Kids Just Don't Get It!

Kids Just Don't Get It!

Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

08 Oct 2003, 22:24 #1

Kids Just Don't Get It!

On the surface the above statement explains why kids are smoking at such an alarming rate. Here we have a product that is deadly, so deadly in fact it has been deemed the most preventable cause of premature death in the United States. Some, who don't die from it, will often still be impaired or crippled from cigarettes. Not only is it deadly, it is expensive. Kids taking up smoking today are likely going to end up with a product that will end up costing them tens of thousands of dollars over their lifetime. But still kids take it up in record numbers today. What is the only logical explanation from this tragedy?

Again, it must be kids don't get it. But don't be too quick to interpret my meaning of this phrase. Yes there are some kids that no matter what you teach them will not listen to any amount of reason. But this is not the majority of kids taking up smoking. When I say kids don't get it, I don't mean kids lack the common sense to make a rational decision about smoking. What they don't get is the real information in a manner that helps them understand the magnitude of the danger and the power of the addiction. Without this understanding, they are not equipped with the ammunition to overcome peer pressure, as well as tobacco promotion tactics by cigarette manufacturers.

When I try to offer programs to many local schools, free of charge mind you, I often get turned down for the reason that they can't take time out of the busy education schedule required in schools today. Besides this, the school officials often feel kids already are getting the facts about smoking in health classes and DARE presentations. This is all well and good, except the message delivered in these programs is often presented quickly and truly skimming the surface of the depth of the nicotine addiction. I know when I do a school for the first time, the kids are amazed at the stories I relate about the dangers of smoking and the strength of addiction. More important than this though, it almost never fails that the health teacher comes up to me and tells me that they never understood the magnitude of the problem.

Recently, when I was speaking at a conference where representatives from many health organizations were coming to find out how to possibly help get funding from tobacco settlement monies. The DARE officers represented came up to me afterwards shocked about how dangerous smoking actually was. It seems the people being relied on to pass the message don't understand the message themselves. And the people who should be responsible to educate the kids feel that the information is already out there for all to see because these people are already teaching it!

Kids can get it if it is given to them. It's not only a financial limitation that this material is not disseminated. It is a lack of resolve and commitment by the public that allows this to happen. Parents should be demanding this information for kids. PTA groups should be screaming to increase the educational component of smoking prevention. But unfortunately, most of them don't get it either. How often a parent reaction to their child smoking is, "Well at least they are not using drugs." There is so many problems faced by kids today such as drugs, and alcohol, and violence that smoking seems minor in comparison.

But what parents and other adults to understand is that smoking is going to kill more kids than all the other problems combined. The kid has picked up an addiction that is likely going to kill them. What do I mean by likely? Well for ever thousand 20 year olds who smoke today and don't quit, 6 of them will eventually die prematurely from being murdered (violence), 12 will eventually die prematurely from accidents, and 500 will die from smoking! But at least they are not using drugs. When a parent says this or thinks this, understand, they don't get it either. They never did learn the full extent of the nicotine addiction when they were kids.

You made the comment that you would have given up your toe for the girl back when you were a kid. Think about it though, do you really think you would have given up your toe. If I was there with a chainsaw and made a promise that I would guarantee a date with the girl if you let me lop off your toe, do you think you would have taken it? Probably not, and this analogy is not as farfetched as it may sound on the surface. There are people who end up losing toes, fingers, feet, hands, legs, and arms from smoking. They are often given the choice to quit smoking or lost the limb, but they really don't have a choice. They are addicts who lost control. Kids need to understand the extent of that control before they are smoking. Not that it just smells bad, not that it makes your teeth yellow, not that it is just "bad" for you. They think lots of things are bad for them. But tobacco is in a league by itself. When more kids get this information in its full non-diluted strength, more kids will have the ammunition to say no.

Peer pressure is a real phenomenon. Just telling kids not to give into it is not enough. Give them the reason not to give into it. Give them the full unadulterated message of the deadly and addictive nature of nicotine. Give them a reason to say no and they will likely do it. Lets make sure kids do get it and I think we will see a turn around in current trends.


Originally from the string Joel's Library - Frightening Trends in Teenage Smoking
Last edited by Joel on 03 Nov 2009, 11:20, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

08 Oct 2003, 22:46 #2

Focus on helping smoking- addicted teens quit
Op/ed USA Today - October 8, 2003
By Patricia Pearson
My grandfather, a gregarious, life-loving and witty man, died before I was born as a result of smoking two packs of Lucky cigarettes a day.
By the time I was 17, there was nothing an anti-tobacco advertisement could have told me that I did not already know from that tragic family experience.

Nevertheless, I already was smoking 20 cigarettes a day.

As state legislatures across the USA slash their anti-tobacco-program funds in response to serious budget crunches, it is worth considering whether that automatically calls for protests from anti-smoking organizations, or whether it is an opportunity to reconsider how to direct resources more effectively into the teen smoking wars.

An intriguing study out this month in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine explains what I always suspected, that exhorting teens to "just say no" to cigarettes is most effective with that small group of kids who never try smoking.

The reason surprise is that nicotine is powerfully addictive. To wit, the McGill University study reports that some adolescents show symptoms of addiction to nicotine after smoking only one or two cigarettes; in particular: physical cravings. That suggests that nicotine itself is a more decisive factor in teens starting to smoke regularly than the influence of their peers.

"This is important news because it challenges the current idea that it takes kids two to three years of daily smoking to develop nicotine dependence," the study's author, Jennifer O'Loughlin, a researcher at McGill said at a Montreal news conference last month.

Vast sums of money have been spent in the past 15 years on a strategy of either shaming or frightening teenagers out of smoking, while a minuscule fraction of that amount has been allocated to actually help them quit. That needs to change, given the addictive nature of tobacco.

Oregon is the only state to provide comprehensive Medicaid insurance coverage for such essential smoking-cessation aids (news - web sites) as the anti-depressant Wellbutrin, the NicoDerm patch and addiction counseling.

