and the ability to use the courts for protection against unwarranted invasion of their homes and privacy, whilst doing absolutely nothing new about consumer product safety.


Please, let’s not emulate a dysfunctional federal government, but instead make sensible rules with understanding and compassion which fit the peoples’ educated choices.

Thank you.

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