In Smoking, the Racial Gap Strongly Favors Blacks

Thirty-five years ago in 1977, the smoking rates for Blacks and Whites in the United States were essentially equal. That year, 36.7 percent of African Americans reported that they had smoked a cigarette over the past 30 days. The smoking rate for whites was 38.3 percent.

A new study by researchers at the University of Michigan finds that smoking rates for all races have declined significantly, but more moreso for Blacks than for Whites. In 2011, only 9.7 percent of African Americans reported smoking cigarettes over the past 30 days. For Whites, the rate was 22.2 percent.


Comments (6)

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    Great news!

  2. Chief William Bogan, USN says:

    Lets continue to take our health seriously!

  3. Ladasha Smith says:

    Why is everything so focused on race. Every article in this journal is race based. Why not focus entirely on the issue, rather than making race the statistic. If we continue to think about race as the main factor, we will never be able to continue to move forward with accepting each other for what is on the inside rather the color of our skin.

    • Taniqua rodman says:


      You need to see the big picture instead of making unsupported attacks, this ia why our people fail to advance in white amerikkka.

  4. L. C. says:

    I hate to discredit these findings, but the reality is that cigarette smoking rates have always been low for blacks. Based on recent studies there is strong indication that blacks are more likely to smoke little cigars (e.g. black and milds, swishes etc.) than cigarettes. These cigar products are worse than cigarettes. Studies suggest that it may be a reason why we observe poor health related outcome from smoking in general among blacks than whites.

    • Editor says:

      As we understand the study, the authors are not claiming African Americans smoke cigarettes more than Whites. Instead, they report that Blacks, as well as Whites, who believe they are victims of racial discrimination are more likely to smoke cigarettes than members of their own race/ethnic group that do not perceive they are victims of racial discrimination.

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