Yet, consider that last July the American Legacy Foundation reported that while 65% of female smokers between ages 16 and 24 wanted to quit, only 3% succeeded for a given year. The foundation was set up with money won by the 46 state attorneys general who sued the big tobacco companies in 1998. The suits resulted in a massive court settlement that was meant to be earmarked for tobacco programs. In fact, initially many of the states used their portions of the settlement funds to pay down budget deficits and upgrade government buildings, among other projects, according to a study by the National Conference of State Legislatures. Some, however, poured cash into the coffers of ad agencies to design the anti-tobacco posters and TV and radio spots we've grown familiar with.

The American Legacy Foundation continues to maintain that anti-tobacco advertising is an essential ingredient in persuading Americans to quit smoking or not start at all. To that end, the foundation alone has plowed upward of $60 million into such media campaigns.

Likewise, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, a national lobbying group based in Washington, adamantly insists that we keep beating the drums through advertising, community-awareness initiatives and in-school workshops.

While some research has shown that these ads and other programs are effective in some states in reducing smoking or keeping people from starting at all, there are the hard-core smokers, including teens, who need more than what they're getting.

Just look at the data. One in four students in 12th grade currently smoke cigarettes on at least a weekly basis in the United States, according to this year's annual Pride Survey, a Kentucky-based firm that tracks adolescent drug use. This notwithstanding years of anti-smoking censure. Indeed, the survey marks an increase in 12th-grade smoking rates since 1987, in terms of the number of kids who report having a cigarette "in the last year."

How many of these students are going to drift into a daily habit by the time they enter college? The ones who grow addicted and have no access to Wellbutrin, nicotine-replacement therapy and addiction counseling. That's how many. It is this core group for whom ads, alone, cannot work.

The one-in-four rate noted by the Pride Survey mirrors the number of people in the adult population who smoke regularly, and that percentage has remained rock steady since 1996, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (news - web sites) in Atlanta.

Believe me, these hard-core adult and teen smokers get the point. You don't have to show them a diseased lung or someone on a ventilator 80 times in the hopes that the 81st time they will notice. I have needed no further evidence than my grandfather's cancer to understand that smoking is bad for one's health. In fact, I still smoke.
What I could have used and what teenagers today can use is practical, hands-on help that extends well beyond the tepid, hopelessly ineffectual lists of "quitting tips" that pass nowadays for smoking-cessation programs.
Put the money where the addiction is. Teenagers already know what happened to the Marlboro Man.
They may not know that a combination of pharmaceuticals, NicoDerm and group therapy can give them a more positive fate.
Patricia Pearson is a freelance writer and author living in Toronto. She's also a member of USA TODAY's board of contributors.
Copyright © 2003 USA TODAY

A wonderful article and one of the very times I've seen any journalist question funding priorities. Although Patricia clearly has not had an opportunity to study and explore the efficacy behind her NRT recommendations, she's far from alone in that regard.
One thing I've come to recognize this past year is that the leadership at many national tobacco control organizations became involved as a result of anti-smoker crusades, as they battled for clean indoor air. To them smokers are the enemy.
I belong to two other organizations where any mention of spending additional funds to help those addicted to nicotine reclaim their freedom is met with almost immediate protest. They don't have a problem with fighting to help save children from getting hooked but once addicted they seem to tend to blame the children for not listening to the health warnings.
To spend money after the fact, to many of these well intended folks, is like giving aid and comfort to the enemy. It's in large part the same reason that lung cancer research gets so little attention and funding - they see it as our own fault for getting hooked in the first place and the natural price to be paid.
We need more journalists like Patricia, willing to dig into the meat of the problem. If we continue to refuse to teach our children the truth about the power of nicotine then what moral standing do we have to intentionally deny them meaningful assistance once enslaved? John
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

23 Oct 2003, 20:09 #3

Nicotine addiction from cigarette
smoking may begin in a few days
By Dr. George Johnson - On Science

Kids get addicted to cigarettes a lot quicker than we thought. Mayo Clinic researchers report this month that children who have smoked only a few cigarettes experience the same symptoms of nicotine addiction as adults who smoke heavily.
The researchers followed more than 600 12- and 13-year-olds from seven schools in central Massachusetts for a four year period. Even kids who only smoked a few cigarettes a week became strongly addicted. "This is particularly disturbing," adds lead study author Dr. Joseph DiFranza, "given that each day, over 4,800 teens smoke their first cigarette. That's 1.7 million children annually."
The chemical nature of nicotine addiction is a tragedy but not a mystery. Scientists understand nicotine addiction quite well. The key experiment that led to our understanding was a simple one: Investigators introduced radioactively-labelled nicotine into the brain and looked to see where it went. They found that individual nicotine molecules attached themselves to a previously unknown protein on the surface of brain nerve cells!
These so-called "nicotine receptors" usually bind a natural brain chemical, acetylcholine. It was just an accident of nature that nicotine, an obscure chemical from a tobacco plant, was also able to bind to them. What then is the normal function of the nicotine receptors?
Each activity in the brain involves constant communication between nerve cells. One nerve cell communicates with another by throwing a chemical at it. The target cells have on their surface receptor proteins, each with a shape that "fits" that chemical signal and no other. Like playing catch, communicating nerve cells lob these signal chemicals back and forth.
Different brain cells carrying out different activities often use different chemical signals. The signals include chemicals such as acetylcholine, dopamine, serotonin, glutamate, glycine, and a host of others.
With all this signalling going on, the brain cannot function effectively without a way to coordinate its many activities -- to adjust a particular activity "UP" or "DOWN" relative to others. The brain does this in a direct and logical way, by adjusting the sensitivities of each of its many different kinds of receptors to their chemical signals.
The tool it uses to do this is a central coordinating receptor -- the very one to which nicotine binds. The role of this receptor is to "fine tune" the sensitivity of a wide variety of other brain receptors to their chemical signals, adjusting particular kinds of receptors up or down to slow some activities, speed others, and in this way to achieve overall coordination of the brain's activities.
So how does nicotine cause chemical addiction? When neurobiologists compare the brain nerve cells of smokers to those of nonsmokers, they find that nicotine binds this coordinating receptor, stimulating it. By overriding the normal system used by the brain to coordinate its many activities, nicotine alters the pattern of release by nerve cells of many neurotransmitters, including acetylcholine, dopamine, serotonin, and many others -- like turning up the setting on a TV remote that controls many television sets. As a result, changes in level of activity occur in a wide variety of nerve pathways within the brain. These changes are responsible for the profound effect smoking has on the brain's activities.
Addiction occurs because the nervous system responds piecemeal to nicotine's fiddling with its central control. The brain attempts to "turn the volume back down" by readjusting the sensitivities of each kind of receptor individually, eventually restoring an appropriate balance of activity. Unfortunately, in many children these readjustments apparently occur after only a few cigarettes.
Now what happens if you stop smoking? Everything is out of whack! The newly coordinated system requires nicotine to achieve an appropriate balance of nerve pathway activities. You are addicted to nicotine.
So what do you do, if you are addicted to smoking cigarettes and you want to stop? The CDC reported in July that 8 million people tried to quit smoking in 1998, the latest data available. About half the people attempting to quit smoking use patches containing nicotine to help them, and another quarter chew nicotine gum. Providing nicotine removes the craving for cigarettes -- so long as you keep using the patch or gum. Actually, using nicotine patches or gum simply substitutes one (admittedly less dangerous) nicotine source for another. You are still addicted.
If you are going to quit smoking, there is no way to avoid the necessity of eliminating the drug to which you are addicted, nicotine. Hard as it is to hear the bad news, there is no easy way out. The only way to quit is to quit. Every teen should consider carefully the take-home lesson, which is that addiction to nicotine is not a matter of will power, but chemistry. "These kids will take about 20 years on average to break this addiction," DiFranza warns. How much easier not to smoke the first cigarette.
© Txtwriter Inc. All rights reserved.

