Dealing with Anti-Smoker Activists

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This article is part of the Tobacco portal on Sourcewatch funded from 2006 - 2009 by the American Legacy Foundation.

Dealing with Anti-Smoking Activists

This 1989 report from the R.J. Reynolds document collection discusses how to deal with public health advocates who are discouraging tobacco use. It discusses the advocates' motivation, how they are able to sway public opinion, and how to neutralize them. Tactics proposed include diverting advocates' attention away from attacking tobacco companies to defending themselves, "preemptively neutralizing anti-smoking organizations' activities by exposing their careless use of facts," "encouraging investigative reporters to delve into the financial interests of anti-smoking organizations and their key personnel," and introducing a ballot initiative that would prohibit political lobbying by tax-exempt organizations. The document states,

The Tobacco Institute strategy of broadening issues and forming coalitions of allies has been effective in countering some anti-smoking activities, but it is primarily a defensive measure that focuses on the symptoms of industry issues and not the source. A more proactive,aggressive posture is indicated if the industry is to counter anti-smoking activists long term.

Date 19891000
Bates 507692534/2536
Collection RJ Reynolds
Pages 3