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SHARING HARD TRUTH ON CIGARETTES

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SHARING HARD TRUTH ON CIGARETTES

Students recognize the negative effects of smoking.

Students recognize the negative effects of smoking.

Mansoor Esfandieyar

Students recognize the negative effects of smoking.

Mansoor Esfandieyar

Mansoor Esfandieyar

Students recognize the negative effects of smoking.

Alexis Wood, Reporter

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Although smoking is still an issue among American teens, since 2000, smoking rates among teens has declined by 17 percent with the growth of awareness campaigns.

One of the top organizations for smoking prevention is called TRUTH, an organization that draws attention to misshapen tobacco companies. The campaign has increasingly been gaining recognition because of its recent endorsement by celebrities such as the singer Logic and many Internet influences with large followings such as Rachel Levin, Gabbie Hanna, Ryan Higa, and Christian Delgrosso. Together, these celebrities and TRUTH spread a powerful message.

“Big tobacco [companies] know their product is harmful and they still don’t care,” a tobacco industry executive stated for The Facts Now.

Every year, 443,000 people die from smoking related deaths, which is more than any deaths due to murders, car accidents, and alcohol or drug use combined. Additionally, 1.15 million smokers have cancer just from smoking.

“I know some teens in this generation smoke to be cool, but there are other things to do to be cool than smoking,” said teacher Suzanne Stout.

Even if someone is not physically putting a cigarette to their mouth, they can still be exposed to the harmful effects of cigarettes through secondhand smoking. Roughly 53,800 people die yearly just from second-hand smoking alone, showing how cigarettes not only affect individuals, but communities as a whole. 

TRUTH aids in alleviating these issues, as it serves as a judgement-free zone to help people of all ages make a change.

“It’s about finding turbo-charging new fun ways to to do what no generation has ever done before – end smoking,” TRUTH has stated.

Many students know that smoking is bad and agree that they want to stop but need the resources and support in order to do so. This is why promotion of these programs is important: many teenagers do not even know that there are outlets to receive help. 

“Well I know they potentially had a bad side effect but [I thought that] in moderation, they’re alright. I got involved because I wanted to try one and I kind of liked the feeling, but I didn’t know how people could get addicted,” said an anonymous student. 

TRUTH has started a petition to ban menthol cigarettes. Check out the website and support the cause by joining the conversation to end smoking.

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