Photo of 18 year-old Rhonda, a Marlboro smoker who started smoking at age 12.  Rhonda is at the beach holding a message which reads, 'addiction is not as cool as you think.'

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Almost 90% of new smokers are under the age of 19. The tobacco companies want youth to believe that the smokers they see smoking each day smoke because they want to look cool. Rhonda wants you to know that they have no choice.  That they're true drug addicts. She wants you to know that being cool and being a true drug addict are two entirely different things.  Rhonda should know. She has been trying to make regular mandatory public nicotine feedings look normal since age 12.

Copyright 2005

The above photo is owned and was taken by John R. Polito on June 12, 2005. Rhonda has consented to her photo's use in association with any not-for-profit non-commercial youth smoking prevention or cessation education effort, which John R. Polito agrees to as well, so long as the photo's use is accompanied by accrediation to Link to higher resolution version.

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WhyQuit on Youth - Youth smoking prevention