I'm sure you've all see those ads on TV about teenage smoking by the truth
campaign. Their ads are very hard hitting and in your face. I had no issue with the truth
campaign until they started dabbling in the anti-vaping realm. Now I agree kids under 18 should not have access to electronic cigarettes but I also think "truth" should stick to cigarettes. Let's take a look at the truth
campaign shall we?
First thing's first, let's talk money. In 1998 the 4 largest tobacco manufacturers reached a settlement with 46 states, Washington D.C., and a few territories, to pay HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS of dollars to those states in increments over a certain amount of years. This settlement was dubbed the MSA or Master Settlement Agreement
. It was also decided that a portion of this money should be put towards an anti-smoking campaign targeted towards youth smoking. The American Legacy Foundation was created to begin this campaign. They started by adopting an anti-smoking campaign from the state of Florida and turned it into the truth
campaign that you are familiar with today.
The "truth" campaign has mainly focused on cigarettes until recently. Once e-cigarettes gained popularity the truth
campaign decided to test the anti-vaping waters with articles like this
. Take a minute and read that article. I was actually on board with them until they made this quote, "the CEO of a top e-cig brand said flavored products were “essential to vapers’ satisfaction.” Of course, that was ten months--TEN. MONTHS.--after the same CEO said other e-cig manufacturers used flavorings “to attract children.” Funny how that happens, amirite?".
So off to Google I went and tried to find out if this was true. I honestly couldn't find anything supporting this statement. And with their ads directly calling out major tobacco companies, why wouldn't you name this mystery CEO?
Like every other entity that starts with good intentions there is always some bad to go with that good. It started out "small" with a few million dollars
getting misappropriated for computer equipment from 1999 to 2007 when it was first brought to light. Not really their fault but it bears mentioning that no charges were filed by the US Attorney's office. Then we get into salaries, which seem to be exorbitantly high
for the standard for non-profits. In the highlighted article it even went so far as to say they laid out a cool $1 million to get their CEO a new house. In the immortal words of pitchman Billy Mays, "But wait, There's more!" It seems that the American Legacy Foundation is getting a little hypocritical as it chugs along. They are pulling grants
from entities that use money from Big Tobacco for research while asking Big Tobacco for more money themselves. Funny how that works.
Now you may ask why I brought all this up. Well to be honest, I wrote this article with a bit of an agenda. I'm hoping to open people's eyes to the fact that you shouldn't believe everything you see or hear no matter who it comes from. Do your own research folks. Make your own informed decisions.