The Province - February 17, 2000
Talk About Poor Taste
It may be legal but it sure is in poor taste. Not the du Maurier product, maybe, but the fact the smug tobacco giant made it clear only smokers can enter its contest.
What's that make the rest of the population? Dog meat?
So if your lungs aren't layered with thick, icky stuff like the tar that coats roads, you're outta luck. You don't stand a chance of winning a weekend at Whistler and tix to du Maurier's ‘unforgettable’ show next month.
We doubt non-smokers care.
But these crafty promotions got us thinking about ways to reach and teach kids about the habit's harm to health.
And that reminded us of a meeting not long ago with Canadian Senator Colin Kenny, an anti-smoke crusader who shows no signs of letting up on his drive to combat tobacco addiction among the young. We're all appalled at the drinking drivers who are wiping out our youth. Well, smoke-related diseases kill 10 times more.
You may recall, Kenny's first private member's bill which established a levy on a deck of smokes was nixed on procedural grounds by the Speaker of the House of Commons.
Kenny claims he's fixed that problem – and is geared up for round two next month when a new and improved version will be introduced in the House.
The bill calls for an independent foundation, funded by an additional levy on tobacco purchases, to provide a substantial stable source of money for programs aimed at reducing tobacco consumption by teens. Kenny says the $20 million currently being spent on such projects (66 cents per capita) looks like peanuts when up against the tobacco companies' advertising mega-millions.
We're beginning to see the light.