Although I think Dr. Johnson's data may have been a bit off in estimating of those using gradual nicotine weaning devices he's cleary on the mark in pointing out that in the end all successful quitters there's only one way to break free and that's by "eliminating the drug to which you are addicted, nicotine."

Dr. Johnson's article also provides an interesting explanation of what addiction to nicotine really means. Recent studies are moving beyond explaining nicotine dependency in terms of just dopamine manipulation and are studying a host of our brain neurotransmitters and neurochemicals that this amazing substance appears to have the ability to manipulate.

Nicotine dependency recovery truly is an amazing discovery adventure in just how deeply nicotine impacted not only our health and physicial abilities but the well-being of our minds.

This journey leads to a well earned rest after years of endless chemical cycling. It leads to simple recognitions such as appreciating that nicotine is no longer feeding us via adrenaline induced releases of stored fats and sugars and that we might just need to learn to eat like normal folks again - including adding natural fruits like bananas and apples back into our diet, and even some dairy products, as they wonderful natural sources of basic nutrients which are key to the creation of many important neurochemicals.

Let the healing continue! Just one rule, no nicotine today. John
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

17 Nov 2003, 00:27 #4

There is a post I just put into the thread Joel's Library - Why I don't speak at more sites or events that seems to make bringing up this thread appropriate.
Last edited by Joel on 03 Nov 2009, 11:23, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

28 Nov 2003, 22:10 #5

There are some people out there who are trying to make sure that kids do get it. See Lung Cancer, Stage 4
Last edited by Joel on 03 Nov 2009, 11:25, edited 1 time in total.
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17 Jan 2004, 21:58 #6

We have a number of younger members joining up at Freedom. I sometimes wonder if our older members think that if they were young now and had all of the information and insight about smoking that young people have available now if they then think that they would never have taken up smoking. While it is true that there is a greater understanding to the dangers of smoking today it is also true that many young people are not getting that information in a credible or effective manner--not really understanding the concept of the addiction until it is too late and they are addicted. I thought this string would shed a little insight on this problem.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

18 Jan 2004, 03:24 #7

This is a very interesting topic. I am 22 now and I started smoking when I was 14 years old, a freshman in high school.
Now this was not a situation where I took as cigarette as an experiment thinking it'd be just that once or only once in a while. I had the full, deliberate intention of becoming a full-fledged smoker. I started smoking with the full intention of becoming addicted to cigarettes.
Want to hear something really disturbing? I was thrilled to the bone the first time I had a physical cigarette craving. (We called them "nic-fits".) I remember: I was sitting in class, and I felt a peculiar tickle in my throat and an indescribably subtle sort of clamping feeling in my brain. What's that feeling? Suddenly I realized that smoking a cigarette would make that feeling go away. Hooray! I was a real smoker! I was addicted!

It just absolutely turns my stomach to write about this now. I hadn't thought about that moment in years; maybe not since it happened. Why did I think in this way? What kind of incredibly screwed-up moral landscape must I have had to not only deliberately become a drug addict but to feel genuinely happy when they addiction really started taking hold?

It's a good question and I think that to understand the answer it's important to think back to our teenaged years. Experiences vary widely; however, most people's adolescence is characterized by sullenness, recalcitrance, rapidly shifting self-images, and an intense desire to win favor with one's peers and most pertinently to thwart adult authority figures. I do not think that there is anything inherently bad about this state of mind--sure it's tough and in the end very self-defeating, but it's a necessary step in the blossoming into sentience (sp?) for most people.

I say that the desire to flout authority is "most pertinent" for a reason: I think that this is responsible for a lot of kids starting smoking. I know it was a major, major factor in my personal decision.
I was a very sullen, depressed teen girl, cursed with a prohibitively large vocabulary and very few social skills. I was angry. I felt cheated. By whom, and out of what? Who knows. But I had the vague yet firmly held conviction that my parents and especially the teachers and administrators at my school were deeply responsible for this dissatisfaction. This is not totally unreasonable; the faculty at my school were in fact largely ignorant and reprehensibly tyrannical and seemed to enjoy making things difficult for teens. So what could I do? The opposite of whatever they wanted me to do, that's what!!!! "Don't drink. Don't smoke. Don't do drugs." You can bet that I did all of these things as much as I could. There were other reasons--it was fun, it gave me sort of a common ground with a lot of my peers--but I remember vividly feeling that the best part of it all was being a "bad kid".

