Ad 98

Publication(s): 
State Legislatures
Date of first publication: 
2014-02-01T00:00:00
Headline: 
Why do 11 states spend $200 million a year to push smoking at kids?
Text: 
Why do 11 states spend $200 million a year to push smoking at kids? The U.S. Surgeon General has concluded that smoking in movies causes kids to smoke. Yet states still subsidize film and TV projects that serve the tobacco industry’s marketing interests. Between 2008 and 2012, eleven states [see box] produced 93 percent of all top-grossing, US-made movies with smoking. In this same timespan, large-scale studies indicate that movies with smoking recruited 750,000 new U.S. smokers ages 12-17. Nearly a quarter-million of these kids will ultimately die from tobacco-induced diseases, with their tobacco-related medical costs reaching $12 billion. What’s the answer? States already deny public subsidies to certain kinds of media content, from porn to political advertising. Making future film and TV productions with tobacco imagery ineligible, as the U.S. CDC recommends, will resolve a costly and deadly public policy conflict. Today, states invest too little in tobacco prevention, then spend millions more to subsidize movies that effectively promote tobacco. The tobacco industry has a long history of paying to push smoking in movies. State tax-payers shouldn’t pay for it now. From 2008 to 2012, eleven states dominated production of top-grossing U.S. movies. Half of their movies included smoking. Seven of these states spent more on subsidies for movies that promote smoking than they invest in their tobacco prevention programs. Eleven states: California, Connecticut, Georgia, Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania Seven states: Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania
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