You won't see the word "lights" on cigarette packs much longer. Today that word along with "mild" and the phrase "low tar" are being phased out because of the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act signed into law one year ago.
The American Lung Association is excited saying this is "an opportunity for the 70-percent of smokers wuo want to quit to finally end their addiction to this deadly product."
As a health-conscious non-smoker, that would be great... but as a skeptic, I doubt anywhere near 70-percent of smokers are going to quit anytime soon.
The idea is the "light" label gave the impression the cigarettes were some how safer than regular cigarettes. I talked to some people buying cigarettes at a convenience store near downtown this morning and a couple of them told me they indeed thought the light ones weren't as bad for you. A couple other people say they smoke the lights for the flavor, not because they think they're less unhealthy.
A pack of Marlboro lights had a label wrapped around the top saying something like, "Light cigarettes are not safer." However, that small-print warning wasn't good enough for the FDA so we're not going to see it much longer. The cigarettes will still exist in what Marlboro calls its "gold pack." It just can't say "light" anymore.
Other brands are making similar changes.
Mark Schnyder is a reporter at KMOV. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.