An Ol’ Broad’s Ramblings

February 24, 2007

Smoke and Tax

Filed under: Opinion, taxes — olbroad @ 9:32

In letter to the editor yesterday, the writer hits on keeping kids from smoking:

Stop the young from smoking

I lost a mother, brother and aunt to pancreatic cancer — all of whom were heavy smokers.

I lost my father to pancreatic cancer, and he never smoked! Where’s the connection?

To me, this is about children, children who are told, “Don’t smoke, it’s bad for you,” yet they watch adults become addicted and struggle with what to say or do to turn the tide on this dreadful addiction.

My parents told me not to smoke, neither one of them smoked. Only one of my relatives smoked. I didn’t watch them get addicted. I smoke. Again, where’s the connection?

Recently, during a tobacco prevention presentation, children were sharing their concerns for their loved ones’ smoking and how afraid they were of losing them. At the end of the presentation, I handed out some B-Free gum. Several of the children put the gum in their pockets and asked for more. When I asked why they wanted more, they responded, “They wanted to give it to their mom, dad or grandparents to help them quit smoking.”

Perhaps if grown ups stopped trying to brain wash our kids, they wouldn’t become anti smoking nazis!  No, kids shouldn’t start smoking, but it’s not their job to tell their parents what they can, or cannot do.

Fact: I know full well I should never have started smoking. I know it’s not a good thing to do. If I had all the money I spent on cigarettes in my pocket right now, I’d be darn close to filthy rich.

Fact: I’m going to die. Whether it’s from lung cancer, or a car accident, or a terrorist attack, one of these days, I’m going to be worm food. Contrary to what many would like to believe, people just don’t live forever. We aren’t suppose to, so why not enjoy life while we’ve got it to enjoy? I happen to enjoy my smokes. When I don’t, I won’t smoke.

I see the fear and concern in the children’s eyes. I also know that children don’t want to start smoking, but 90 percent of current adult smokers started at a very young age. The proposed $1.25 cigarette tax increase per pack will help people escape the ball and chain of addiction and prevent 84,000 kids from ever picking up a cigarette.

Where did she come up with the idea of specifically 84,000 kids won’t smoke because of a ridiculous tax? If a kid is going to smoke, it doesn’t matter what the cost is, they’ll find a way. Stealing from parents, from stores, earnings from baby sitting or their afternoon job, they’ll find a way.

If Wisconsin is serious about tobacco prevention and is dedicated to creating a generation of tobacco-free kids, a $1.25 tax is not too much to ask. State legislators have the chance to help create a generation that can reject smoking and save lives, and to me, that’s priceless.

Yes, a $1.25 tax is way too much to ask. If you want to generate tax money, you don’t raise the tax so high people can’t pay it, and go elsewhere for their smokes. “Cutting off your nose to spite your face” is not a good way to create funds to put more funds in the public coffers.

I’m sure this woman is quite sincere.  Shilling for Gov. Dopey’s excessive tax plans doesn’t do her cause a bit of good.


1 Comment »

  1. […] post by olbroad and powered by Img […]

    Pingback by Tax Form » Smoke and Tax — February 24, 2007 @ 6:47

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