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Miss Misanthropist

Eloquent Egalitarian

#StopProfiling TRUTH Commercial Propaganda

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Perhaps people are well aware of these commercials run by the TRUTH campaign which is supposed to get kids and adults to quit smoking or whatever. There is a bunch of research to explain that stop smoking ads can make people want to smoke more and are basically ineffective. This article talks about what makes an anti-smoking PSA successful and what doesn't. There was also a huge study about how the D.A.R.E program increased the chances of kids doing drugs. Which brings me to the very specific #StopProfiling TRUTH campaign and everything that is completely wrong with it. Clearly, I am not in the minority thinking this because the comments are closed on the youtube version of the commercial and the like to dislike ratio shows people hate for it. 

The PSA is only about 40 seconds long but it instantly implies big tobacco is only after minorities and they are on purpose targeting low-income neighborhoods and schools. Except even when googling the exact headline of the article they show in their own PSA I cannot find the article. It seems to be attributed back to their own website (Truthisms?) but the headline searched alone brings up nothing. I'm not saying it's fake, but I'm also saying if this was a real big article or thing that happened, the results should at least bring up their own website to show me the information. The headline only appears in a split second of the video while a woman with an attitude rambles about how all of this is profiling.

Except, despite this, when I can find the article they seem to be citing, it was only in one state. Not nationally. So Big Tobacco fought this in the supreme court to the right to do this in one state and it was still overturned. Now, I know that the supreme court doesn't always do the right thing but at the same time, it's just advertising cigarettes. You also have to consider what I already said about anti-smoking PSAs and how the majority of the time they are not effective anyway. As someone who is a smoker (and actively trying to quit) when I watch these anti-smoking PSAs, I only want to smoke more and I am literally in the process of attempting to quit. All they do is piss me off at this point. Mostly because of the fact that they use unrealistic scare tactics and only worse case scenario situations in an attempt to shock the smoker into putting down a cigarette. At least here in America. I've seen some Australian and European anti-smoking PSAs that scared the actual crap out of me but I would wager that they are far too graphic to show constantly on American TV. However, after seeing them, only once, I became far more proactive in my attempt to quit than any other American PSA to quit smoking. 

If we take it a step further lets consider logically why all these corner stores and whatever would be in low income neighborhoods. It really comes down to, where is the cheapest property to rent? Low income neighborhoods. What is guaranteed to sell? Cigarettes and liquor. Who lives in low income neighborhoods, well usually it's minorities or at least there is a high percentage of them but this doesn't discount the fact that white people live there too. Except at the end of the commercial, this one, they specifically only show minorities. The woman at the end is questionable in race but could possibly be hispanic. 

So the entire PSA is ridiculous, has somewhat faulty (or misleading statistics) and clearly seems to try to be saying that only black people/minorities are harmed by this type of thing, but the same shit doesn't exist in upstanding neighborhoods, that you can't find cigarette ads anywhere else, and that this is happening nationwide. With how quick the PSA takes to air and how offputting the spokeswoman is, I'm not even half surprised at the like/dislike ratio bar and the fact that most of the crap she throws at you in that 40 seconds is easily disputable to anyone with a logical mind or more than 10 IQ points. 

I don't mind PSAs that draw dangers to the effects of smoking. I don't mind PSAs aimed at getting people to quit or trying to steer young kids away from ever picking up the habit in the first place. I do mind the alarmist and completely false tactics of the majority of the PSAs. Between this one and the stupid one where the kids have a USB port in their mouth (as if that makes any sense) I think it's about time they revamped their tactic if they want it to be far more alarming. Maybe take a tip from Australia or Europe because holy crap did those PSAs really shake some terror into me in about 30 seconds. The American ones are laughable and now apparently targeting weak minded SJWs hoping that they'll see racism in the whole thing and use that as justification to quit smoking?