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Candy Cigarettes of Shame

Updated on June 17, 2012
Bubble Gum "Crayons"
Bubble Gum "Crayons" | Source

Back in the good old days, and by that I mean a whopping 20 years or so ago, there was this awesome product called “candy cigarettes.” There were two kinds – the nasty hard candy ones that you had to actually suck on a bit because they were so hard and crumbly and nasty, and they looked like crinkled up paper. And then there were the ones that were bubble gum in paper wrappers. The bubble gum was coated in some sort of white powder to keep it from sticking to the paper.

They rocked. You could puff on them a few times, and the white powder would “smoke” out the end, at least until the paper had gotten wet or the powder had run out. Then you could chew the bubble gum until the plastic fruit flavor was gone and it was just plastic flavor.

But times have changed. It is no longer acceptable for children to pretend to smoke cigarettes. We have had to move beyond that.

Now we have candy crayons.

Yes, I’m serious. Candy crayons. Because since we can no longer teach children that it’s okay to make believe, it’s perfectly okay to teach them that it’s okay for them to chew on and eat crayons.

Obviously, the minute I saw them, I had to buy them, bring them home, and chew on them. And, amazingly enough, they taste just like the gum-type of candy cigarettes! Maybe because they are the exact same things, just branded differently.

I don’t smoke. I don’t encourage smoking. “Smoking” candy never made me to smoke a cigarette. Watching other people “smoke” candy never encouraged me to smoke a cigarette.

Do we really think we have to protect our children to this extent now? Do we think that they will never play with a “candy crayon” like it’s a cigarette? Aren’t we skipping the real problem – cigarette companies that market to children and portray smoking as cool? Is changing a cigarette to a crayon really going to change that much?

Perhaps we need to consider the underlying problem and not just go around making superficial changes in our worlds. Albert Einstein once said, “The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.” So let’s change our thinking and not just our product names.


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    • JohnGreasyGamer profile image

      John Roberts 5 years ago from South Yorkshire, England

      I think it's ridiculous how people go nuts about candy cigarettes. It's not as if children are going to learn instantly how to use a lighter and roll up. I'm 19 and I can barely get a match to flame, let alone flick a lighter on. But candy crayons? Well, crayons are not only harmful to health and are much more likely to be chewed than cigarettes, but they could easily be mistaken and can instantly give someone a toxic reaction. It's not big nor clever.

      Great Hub, voted up, useful and interesting.

    • thewritingowl profile image

      Mary Kelly Godley 5 years ago from Ireland

      I remember the candy cigarettes too. My husband and I were talking about them lately and saying remember when you could buy them? I don't think we have the crayons here in Ireland though but I could be wrong I must look for them next time I am in a sweet shop or maybe ask my daughter later she is the sweet expert in our house. A nice article to remind me of my childhood.