It's important to understand the dynamics of this sort of thing, particularly if you're going to try and talk to teenagers about substance use and abuse. Most health educators make the tremendous mistake of trying to convince kids that it's "not cool" to do these things. "It's not cool. It won't make you popular. It won't make you feel good." This is a disastrous tack to take. What these people need to understand is that in the eyes of many if not most teens, whatever they endorse, in almost any category, will be immediately branded as dorky and undesirable. That's just how it works. Besides, telling people that these things will not make them feel good is a bald-faced lie. They most certainly will, at first. I loved smoking when I was young. So having told one obvious lie, everything else that the educator has said also becomes suspect--including legitimate information about how awful these things are.

So the upshot of this long-winded diatribe is that I think that if one wants to make a difference with teens, and actually convince a large number of them that they should not start smoking cigarettes, one must do so with straight unadulterated information. No opinions about what is or is not cool or fun. No "shoulds" and "shouldn'ts". Just: smoking makes you die. Horribly and painfully. And in the meantime it makes you a pathetic addict with an incredibly low quality of life. Pictures like the ones on whyquit.com. I am certain that this is the approach that Joel takes when he talks to high-schoolers and that it is infinitely more successful than the transparent propaganda that I was offered in high school.

I don't blame anyone for guiding me towards the decision to smoke. That was a decision that I and I alone made. Yet I feel that I might not have felt this perverse desire to start had not the adults around me been so incredibly clueless about how to educate teens in such a way that they will actually listen.
Teenagers aren't stupid but they are naive and misguided. It's a shame that so many of them turn to smoking as a way to express all the bitterness and fresh young cynicism that they feel during this confusing and painful time of emotional and social upheaval. I hope greatly that this trend is dealt with; I was foresighted enough to quit but a lot of those kids who started smoking when I did are still smoking and will smoke until it kills them. Thoughtfulness and a little strategic psychology on the part of educators goes a long, long way. Like I said I'll bet Joel does a great job with these teens.

--Erica
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Joined: 16 Jan 2003, 08:00

18 Jan 2004, 03:52 #8

Erica,

Here's a post for you: Scare tactics

So the upshot of this long-winded diatribe is that I think that if one wants to make a difference with teens, and actually convince a large number of them that they should not start smoking cigarettes, one must do so with straight unadulterated information. No opinions about what is or is not cool or fun. No "shoulds" and "shouldn'ts". Just: smoking makes you die. Horribly and painfully. And in the meantime it makes you a pathetic addict with an incredibly low quality of life.

Well said!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Never take another puff.

Sal
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

18 Jan 2004, 04:03 #9

Great thread. Same point about discredited info that I was making Thanks Sal! --Erica

And thanks also, so very much, for helping me yesterday. I'm feeling better now.
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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

13 Feb 2004, 03:07 #10

This seemed like a good article to attach here: Smokeless Tobacco - Gruen Von Behrens' Missing Jaw. Again, most of the time kids don't get it but at times there are people delivering the messages that are needed to help increase the odds that some kids will find out even before they start using the importance of avoiding all sources of nicotine, and, as far as for inhaling burning tobacco products, of knowing early on to never take another puff.
Joel
Last edited by Joel on 03 Nov 2009, 11:27, edited 2 times in total.
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18 Feb 2004, 10:38 #11

Light-up time leaves some Italians fuming

By Suzanne Bush
SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES
January 19, 2004
CAPENA, Italy - Yesterday was light-up time in Capena, a medieval town where everybody smokes on St. Anthony's Day. Nobody remembers why, but nearly everybody does it - even children as young as 2 years old.

For years, the event has gone unnoticed by public-health advocates, who just this month succeeded in getting the Italian government to order bars and restaurants to ban smoking or to allow it only in well-ventilated smoking areas.

nbsp; Hundreds gathered under gray skies to light cigarettes from the trunk of an olive tree set ablaze in the town square.

One mother, who gave her name only as Rosalba, said she has been participating in the festival for 11 years and has taken photos of her children posing with cigarettes since they were 1. Her eldest, Giulia, is 9.

"They don't smoke properly," Rosalba said, chuckling. "Then again, Giulia did just try inhaling and started choking. ... It's a lovely thing. I'm not worried about them taking up smoking. It's only for one day, and they know it's bad for them."

Rosalba's friend, Katia, encouraged her son, Augustino, to take his first puff, but the 2-year-old seemed unenthusiastic.

Although the youngest children were accompanied by parents, many older children smoked all day without supervision.

"I like smoking," said 10-year-old Tancredi. "I help out with Mass, then I come here, and my parents think it's OK because it's only one day a year."

The festival of St. Anthony usually is celebrated across Italy with the traditional blessing of animals to bring prosperity in the year ahead. Capena's unusual custom began centuries ago with the smoking of rosemary.

Some remain faithful to that habit, but the majority now opt for cigarettes instead.

The tradition is awkward for Mayor Riccardo Benigni, who also is the town doctor.

"It's not a good thing. This I can say as a doctor and a nonsmoker. It's not that I like this new tradition. Of course, it's not a good example for anyone, but the origins were completely different."

Mr. Benigni says he has tried to discourage children from taking part and, for the first time this year, there was a sign suggesting parents give their children sweets instead. But only a few of the smaller children chose candy cigarettes over the coffin nails.

Raffaele Luise of the Italian Cancer League was appalled by the practice.

"I'm convinced that when children associate the souvenir of their first cigarette with having fun in a happy situation with the whole village and all their mates, these memories can lead a kid to repeat that behavior."

Most Italian adults seem oblivious to the effects of smoking on their children. Despite a 30-year-old ban, it's not unusual to see Italians smoking in schools and hospitals.
Copyright © 2004 News World Communications, Inc.

