Tobacco sales

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mommytoMR.FACE's picture
Joined: 04/10/09
Posts: 781
Tobacco sales


"Bloomberg said raising the legal purchase age from 18 to 21 will help prevent young people from experimenting with tobacco at the age when they are most likely to become addicted." Do you agree with him?

NYC Bans Tobacco Sales to Anyone Under Age 21 - ABC News

Mayor Michael Bloomberg signed landmark legislation Tuesday banning the sale of tobacco products to anyone under the age of 21, making New York the first large city or state in the country to prohibit sales to young adults.

During a brief ceremony at City Hall, Bloomberg said raising the legal purchase age from 18 to 21 will help prevent young people from experimenting with tobacco at the age when they are most likely to become addicted. City health officials say 80 percent of smokers start before age 21.

The mayor, a former smoker, also signed legislation setting a minimum price for all cigarettes sold in the city: $10.50 per pack. The same new law bans retailers from offering coupons, 2-for-1 specials, or other discounts.

In signing the bills, Bloomberg turned away criticism that the measures would be economically harmful to thousands of city convenience stores and possibly lead to job losses.

"This is an issue of whether we are going to kill people," Bloomberg said. People who raise the economic argument, he said, "really ought to look in the mirror and be ashamed."

The ban does have limitations. People under age 21 can still possess tobacco legally, they just can't buy it. Underage smokers will still be able to steal cigarettes from their parents, bum them from friends, stock up during trips beyond city limits or buy them from the black-market dealers common in many neighborhoods.

Young smokers puffing away outside the main library at New York University on Tuesday ridiculed the law as an infringement on personal freedoms and questioned whether it would really lead to reduced smoking rates.

"I think Bloomberg has just exponentially increased the fake ID industry in New York," said Jakob Sacksofsky-Bereck, age 19.

"It's obviously going to make life more complicated, said fellow student Josh Kundert-Gibbs, also 19. "We are going to have to buy in bulk."

Both said, though, that they regretted ever having started smoking in the first place.

City Health Commissioner Thomas Farley said the idea is to make it more inconvenient for young people to start smoking regularly, especially young teens who now have easy access to cigarettes through slightly older peers.

"Right now, an 18-year-old can buy for a 16-year-old," he said. Once the law takes effect, in 180 days, Farley said, that 16-year-old would "have to find someone in college or out in the workforce."

The city estimated that there are 27,000 New Yorkers ages 18 to 20 who smoke.

Tobacco companies and some retailers had opposed the age increase, saying it would simply drive people to the city's thriving black market.

"What are you really accomplishing? It's not like they are going to quit smoking. Why? Because there are so many other places they can buy cigarettes," said Jim Calvin, president of the New York Association of Convenience Stores. "Every 18-year-old who walks out of a convenience store is just going to go to the guy in the white van on the corner."

Large cigarette companies now commonly offer merchants incentives to run price promotions to bring in new customers. Those discounts, though, will be banned by the new law, which aims to keep the price of cigarettes high as a way of deterring smokers. The city already has the nation's highest cigarette taxes.

Calvin said the elimination of discounts would further feed the drift away from legal cigarettes, and toward illicit supplies brought into the city by dealers who buy them at greatly reduced prices in other states, where tobacco taxes are low.

Both bills were passed by the City Council late last month. The legislation also prohibits the sale of small cigars in packages of less than 20 and increases penalties for retailers that violate sales regulations.

Joined: 08/17/04
Posts: 2226

As much as I hate smoking, this doesn't make any sense to me. Everyone I know that is an adult smoker (or was) started in high school under the age of 18.

Alcohol purchase is 21+ and I still drank in high school.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6561

I also think it is an ineffective law that will do more harm than good.

Joined: 03/08/03
Posts: 3189

How will it do more harm?

I agree that it's ineffective, but I'm not sure how it would do more harm.

Rivergallery's picture
Joined: 05/23/03
Posts: 1301

Will not matter a whit... When I was in highschool kids were getting high on marijuana... and drinking and smoking.. today they are shooting heroin in JrHigh.. yes Oregon is one of the top states.. doubt uping the age for smoking is going to do anything but make them steal them lol.. or get their friends to buy them.. the cost hasn't deterred them.. they just change from smoking cigs to smoking crack. Seriously.. lots of Meth going on over here too it is INSANE.. and very very sad.

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

I am so sick of this argument:

In signing the bills, Bloomberg turned away criticism that the measures would be economically harmful to thousands of city convenience stores and possibly lead to job losses.

Are there no other arguments than "it will lead to job loss" or "it will cost too much"?

Let's be honest: We don't really care about job loss. If we did, we could do more to protect/prevent this from happening. It's only used when we don't want something to happen. Can't ban smoking in restaurants - it will lead to loss in revenue because people won't go to the bar! I could go on and on with.

