... Rely on Big Tobacco to stop marketing to children... ... Or, we can rely on Hollywood to remove smoking from movies targeting children... ... Or we can take control and educate our children regarding the insidious and manipulative tobacco advertising included in the majority of G-Rated, PG-Rated, and PG13-Rated movies.
Tobacco Companies have to get creative since the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement established limitations on tobacco advertising targeting children, there has been an alarming increase in the amount of smoking in G-Rated, PG-Rated, and PG13-Rated films and now TV Shows!
And here's the kicker: in a survey of adolescents who smoke, 52% cite the depiction of tobacco use in the movies as the primary reason that they tried their first cigarette!
The Quit Doc Research and Education Foundation has developed SmokeScreeners, an outreach program designed to educate youth, parents, and schools on this important topic. Part of this program is to encourage families, including students, to rate films based on their smoking content. This will create an enormous ratings database that can be shared, allowing interested parents and schools to pick and choose what films and DVDs their children view, or at least discuss the depiction of tobacco in realistic terms.
As parents, we cannot ignore the problem, because that promotes the false sense in our children that smoking is a normal behavior, not a chronic drug addiction. We need to work towards cleaning up the films that are marketed to children; short of that, we need to discuss the issue openly and honestly with young people so that they understand how they are being targeted and manipulated by the tobacco industry.
Click hereto read more about the Impact of Smoking On Screen.