Thanks to Jill for bringing this story to our attention
Last edited by John (Gold) on 03 Nov 2009, 11:34, edited 1 time in total.
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18 Feb 2004, 22:11 #12

Thanks John for preserving this article at Freedom. It really brought a chill to my spine when I read the words "Nobody remembers why, but nearly everybody does it - even children as young as 2 years old." This is just wrong on so many levels. As an Italian myself I know there are many traditions that no one remembers why we do them, but this is the first time I've heard about one that could enslave a toddler. I have nephews aged 2 and 3 and I know that my brother would never allow them to puff, tradition or not. This is such a sad article.

Jill
Kicking Butt for 16+ months.
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02 Mar 2004, 22:17 #13

Middle schoolers see:
This is your brain on nicotine
By Bill Lindelof -- Bee Staff Writer
Published 2:15 a.m. PST Tuesday, March 2, 2004
For about 45 minutes, tobacco industry whistle-blower Victor DeNoble on Monday held his audience in rapt attention.
Three hundred or so eighth-graders crowded onto bleachers to hear a story of how DeNoble helped develop a "safer" cigarette.

Quietly and politely, the Rio Linda Junior High School students listened to the research scientist.

Then he brought out the monkey brain.

And after that a human brain - to a decidedly mixed reaction.

Small screams of horror erupted as DeNoble shook solution from the dripping brain of a cadaver. One boy stood and thrust his fist into the air. Some girls hid their faces. Others leaned forward to get a better look.

"It was gross," said 13-year-old Temre Barrett.

DeNoble is presenting his talk, "Inside the Dark Side," at 25 assemblies in 13 schools throughout the Sacramento area this week and next.

He used the props because they were examples of how nicotine had altered the brains. The monkey brain came from a nicotine-addicted lab monkey and the human brain from a longtime smoker.

"Nicotine goes from your lungs, to your heart, to your brain in seven seconds," he told the students.

His appearance was sponsored by Kaiser Permanente. The medical group's "Don't Buy the Lie" anti-smoking campaign dovetails with DeNoble's life story as a key witness in government hearings into the tobacco industry.

DeNoble, a former research scientist for Philip Morris, testified before Congress in 1994. His testimony was part of the evidence that led to a multibillion-dollar settlement.

DeNoble, an experimental psychologist, and his colleague worked in a secret laboratory in Virginia from 1980 to 1984. They experimented on rats to find out how nicotine affected the brain.

Their work led to a chemical that had the same effect as nicotine on the brain without causing heart problems.

But the company shut down the lab. DeNoble and his colleague were fired, he said, and he was prevented from releasing any information because he had signed a confidentiality agreement.

DeNoble said the tobacco company knew nicotine was addictive and that it was his job to find a way to keep smokers addicted but without heart problems.

After decades of denying that nicotine was addictive, Philip Morris didn't want to expose itself to lawsuits, he said.

The day he was fired, DeNoble took with him the nicotine research documents. However, most of those documents later would be stolen.

His wife, however, had retained some of the documents - which he later leaked to the FBI. DeNoble was released from his secrecy agreement with tobacco companies to testify before Congress in 1994.

He also testified before the Food and Drug Administration in 1995 and 1996 and former Vice President Al Gore's Tobacco Settlement Committee in 1997.

DeNoble is a "strong kick-off for the 'Don't Buy the Lie' anti-tobacco program," said Cathy Edwards, a Kaiser Permanente health educator.

The free program includes an anti-smoking billboard-design contest and materials used in more than 50 Sacramento and Placer county middle schools.

Diana Elmer, the Grant district's substance abuse prevention specialist, said there is a great need at the middle school level for more tobacco use prevention.

DeNoble tells his story without the usual "just say no" admonition. He ends with the words "take personal responsibility for your actions" and "please make good decisions."

His delivery is devoid of browbeating. Dr. Rick Baker, chief of Kaiser's health education, has seen DeNoble speak several times.

"What I like about his talks - besides the story about the cigarettes and the "don't buy the lie" message - is that he tries to tell students how to make the right decision," Baker said. "He doesn't tell them what the right decision is. He doesn't tell them, 'Don't smoke.' They can make a decision based on the facts he presents."

Eighth-grader Barrett also thought "it was pretty cool" that DeNoble let her decide that she will never smoke a cigarette.

"Mostly when people talk to us about that stuff, they lecture us and say, 'Don't smoke, don't smoke,' " she said. "I don't think I would even try it. It's pretty nasty."
Link to story:
Copyright © The Sacramento Bee
About the Writer

The Bee's Bill Lindelof can be reached at (916) 321-1079 or [url=mailto:blindelof@sacbee.com]blindelof@sacbee.com[/url].
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05 Apr 2004, 05:35 #14

Ex-tobacco researcher weighs
in on perils of smoking
By GAIL KOCH - [url=mailto:gkoch@thestarpress.com]gkoch@thestarpress.com[/url]
Sunday, April 4, 2004 - The Star Press, Muncie, Indiana, USA
MUNCIE - Former Philip Morris researcher Victor DeNoble did more than tell Muncie and Delaware County middle school students about the dangers of smoking.

On Friday, he showed them.

DeNoble spoke to students at Delta, Wilson and Daleville middle schools about the dangerous effects of nicotine on the body, using facts from his research as a scientist to get his point across.

"For nicotine to go from the lung to the heart to the brain, it takes less than seven seconds," DeNoble said to the students.

He told the kids about his work in the early 1980s as a researcher for the nation's largest cigarette manufacturer, describing tests he performed on rats and monkeys that proved nicotine was an addictive drug that could alter the brain.

Talking about his test monkey, Sarah, DeNoble said he tested brain cells from deep within her brain following her death to find that nicotine had chemically altered her brain cells.

"Wanna see it?" he asked the crowd as he pulled the monkey's brain from a container.

The move was met by a "whoa" that echoed across the auditorium as students scrambled to get a closer look.

DeNoble said he told executives numerous times about his experiments before he was fired for his controversial research in 1984.

