Whatever the Skin Color, Inside Are Black Lungs

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the National Latino Council on Alcohol and Tobacco Prevention, and Floridians for Youth Tobacco Education warn that the tobacco industry is increasingly targeting Latino children. Not only do Latino communities have relatively low smoking rates - making them "ripe for an industry seeking to boost sagging sales" - but Spanish-language marketing often "goes under the radar of the Federal Trade Commission." The advocacy groups pointed to R.J. Reynolds' "Kool be true" campaign, which recently ran an eight-page color ad in Latina magazine with pictures of musicians and the line, "It's about pursuing your ambitions and staying connected to your roots." The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids wants data to be collected on tobacco ads targeting different ethnicities. An RJR spokesperson called their cigarettes "multicultural," saying, "Do we want adult Hispanics to smoke our brand? Yeah. Just like we want African-Americans and whites to smoke our brands."