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present tension » Blog Archive » NYC Declares War on Smoking Mulattoes

NYC Declares War on Smoking Mulattoes


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No doubt about it, cigarette smoking is a disgusting habit—right up there with sex, nose-picking, and eating at McDonalds. But people persist, and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is determined to give some of them a good whack upside the head.

renaldoThe Department’s main target is the mass of mulattoes and mestizoes from the Caribbean region. Last year they made a celebrity of one Ronaldo Martinez, a Puerto Rican who claims to have lost his voice box to cancer, supposedly brought on by cigarette smoking. His tale is doubtful, short on specifics. He claims to have lost his larynx at 39, but he looks about fifteen years older, while throat and laryngeal cancers seldom occur before age 45.

stumpyhandsThis season’s poster child is a mulatta who calls herself Marie and according to the NY Times is in her late 50s. All over town, on posters and subway car cards, she holds out her stumpy hands to you, claiming (in Spanish and English) that cigarette smoking caused her to have many amputations.

The image is shocking and grotesque, but really no worse than back issues of National Geographic and Holiday, wherein old crones of the New Guinea highlands were said to have their fingers amputated as “funeral gifts.” That’s just the way savages are. They have their little customs, and we should not be quick to judge them. Nor should we buy the nonsense that smoking cigarettes will make your fingers fall off. According to the Times, “Marie” has Buergger’s Disease, a rare circulatory ailment.

americankidsThe big mystery here is why the Department of Health (etc.) has singled out Spanish-speaking mulattoes and mestizoes for this extra-special treatment. Surely they don’t smoke any more than the rest of the population. Why are there no campaigns depicting domestic non-ethnic cigarette smokers? Wholesome, corn-fed, all-American Anglo-Saxon types, those 20- and 30-somethings who huddle in tavern doorways from 6pm to 2am every night. Are the bureaucrats scared of these fuming masses of hipsters, gays, and investment-banking analysts? That’s a possibility, though it’s more likely that they can’t imagine how to show off healthy young American smokers and and not have it look like a cigarette ad.

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2 Responses to 'NYC Declares War on Smoking Mulattoes'


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    Sallie
    Says:

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    They also seem to baulk at depicting East Asians, who are far more likely to smoke than any other group!


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    Monika Shaw
    Says:

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    There are just too many of these mongrels in New York. Time to clean up New York. Vy don’t you Clean Up Amerika?