A contract he signed with the company prevented him from testifying about his findings until 1994, when seven of the top tobacco industry executives testified before Congress about the addictive drug that led to a $710 billion lawsuit against Philip Morris.

He finished his talk by telling students they were still young enough and smart enough not to start smoking.

"You have to accept the responsibility of making that choice and of who you want to be," he said.
Copyright 2004 The Star Press
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21 Apr 2004, 21:36 #15

Every month I do a single session seminar at a local health department which is set up for kids who are caught smoking and sentenced by the local court system. More often than not the kids who are sentenced in come to the program seeing it as a punishment and what will likely be a waste of time--another effort by another adult trying to infringe on their freedom of choice to smoke. While this may be the attitude of most of the kids, there are a few who leave the session recognizing that the session was valuable and are in fact grateful that they had the chance to learn about smoking and quitting.

Yesterday's session had two kids sentenced to the program--a fourteen year old boy and a fourteen year old girl. The girl came in with the same attitude as most. She wasn't ever going to be addicted because she doesn't smoke much and besides, she didn't see cigarettes as being that dangerous anyway. I suspect by the time she left she may have at least recognized the dangers really posed by smoking, although I couldn't tell if she really understood or believed the addictive power of nicotine.

The boy was another story. He already understood the addiction--better than most his age. The reason he understood it is because he was already smoking over two packs per day and has tried to quit countless times. He was happy he was sentenced to the program and said he would have come in even if he was not forced to if he had known it existed as an option.

I have high hopes for this boy--you could already see that smoking was physically limiting his endurance and was controlling him in numerous ways. It is tragic enough when you see adults under this kind of grip but to see a fourteen year old who cannot really meet the physical and social demands of adolescence because of smoking is indeed a sad thing to witness.

We also had six adults come to the session. Two had quit within the last few weeks and four others were coming in to learn how to quit now. I really didn't have as much time as I would have liked to deal with the adult quitting issues and hope that they find their way here to Freedom to read and learn materials that I could not get covered.

Bill should get a kick out of this. One of the men who had quit over two weeks ago came in with a printed out version of our Never Take Another Puff pdf book. He brought it in so that I could autograph it. This was a first time request--I found it very entertaining.

I am going to kick up a few posts today addressing things that I could not get covered yesterday in the event any of the participants come here to read. The bottom line message I would give to them is the same message that I give to all who read here too, that quitting smoking is fully within any person's capability and the way to stay free once you have quit is simply to stick to the commitment you made the day you decided to never take another puff!

Joel
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19 Jun 2004, 00:12 #16

Exploring children's conceptions of smoking addiction

Health Educ Res. 2004 June 15 [Epub ahead of print]

Wang C, Henley N, Donovan RJ.

School of Marketing, Tourism.eisure, Edith Cowan University, Perth, WA 6027, Australia.

Tobacco addiction is a major health problem for both adults and young people--between 20 and 60% of adolescents are dependent on nicotine and more than two-thirds who attempt to quit experience withdrawal symptoms. Yet, anti-smoking efforts targeted at children emphasize primary prevention and ignore addiction education, which is generally considered relevant only to adult smoking and cessation efforts.
This study reports children's concepts of smoking and addiction from interviews with 32 Western Australian boys and girls, aged 9-10 years, all non-smokers. Results suggest children's concepts of smoking addiction may influence attitudes toward smoking trials. Children who thought addiction happened immediately were committed to never smoke at all. Others who thought addiction happened after several cigarettes expressed intentions to experiment. These children believed they could avoid addiction by smoking less than the number of cigarettes that caused addiction.
Children who defined addiction as 'liking' or 'enjoying the taste of cigarettes' believed they could avoid being 'hooked' as long as they managed to avoid enjoying the experience. Recent findings that children can get 'hooked' within a few days of smoking highlight the importance of addiction strategies targeted at children, particularly in relation to influencing intentions to experiment with smoking.

PMID: 15199004 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Last edited by John (Gold) on 05 Nov 2009, 00:48, edited 1 time in total.
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23 Aug 2004, 21:30 #17

From: AnitaMCK (Original Message) Sent: 8/23/2004 7:57 AM
I saw two of my nieces yesterday, they have never seen me a nonsmoker, since I relapsed 22 years ago before my latest quit. I got very upset when one admitted to taking a puff here and there, and the other one, she's a never smoker, but she was upset that all of her friends have started smoking.
The tobacco industry is losing customers by so many smokers dying, and by us ex-smokers finally quitting. It is so disturbing to hear about all these teenagers and early 20s smoking. I told them to tell their friends on how it had me in prison for 8 years, then 6 months of freedom before a relapse and another 22 1/2 years. I hope they'll listen.

AnitaMCK - Free and Healing for One Month, Fifteen Days, 10 Hours and 31 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 2 Days and 8 Hours, by avoiding the use of 682 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $136.57.
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30 Aug 2004, 03:53 #18

In Memory of Rob: Stage 4, lung cancer interview and I have some sad news

Rob helped to make sure that some kids did get it. I hope he will continue to do so everytime this post gets brought up in the future.
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23 Sep 2004, 19:09 #19

This issue came up last night in a seminar I was doing for dentists. One of them noted just how many of his young patients were smokers and I could see he was wondering how with all that is known about smoking today how could such a trend be happening. He is right that people in the medical profession often know a lot about the harmful effects of smoking but unfortunately the knowledge is not always passed along to the people who need it the most. Also, while people here the phrase that nicotine is addictive most people grossly underestimate just how addictive this product actually is.
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24 Sep 2004, 00:05 #20


The U.S. Government is now in the process of trying a case against the tobacco industry. Although debating the merits of either sides arguments is contrary to Our Courtesies the trial itself will generate a wealth of factual information.

The complaint filed by the Department of Justice outlined a number of factual allegations associated with youth dependency that would benefit youth around the world to read, understand and appreciate.

From childhood dreams of experiencing the adventures of life on the range as a cowboy to dreams of traveling to distant lands such as Egypt and riding a camel, the cowboy and camel are bait that if swollowed will bite for a lifetime.

