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Movies aimed at youth should be tobacco free

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POSTED November 21, 2012 8:02 p.m.

Editor, Manteca Bulletin,

My name is Johnny Quesada and I am 21 years old. Like most people I am a giant movie fan. I go see movies all the time with friends and family. Lately I’ve noticed how much tobacco use has been used in movies, more importantly, children’s movies. I understand in advertising that the best audience is a young, impressionable audience that can potentially be a loyal, life-long customer of a product. But I also understand that when the product is tobacco, a harmful, addictive and disgusting product, it’s wrong.

I’ve lost my grandfather to cancer because he was a life-long smoker. I see those closest to me smoke on a regular basis, the same people I enjoy going to the movies with, and when they see young, attractive people smoking, it’s just more justification and reinforcement for their lethal habit.

Half of new young smokers in the U.S. are recruited by their exposure to smoking in movies. These 390,000 kids are nearly enough to replace every adult killed by tobacco each year and the worth of $4.1 billion in life time tobacco sales revenue and $893 million in profit (net presale value) to the major tobacco companies. We need to urge movie studios to keep kid-rated films tobacco free, so we can keep our kids tobacco free.

Johnny Quesada

Manteca

Nov. 5, 2012

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