The logic is flawless. RJReynolds' newest approach is "a grass-roots marketing campaign to associate Camel cigarettes with trendy cocktails — and encourage young people to drink." Because drinking leads to smoking. I can only assume the next phase involves an image-building promotional tie-in with Trojans.
But really: isn't all tobacco marketing "grass-roots?" It's not like the law allows these companies to pursue splashy, multi-media campaigns for a primetime audience. So their campaigns exist under the radar, starting at bars and events and growing into direct mail programs. If that seems pernicious, if that seems upsetting -- and it is for state attorneys general, public health advocates and most important Rob Reiner -- there is one alternative: allow cigarettes to advertise on TV. In a more public arena and with network pressure, wouldn't they feel obligated to tone it down? Go a little more tame, bland and ultimately forgettable?
Or am I drunk?