Marketing images of pretty girls and handsome guys, fun, big smiles, and groups getting together to share great times, it's all bait inviting you and your friends to quickly become addicted to one of the most captivating chemicals on earth. In truth, addiction to smoking nicotine will rob you of your complexion, your sweet breath, your lung capacity and endurance to exercise vigerously and enjoy life, your freedom, and a roughly a 50% chance of losing more than 5,000 days of life.

Below are the facts that the U.S. Department of Justice is today attempting to prove in open court. The numbers are references to each factual allegation in its complaint.

The United States of America vs. the U.S. Tobacco Industry
Complaint - Filed: February 28, 2001
G. Targeting the Youth Market
92. For most of this century, it has been illegal to sell cigarettes to children in most states. Currently, it is illegal to sell cigarettes to children under the age of 18 in all states.

93. Defendants used the Tobacco Institute to shield the Cigarette Companies' advertising to minors. In 1964, defendants publicized a voluntary "cigarette advertising code" that had been agreed to by all the major cigarette manufacturers. The code prohibited advertising directed at young people or the use of celebrities or sports figures in advertisements for cigarettes. Over the next thirty years, defendants, primarily through publications of the Tobacco Institute and in congressional testimony, reiterated their pledge to avoid advertising directed at young people, while at the same time individual companies were aggressively marketing cigarettes to young people through advertising.

94. Despite the illegality of sales to children, and despite denying that they do so, the Cigarette Companies have engaged in a campaign to market cigarettes to children. The Cigarette Companies have long known that recruiting new smokers when they are teenagers ensures a stream of profits well into the future because these new smokers will become addicted and continue to smoke for many years, and the young smokers are "replacements" for older smokers who either reduce or cease smoking or die.

95. Recognizing the profits to be had from this illegal market, the Cigarette Companies researched how to target their marketing at children and actively marketed cigarettes to children. As a result of this research -- including research conducted in the 1950's into the smoking habits of 12-year-olds -- defendants have long known that young people tend to begin smoking for reasons unrelated to the presence of nicotine in cigarette smoke, but then become confirmed, long-term smokers because they become addicted to nicotine. Defendants are further aware that although beginning smokers realize that there are some health risks associated with long-term smoking, beginning smokers almost universally fail to appreciate the addictive nature of cigarette smoking, and therefore fail to appreciate the risk that, by engaging in smoking while they are adolescents, they will become long-term smokers because of the development of an addiction to nicotine. Moreover, the earlier a person begins to smoke, the more likely it is that he or she will develop a smoking related disease.

96. The Cigarette Companies have aggressively targeted their advertising campaigns to children. Cigarette Companies' advertising glamorizes smoking and its content is intended to entice young people to smoke, for example, as a rite of passage into adulthood or as a status symbol. Among the techniques used by the Cigarette Companies to attract underage smokers were advertising in stores near high schools, promoting brands heavily during spring and summer breaks, giving cigarettes away at places where young people are likely to be present in large numbers, paying motion picture producers for product placement in motion pictures designed to attract large youth audiences, placing advertisements in magazines commonly read by teenagers, and sponsoring sporting events and other activities likely to appeal to teenagers.

97. Dining the 1970's and 1980's, Reynolds' substantial market research indicated that Philip Morris, and particularly its Marlboro brand, was dominating the youth market. Reynolds recognized that, in order to maintain its profits over the long term, it was critically important to attract its own cadre of teen-age smokers. Internal Reynolds documents specifically cited the need to recruit youths as "replacement smokers." Thus, Reynolds developed the Joe Camel campaign - based on a cartoon character - to appeal to the youngest potential smokers. In 1988, Reynolds began a massive dissemination of products such as matchbooks, signs, clothing, mugs and drink can holders advertising Camel cigarettes. The advertising was effective in attracting adolescents and, as a result of the campaign, the number of teenage smokers who smoked Camel cigarettes rose dramatically.

98. Despite the overwhelming evidence that they have deliberately sought to target young people for the sale of cigarettes, defendants have denied such activities in false and misleading communications to the public, to legislative and regulatory bodies, and in judicial proceedings. For example, in 1981, Brown & Williamson denied that it geared its advertising to young people following criticism in a press report. Others have followed suit: Reynolds ran a series of advertisements in 1984 claiming that "We don't advertise to children."

99. To avoid full disclosure of its practices regarding Joe Camel, in 1991, while the Federal Trade Commission was investigating Reynolds' practices of advertising and marketing to children, Reynolds instructed its advertising agency to destroy documents in the advertising agency's possession related to the Joe Camel campaign.

100. The Cigarette Companies have long maintained that their expenditures on advertising and promotion - more than $68 billion between 1954 and 1997-was directed solely at persuading current smokers to switch brands, not to attracting new smokers and not to attract children. These statements were false and misleading, and were intended to ensure that they could continue to entice young people to smoke and become addicted by defeating potential efforts by parents and governmental entities to stop such marketing efforts.

101. In July 1969, the Chairman of the Tobacco Institute, Joseph F. Cullman, III, testified before a Senate Commerce subcommittee: "It is the intention of the cigarette manufacturers to avoid advertising directed to young persons... to avoid advertising which represents that cigarette smoking is essential to social prominence, success, or sexual attraction; and to refrain from depicting smokers engaged in sports or other activities requiring stamina or conditioning beyond those required in normal recreation."

102. In 1983, the Tobacco Institute published a pamphlet entitled "Voluntary Initiatives of a Responsible Industiy." The pamphlet noted that "in 1964, the industry adopted a cigarette advertising code prohibiting advertising, marketing and sampling directed at young people." The pamphlet made the claim that "all companies continue to observe the principles of this code."

103. The Cigarette Companies actively targeted their marketing to children with full knowledge that sales to children were illegal, that children would not appreciate the dangers of the product or its addictiveness, that most of the children who began to smoke would become addicted, and that a significant percentage would develop smoking-related diseases or suffer premature death as a result. They denied doing so with full knowledge that such denials were false and misleading.
U.S. Department of Justice Source Link:
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24 Sep 2004, 01:30 #21

Great message.

