Thursday, August 12, 2004

Smokers and Tobacco Growers Rights

I subscribe to an e-mail service, through RJ Reynolds, called My Smokers Rights. This e-mail service allows me to stay on top of legislation regarding tobacco and smokers rights. I received an e-mail yesterday that was rather disturbing. Looks like the FDA is trying to take steps towards prohibition of tobacco products. Yes, I understand how bad smoking is for you and the people around you. I also know it is my right. I feel that if you are going to bring the hammer down on tobacco, then you need to do so on alcohol too. Smoking doesn't cause any traffic accidents or render people unable to make decisions. Smoking doesn't make people violent or unable to walk and talk. If the government wants to better my life and look out for my best interests, they should socialize healthcare and drive down prescription drug cost. They should look into the effects of High Fructose Corn Syrup and they should fund stem cell research. Cures for cancer are around the corner with stem cell research. That means I can get lung cancer and they could cure it.
So you can read the e-mail I received, here it is:

North Carolina smokers, and smokers across the nation, face a potential disaster that involves federal regulation of tobacco products. No other issue, short of immediate prohibition of tobacco products, would have as large an impact on your rights as a smoker.
The U.S. Senate recently passed an FDA/tobacco quota buyout plan that would cost smokers more than $12 billion over six years. What's worse, the bill gives the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) complete control over tobacco products, from farming and production to taste, price, coupons and availability. If the bill becomes law, the cost of cigarettes will increase. And with tobacco products under FDA control, all tobacco regulations will be subject to the whim of non-elected government officials.
Fortunately, the House of Representatives passed tobacco quota buyout legislation that won't increase the price of cigarettes and doesn't give the FDA control. Now, select Senate and House members must meet to draft a compromise proposal.
MySmokersRights encourages all adult smokers in North Carolina to take a moment to
e-mail Senator Elizabeth Dole today and urge her to support the House-approved tobacco buyout bill that does not include tax increases on working smokers or FDA regulation of tobacco. In your own words (remember to be polite and courteous) tell her:
Reject the Senate tobacco quota buyout bill that includes a multi-billion-dollar tax increase on hard-working smokers.
Giving control of tobacco products to the Food and Drug Administration is unwise and unacceptable.
If Congress wants to be fair to both tobacco growers and smokers, it should adopt the House version of the tobacco quota buyout bill.
To write Senator Elizabeth Dole, the address is:
Senator Elizabeth Dole725 North Main StreetSuite 404Salisbury, NC 28144-0364
To phone, the number is (704) 633-5011.
During the next few weeks, we will provide additional opportunities via e-mail for you to contact other legislators on this important issue. Please take a few minutes out of your busy schedule to also let them know how you feel about this issue.
Not a member of MySmokersRights? Join today at and let us help keep you informed about any issues that impact your rights as an adult smoker.
R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company

I also recieved the same e-mail to write to Rep. Howard Coble. Here is his info:
To write Rep. Howard Coble, the address is:
Rep. Howard Coble2102 North Elm StreetSuite BGreensboro, NC 27408-0512
To phone, the number is (336) 333-5005.

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