Exactly how will this lead to job loss? Is it going to put all of the 7-11s out of business because under 21 can only buy their Twinkies and yesterday's burritos? The small businesses because their revenue comes from cigarette sales from the 18 - 21 demographics? The health care workers because fewer addicts results in fewer cases of lung cancer thus no longer having such a profitable business? If this is truly a valid issue, and the bulk of those addicted to cigarettes start before they are 18, why not lower the age? I mean, if we can sell to 14 YO, revenue would increase, right? Job creation!

Will it be effective? I don't know. Will the cost start to deter some people from starting? Will the "criminal" aspect of it deter some people from starting? If so, then it seems like it could be effective in a way that we would never be able to measure.

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

"Rivergallery" wrote:

Will not matter a whit... When I was in highschool kids were getting high on marijuana... and drinking and smoking.. today they are shooting heroin in JrHigh.. yes Oregon is one of the top states.. doubt uping the age for smoking is going to do anything but make them steal them lol.. or get their friends to buy them.. the cost hasn't deterred them.. they just change from smoking cigs to smoking crack. Seriously.. lots of Meth going on over here too it is INSANE.. and very very sad.

Well in that case, since it's going to happen anyway, we should just legalize heroin for jr. high students.

What percentage of 11 - 14 years are shooting heroin and how was the study conducted?

Rivergallery's picture
Joined: 05/23/03
Posts: 1301

ethanwinfield - it wasn't a study - it was arrests. I heard it on the radio

mommytoMR.FACE's picture
Joined: 04/10/09
Posts: 781

To my knowledge, heroin is expensive. How many 11-14 year olds have that kind of money? Because once you pop you can't stop, or you go through withdrawal horribly. The addiction starts from the first shot.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6561

"freddieflounder101" wrote:

How will it do more harm?

I agree that it's ineffective, but I'm not sure how it would do more harm.

By having people buy cigarettes on the black market where there is no regulation instead of at a reputable store with records and regulations. I do not think that always is the best policy, but in this case I do. An 18 year old is old enough to enlist and decide to go fight in war, they are also old enough to decide if they want to smoke or not. In this case I believe they are worse off doing an under the table deal with someone on the street corner than they are going to a store and legally buying cigarettes.

I do not believe the ban will make even one person stop smoking or even not start smoking. It will only be a hardship on those people. They could potentially put themselves in positions where they are taken advantage of by older adults. All around, I do not see any benefits and many problems with the law.

Rivergallery's picture
Joined: 05/23/03
Posts: 1301

"mommytoMR.FACE" wrote:

To my knowledge, heroin is expensive. How many 11-14 year olds have that kind of money? Because once you pop you can't stop, or you go through withdrawal horribly. The addiction starts from the first shot.

That is what I thought but they interviewed them and everything..

Rivergallery's picture
Joined: 05/23/03
Posts: 1301

Chasing the Dragon: Heroin Addiction in Oregon - AllTreatment.com
13 Redmond teens face drug charges: Undercover operation reveals illegal drug activity at Redmond High - Redmond Reporter
Suspected heroin dealers arrested near junior high school - KPTV - FOX 12
Milwaukie High student, 17, dies from apparent heroin overdose | OregonLive.com

Regarding Cost - from the last one - "Drug experts say that heroin became a cheaper, more plentiful alternative as more people become addicted to expensive prescription drugs such as oxycodone, and Oregon cracked down on methamphetamine. One dose costs as little as $15, and novices often first experience the drug by igniting a small black tar ball and inhaling the smoke. Addiction can follow within days or weeks, when some users begin injecting the drug to intensify the effects."

These were just the top Google stories..
This is a real problem in my state.. the drug use in my state is crazy..

mom3girls's picture
Joined: 01/09/07
Posts: 1535

"Rivergallery" wrote:

Chasing the Dragon: Heroin Addiction in Oregon - AllTreatment.com
13 Redmond teens face drug charges: Undercover operation reveals illegal drug activity at Redmond High - Redmond Reporter
Suspected heroin dealers arrested near junior high school - KPTV - FOX 12
Milwaukie High student, 17, dies from apparent heroin overdose | OregonLive.com

Regarding Cost - from the last one - "Drug experts say that heroin became a cheaper, more plentiful alternative as more people become addicted to expensive prescription drugs such as oxycodone, and Oregon cracked down on methamphetamine. One dose costs as little as $15, and novices often first experience the drug by igniting a small black tar ball and inhaling the smoke. Addiction can follow within days or weeks, when some users begin injecting the drug to intensify the effects."

