Up until a few days ago, candy cigarettes didn’t seem like such a big deal. My recent observations have led me to believe that candy cigarettes may not be such a good idea.
While watching my oldest son play baseball, I witnessed a group of children eating candy. One little girl in particular was holding a box of candy cigarettes. Instead of just munching these chalk-like candies, she was posing with them while talking with her friends. The edible cigarette was held between her index and middle finger on a relaxed arm. Pointing the imaginary lit end away from her body, she stood with her friends – repeating what is probably parental behavior regarding COPD in convenient rolled form. What was the name of the candy cigarettes? Target brand, of course.
The mind races (mine, at least) at the possibilities with other marketing ideas to aim at kids. Fisher Price Toys could come out with a bright colorful plastic oxygen tanks that the kid could lug around with them. Velcro chest straps could playfully minimize the difficult breathing that you get when you dance with Mr. Tobacco for decades. Baby Gap could come out with fashionable hospital-like gowns.
O.K., maybe it’s a stretch. However, I don’t see the need for candy cigarettes. Having lost loved ones to this, it’s more than annoying to see something deadly appear as a harmless activity for kids. The message is rather conflicted, don’t you think?