Brighton High freshman Reyna Joint said some of her friends smoke not just to fit in but also because they are subconsciously attracted to tobacco displays at convenience stores.
“They put flavors and colors in it, like chocolate,” Joint said. “What kid doesn’t like chocolate? They really are addictive. They have grape, chocolate and lemon — and every kind.”
Joint was one of 250 youths who marched to the State House yesterday for the annual Kick Butts Day.
Organized in part by the 84 Movement — named for the alleged 84 percent of Massachusetts youths that don’t smoke — this year’s Kick Butts Day focused on tobacco companies' alleged underhanded tactics used to target youth, including marketing cheap, youth friendly “other tobacco products,” such as candy flavored dissolvable tobacco.
“These tobacco products are sold separately, not as a packet of cigarettes, and are usually less than a dollar,” said Hye Won Lee of Back Bay-based Health Resources in Action. “Their packaging is attractive to young people. They are colorful, they are flavored.”
“I’m trying to help them by doing this march,” Joint said of her friends who smoke. “It’s just bad for your health.”