To The Editor:
My name is Rachel LeVea. I am 17 years old and I am a 12th grade student at G.Ray Bodley High School.
Nearly 10 percent of Americans in my age range are already smokers.
Furthermore, 5.6 million Americans under age 18 will die early due to a smoking-related illness.
On Kick Butts Day, I will declare that I will not be included in either of those statistics.
The tobacco industry spends a lot of money to encourage me to smoke: nearly $9 billion per year.
I will not be a replacement for the 1,200 smokers they lose every day due to quitting or tobacco-related illnesses.
Smoking will not get in the way of my goal to become a social worker and it shouldn’t get in the way of my peers achieving their dreams.
I would like to take this opportunity to ask you to join me in choosing not to replace a former smoker.
Kick Butts Day is Wednesday, March 15.
Share your support with a smoke-free selfie with the hash-tag #Ikickbutts, or get involved at a local Kick Butts Day event by contacting Tobacco Free Network of CNY at [email protected]