Monday, July 9, 2012
Don't Smoke, Please?
Knowing I teach Advertising/Marketing, a friend emailed me a link to images of vintage cigarette ads.
I did a few ads for a cigarette company in my time (shoot me), and I experimented with smoking in college (shoot me again), but these old ads smack of . . . um, uh . . .
Babies as endorsers?
Doctors/Nurses encouraging smoking?
Santa Claus puffing and huffing?
Women becoming more attractive through cigarettes?
We've come a long way. Today, ad claims are regulated and cigarette advertising is banned in most countries, including the Philippines. Many buildings now prohibit smoking and in many offices, there are limited areas for smokers.
Our own Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has gone into an aggressive anti-smoking campaign. It recently unveiled a mobile smoking cessation clinic: a converted bus deployed in many areas to counsel and suggest lifestyle change to smokers.
At the launching of this bus, a survivor of throat cancer gave a moving testimony about how he lost his voice to smoking.
I have grieved over a dozen close friends who died of lung cancer in the past five years. Four of them were non-smokers, but they were in the company of heavy smokers in their home or place of work. That's why I am thankful that many forms of anti-smoking crusades have sprouted today.
And yet, the death toll and economic losses from cigarette remain alarming. Ten Filipinos die every hour from illnesses caused by smoking, while the country loses nearly P500 billion annually from healthcare costs and productivity losses, according to an anti-tobacco group.
Fortunately, cigarette advertising has evolved through the years, and these powerful ads today may yet save a friend's life. Grief, without grace, is a bottomless pit.
May we remember the Scriptures' admonition for us to keep our bodies free of toxins (tar and nicotine are but two of these) that snuff out our precious God-given lives.
“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NIV)
Don't smoke, please?
Photo credits: thechive.com