These were just the top Google stories..
This is a real problem in my state.. the drug use in my state is crazy..

Amen, just spent a couple nights with DH's aunt and uncle who both work with law enforcement. The illegal drug use in Oregon is astonishingly high. And heroin use has skyrocketed with the crack down on meth houses

Rivergallery's picture
Joined: 05/23/03
Posts: 1301

This is what the news report was discussing.. finally found the article it was discussing - Heroin a top killer in Ore., rising among teens | kgw.com Portland

ange84's picture
Joined: 12/28/09
Posts: 6564

Changing the legal age won't do much. Here they've raised costs , enforced plain packaging with quite gruesome ( to me anyway) pictures of smoking related compilations and they can't be display ed ( locked away with a roller door style cover over them) smoke g is banned at pubs, clubs and restraints and within four meters of any doorway. And still people continue the addiction .

Joined: 03/08/03
Posts: 3189

"AlyssaEimers" wrote:

By having people buy cigarettes on the black market where there is no regulation instead of at a reputable store with records and regulations. I do not think that always is the best policy, but in this case I do. An 18 year old is old enough to enlist and decide to go fight in war, they are also old enough to decide if they want to smoke or not. In this case I believe they are worse off doing an under the table deal with someone on the street corner than they are going to a store and legally buying cigarettes.

I do not believe the ban will make even one person stop smoking or even not start smoking. It will only be a hardship on those people. They could potentially put themselves in positions where they are taken advantage of by older adults. All around, I do not see any benefits and many problems with the law.

That makes sense. And I couldn't agree more that if you're old enough to go to war, you're old enough to smoke and drink.

I do think that a lot of people have quit because of how difficult it is to smoke now. I used to be a smoker and I stopped when I decided to get pregnant, but I was on my way to quitting anyway because it became a thing you had to step out and do, and I liked it when it was part of my everyday life. Once I had to go outside to smoke in winter it lost its charm.

KimPossible's picture
Joined: 05/24/06
Posts: 3312

I dont' think you need to be worried about a huge tobacco black market. It isn't becoming completely unavailable and unregulated....it would just become unavailable to those under 21...like alcohol. There is no big 'alcohol black market' instead, there are fake ids and older people buying alcohol for younger people.

I don't really think that constitutes an unregulated black market Smile

That being said, i agree with Laurie's earlier statement...i think its ineffective, but i don't think its all that harmful. Only way i can think of it as harmful is the whole 'forbidden fruit' psychology...people will want it more if they know they aren't supposed to have it...for even longer. Maybe.

mommytoMR.FACE's picture
Joined: 04/10/09
Posts: 781

Is there a black market for tobacco? Lol I honestly don't know.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6561

The situation I had in mind was more of an 18 year old female going to an older guy for cigarettes and being taken advantage of in exchange.

KimPossible's picture
Joined: 05/24/06
Posts: 3312

"AlyssaEimers" wrote:

The situation I had in mind was more of an 18 year old female going to an older guy for cigarettes and being taken advantage of in exchange.

Okay thats not really the definition of black market. I don't really know how much of a problem this kind of thing is. I mean...when it comes to alcohol, i never had to have sex with strange men to get alcohol when i was underage...it was a heck of a lot easier than that.

ETA: And if this was really a problem..it would already be a problem. I mean why would an 18 year old who can't by cigarettes do something like that but a 16 year old wouldn't??

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4100

I'd love to see tobacco flat-out banned so anything that gets us closer to that is fine with me.

KimPossible's picture
Joined: 05/24/06
Posts: 3312

"Spacers" wrote:

I'd love to see tobacco flat-out banned so anything that gets us closer to that is fine with me.

Well now that i could see creating a black market Smile

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4100

"KimPossible" wrote:

Well now that i could see creating a black market Smile

LOL! Yeah, I haven't quite worked out the specifics on it yet....

ClairesMommy's picture
Joined: 08/15/06
Posts: 2299

"mommytoMR.FACE" wrote:

Is there a black market for tobacco? Lol I honestly don't know.

lol...in the strictest sense of the term, yes there is. Smokes are smuggled across the border, mostly across the lakes all the time. I could drive down to Cornwall and stand on the lakeshore at night and hear gunfire (if I really wanted to) between the natives smuggling smokes across the border and the OPP/NY State Police. Of course, that was quite a few years ago. I think border security has been stepped up a notch or two since 9/11.

I don't think this is really going to be all that effective, but nor do I think a big smokocalypse will ensue. Smile

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

Smokocalypse is a fun word to say.

My only real opinion on this is that like others, I feel that if you can go off to war, get married without your parent's permission, vote, and be tried as an adult, you should be allowed to legally smoke and drink. As a country we need to decide when we think people are truly adults and then stick with that.