So much has happened in the last week since the death of my mother. My uncle (brother to my long deceased father) called with his condolences. It was the first call I'd received from him in forty-some years - - since my father died (airplane crash). Both he and my father had been medical school grads - Harvard and Yale, and were very competitive with one another.

My uncle really didn't know what to say to me so I emailed him and he wrote a letter back. The letter went on for several pages about the successes in his family - world renouned for this, that, the other, etc., etc. Art. Medicine. Music, you name it.

When one of my sisters and I discussed the letter, we realized that we had been brought up to aspire to nothing. We never even suspected we would work for a living as adults. Not that we aren't good people. Not that we aren't making a difference, but certainly not reaching anything close to our potentials.

What's the point? The point is that the parenting makes so much difference. The life style choices made by the parents pass on to the children. Smoking parents get smoking children. Violent parents yield violent kids. And on and on. Parents need to be aware of the number of generations they are affecting as they make their life style choices. Alcoholism. Smoking. Esteem. Aspirations. Health. Following the rules. Spirituality. And so on.

Like everything else, the word needs to be out there and in faces. It is important.
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08 Dec 2004, 21:57 #22

Thanks Joel. This kids smoking stuff is so real to me now, everytime I visit my nieces. They do not smoke, but a lot of their friends do now. I was there Thanksgiving, and I had a thankful prayer before dinner that I had finally quit. But one of the friends was there, in her 20s, taking cigarette breaks outside. I was thankful it wasn't me, but sorry for her.


AnitaMCK - Free and Healing for Four Months, Thirty Days, 9 Hours and 58 Minutes, while extending my life expectancy 7 Days and 22 Hours, by avoiding the use of 2286 nicotine delivery devices that would have cost me $460.12.
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20 Jan 2005, 21:30 #23

I got a call last week that they boy in the story below was still off smoking and was assisting in a project to help other kids his age from ever taking it up. I often leave these court sentenced seminars thinking like I wasted my time. Every now and then though an incident like this makes it seem worth the effort.
From: Joel Sent: 4/21/2004 8:36 AM
Every month I do a single session seminar at a local health department which is set up for kids who are caught smoking and sentenced by the local court system. More often than not the kids who are sentenced in come to the program seeing it as a punishment and what will likely be a waste of time--another effort by another adult trying to infringe on their freedom of choice to smoke. While this may be the attitude of most of the kids, there are a few who leave the session recognizing that the session was valuable and are in fact grateful that they had the chance to learn about smoking and quitting.

Yesterday's session had two kids sentenced to the program--a fourteen year old boy and a fourteen year old girl. The girl came in with the same attitude as most. She wasn't ever going to be addicted because she doesn't smoke much and besides, she didn't see cigarettes as being that dangerous anyway. I suspect by the time she left she may have at least recognized the dangers really posed by smoking, although I couldn't tell if she really understood or believed the addictive power of nicotine.

The boy was another story. He already understood the addiction--better than most his age. The reason he understood it is because he was already smoking over two packs per day and has tried to quit countless times. He was happy he was sentenced to the program and said he would have come in even if he was not forced to if he had known it existed as an option.

I have high hopes for this boy--you could already see that smoking was physically limiting his endurance and was controlling him in numerous ways. It is tragic enough when you see adults under this kind of grip but to see a fourteen year old who cannot really meet the physical and social demands of adolescence because of smoking is indeed a sad thing to witness.

We also had six adults come to the session. Two had quit within the last few weeks and four others were coming in to learn how to quit now. I really didn't have as much time as I would have liked to deal with the adult quitting issues and hope that they find their way here to Freedom to read and learn materials that I could not get covered.

Bill should get a kick out of this. One of the men who had quit over two weeks ago came in with a printed out version of our Never Take Another Puff pdf book. He brought it in so that I could autograph it. This was a first time request--I found it very entertaining.

I am going to kick up a few posts today addressing things that I could not get covered yesterday in the event any of the participants come here to read. The bottom line message I would give to them is the same message that I give to all who read here too, that quitting smoking is fully within any person's capability and the way to stay free once you have quit is simply to stick to the commitment you made the day you decided to never take another puff!

Joel

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Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

20 Mar 2005, 22:04 #24

Sometimes the kids parents don't get it either.

"Thank goodness it's only cigarette smoking!"
Last edited by Joel on 19 Aug 2010, 21:00, edited 1 time in total.
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29 Apr 2005, 00:37 #25

.
A systematic review of school-based smoking prevention trials with long-term follow-up.
Journal of Adolescent Health. 2005 March;36(3):pages 162-169

Wiehe SE, Garrison MM, Christakis DA, Ebel BE, Rivara FP.

Child Health Services Research, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN, USA. [url=mailto:swiehe@iupui.edu]swiehe@iupui.edu[/url]


BACKGROUND: Several systematic reviews of school-based smoking prevention trials have shown short-term decreases in smoking prevalence but have not examined long-term follow-up evaluation. The purpose of this study was to conduct a systematic review of rigorously evaluated interventions for school-based smoking prevention with long- term follow-up data.

METHODS: We searched online bibliographic databases and reference lists from review articles and selected studies. We included all school-based, randomized, controlled trials of smoking prevention with follow-up evaluation to age 18 or 12th grade and at least 1 year after intervention ended, and that had smoking prevalence as a primary outcome. The primary outcome was current smoking prevalence (defined as at least 1 cigarette in the past month).

RESULTS: The abstracts or full-text articles of 177 relevant studies were examined, of which 8 met the selection criteria. The 8 articles included studies differing in intervention intensity, presence of booster sessions, follow-up periods, and attrition rates. Only one study showed decreased smoking prevalence in the intervention group.

CONCLUSIONS: Few studies have evaluated the long-term impact of school-based smoking prevention programs rigorously. Among the 8 programs that have follow-up data to age 18 or 12th grade, we found little to no evidence of long-term effectiveness.

PMID: 15737770
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