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Children and Cigarettes

Teens in the 1950s didn't know risks of smoking

December 30, 2010

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JEFF JACOBY’S column attacking the jury decision in the case against Lorillard Inc., for marketing tobacco to children, fails on its own terms.

Jacoby neglected to remember that at the time tobacco executives were still claiming that tobacco was a safe product.

Even granting Jacoby’s position that 13-year-olds should not be protected from foolish decisions, it would not have been clear to a 13-year-old in the 1950s that choosing to smoke was a foolish decision.

Fred Graf
Concord, N.H.