In The Mix Smoking The Truth Unfiltered Essay

This essay has a total of 882 words and 5 pages.

In The Mix Smoking The Truth Unfiltered




For something that looks as if it came from your rain gutter, bidis have seen a surge in
popularity among the American youth. Beyond the chest – beating about the health risks of
bidis, traditional tobacco connoisseurs find themselves shaking their heads and wondering
why anyone would want to fire up such a ragged and tarry smoke. Why would people want to
wear unwieldy platform shoes? It’s fashion.


“I don’t know why anyone would smoke them, personally,” says Greg Jones, manager of
Creager Mercantile, a Denver – based tobacco wholesaler. “It’s probably just the way they
look.” Until recently few people knew what they were, but in recent months bidis have
made headlines. State attorneys general, including Colorado’s Ken Salazar, have urged
federal officials to restrict their importation because they have become so popular with
the underage youth.


Recently, Durango tobacco shop owner Don Hall stopped selling bidis at his store after
agents caught him in a sting operation that targeted Internet companies selling to minors.
Bidis, which minors can’t legally buy in Colorado, look nothing like traditional
American- made cigarettes. Some even come in kid – friendly flavors such as chocolate and
strawberry, a fact that health authorities find particularly vexing. The national
Campaign for Tobacco - Free Kids maintains that the flavoring is added specifically for
the American youth market.


They feature a sprinkling of bone – dry, lower grade tobacco rolled up in a green tendu
leaf, a plant related to the eucalyptus, and bound at the but end with a piece of string
that’s about the gauge of dental floss. Bidis are slightly tapered, and look sort of like
miniature versions of the “torpedo” cigar style. Fire one up, and the ash is liable to
adorn your lap like snowflakes. And since they are loosely wrapped, they are hard to keep
lit and require deeper puffing.


Nor do they qualify as cheap alternatives to regular cigarettes. The price of a pack is
about the same as the stuff peddled by big tobacco companies. Bidis range from $1.50 to
$3.50 a pack. They’re available at a range of outlets, from traditional places such as
Jerri’s Tobacco Shop to Myxed Up Creations, a Broadway shop that always carries incense,
piercing jewelry and the like. Bidis are unfiltered, and new research shows that bidi
smoke is loaded with about three times as much nicotine and carbon monoxide and five times
as much tar as smoke from regular filtered cigarettes, according to a study by the
Massachusetts Department of Public Health.
Continues for 3 more pages >>




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