Recently, the Gentleman Agitator has taken a break. In that time, there have been so many possible Stinky winners; it has been hard to keep up. It is so easy to get outraged these days. I try though to reserve my Stinkers for things most foul, but ones that might go a under the radar of the media and popular culture filters. Yes, foul and filters, that bring us to R.J. Reynolds latest offering in mass murder marketing, cigarette, Camel No.9.
I was listening to NPR this morning and I seethed! Their story, “Critics Fume over Marketing of 'Camel No. 9'” really got my attention. I urge you to follow the link and read the whole story or listen to it as broadcast on NPR. Here are some text quotes from the story and my comments:
“When R.J. Reynolds held a party in Florida last weekend to introduce its newest cigarette, the music was loud, the dance floor was crowded, and — if you believe the company's ads — the smoke that hung in the air was "light and luscious…”
Light and luscious eh? Sounds like an opium den might be described that way by its addicts as well.
"I like them. They're a sweeter taste, and they don't stink like regular cigarettes," said Angela Rewis, 26, who described herself as a stay-at-home mom. "And I like the pack. It's more for females, instead of carrying around a nasty, ugly pack."
Oh good Angela, they do not stink. Perhaps you could just light them in your child’s bedroom as an air freshener! Let the carcinogens waft through the air. Or if they taste sweet, maybe they could be like a candy cigarette for your child. And I know, it really sucks to carry around a nasty, ugly pack. What are those advertising agencies doing these days? Geeze! You know the pink on the No. 9 pack is like sooo cute. That is the sort of like the color of healthy lungs. And like you know, the black color of the pack, that is like the color of your lungs after years of smoking, nice gooey tar sticking to them! Oooh cool!
"Camel has traditionally been looked at as a male brand," said R.J. Reynolds spokesman Craig Fishel; he notes that only about 30 percent of Camel smokers are women. "So we saw a great business opportunity there to be able to communicate with adult, female smokers of competitive brands that this is a product they might enjoy."
Yeah Mr. P.R. Flak for Camel, only 30% are women, great. Dang, your profits must be hurting. Here is another stat for you from the U.S. Surgeon General’s report in 2001 referenced by the American Cancer Society https://www.cancer.org/docroot/PED/content/PED_10_2X_Women_and_Smoking.asp. “In March 2001, the Office of the US Surgeon General released a long-awaited, detailed report entitled "Women and Smoking," along with the following statement:
"When calling attention to public health problems, we must not misuse the word 'epidemic.' But there is no better word to describe the 600-percent increase since 1950 in women’s death rates for lung cancer, a disease primarily caused by cigarette smoking. Clearly, smoking-related disease among women is a full-blown epidemic." -- David Satcher, MD, PhD.”
Later in the NPR story..."I enjoy a good cigarette when I'm drinking and hanging out," said Terry Turner, 29, an insurance adjuster who said she planned to make Camel No. 9 menthols her regular brand. "They're very light, but yet feminine. It's very packaged — like you wouldn't mind showing it to everyone."
Yes, very packaged. In fact, I thought I would make my own ad for them. I think it shows the, complete package. I don’t think I mind showing it to everyone either. I hope Goya would not mind anyway. He gave me a little help with Britney’s gal pal, Miss Angelina Della Morte.