In three previous national telethons, Stand Up To Cancer has raised more than a quarter of a billion dollars for cancer research. Contributions to the “War on Cancer” pledged in the fourth such telethon on September 5 would seem to be welcome. But several sponsors that were praised in the telecast appear to be doing more to promote the leading cause of cancer — cigarette smoking — than to prevent or cure cancer.
Take SIEMENS, a multinational engineering and electronics corporation that has cultivated an image as a medical equipment and health-care company in advertisements in major magazines and newspapers with headlines such as “More health care stories with happier endings.” But this self-proclaimed health company also is a leading manufacturer of cigarette-making machinery. Among SIEMENS’s customers is Philip Morris USA, maker of the best-selling cigarette brand Marlboro.
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