By: Leticia Latrice
A film created by an organization called Black Lives Black Lungs is being produced. This organization created a digital project investigating the tobacco industry’s successful targeting of the black community with menthol products.
The flavoring of any cigarette is banned by the FDA. However, adding menthol to cigarettes is not. Menthol is added to make the cigarette taste better and easier to smoke. Over the decades smoking menthol cigarettes has been strategically advertised to the African American community. Billboards, flashy advertisements, stars and athletes have all been used in the plot to influence the masses to believe that smoking menthol cigarettes is cool.
Little did the African American community know that it was a plot to capitalize on the addiction and death of black people. Statistics from the World Lung Foundation state that in 2011 tobacco was roughly the reason behind the deaths of 6 million people. And 80% of those 6 million people were low to middle income. In 2010 the top six tobacco companies’ combined profits, made 35.1 Billion dollars.
We all know someone who has smoked Newports or Kools for years. We also know many people who have died from lung or throat cancer, heart attacks and heart disease. So many studies have been done that expose the ugly truth of the deadly effects of tobacco. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cigarettes has killed more blacks than murders, car accidents, drugs, alcohol and aids combined. This statistic is horrifying and shows how smoking cigarettes is rapidly killing black people year after year.
Cigarette companies would love for a person to be addicted to cigarettes for a life time. So you can keep putting money in their pockets for decades. They want you to be a customer until death do you part. Ask yourself is your life worth a pack of cigarettes? In major cities like Chicago, Newports cost up to $10 a pack. Think of all the other useful things you can put your money towards. Like your children, financially preparing for your future or just enjoying extra luxuries in life. Quit giving tobacco millions of dollars to kill you.