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  • Writer's pictureBen Balliro

Things are Getting out of Hand

I've been reading recent news articles online about how more states are passing legislation on increasing smoking bans in public parks and public outdoor venues. I've also found out similar states are increasing the smoking bans to 21. This is a paradigm shift in power since the USFDA has implemented it's overreaching authority August 2016. As I sit here smoking my A.J. Fernandez Perfecto I realize that opportunities to enjoy this cigar, and others like it, are slowly being extricated from society with an ever-growing government dictatorship. E.g. Recently Sioux Falls SD has issued a new smoking ban; *"the city council passed an ordinance that bans the use of tobacco products and electronic smoking devices within 25 feet to the entrance to any city building, as well as at city parks during events geared towards youth.While smoking on the city’s golf courses is still allowed, it has been banned in the areas around the clubhouses". In San Angelo Texas local government expanded smoking bans to public parks. **"The ban had previously covered the seating areas of all outdoor sports arenas, stadiums, and amphitheaters, as well as the seating areas of golf courses and public parks where people are assembled to witness sports or other events."

It saddens me to see the ignorance of our generation being misled into believing that cigar smoking is the detriment of society when in fact there are far greater and exponentially more harmful vices on the market. Take drinking for example; according to the 2014 census taken by the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration states that on average two in three people will likely be involved in a drunk driving accident in their lifetime. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services in 2013 States that 28.7 million people admitted to driving under the influence of alcohol, more than the population of Texas.

Yet I see no influence on the governments part to ban or reduce the public venues for drinking, in fact public venues and outdoor activities encourage drinking with the safe suffix "please drink responsibly". Oh come on, give me a break. The problem is people look at the statistics of tobacco related deaths involving cigarettes and think premium cigars are exactly the same thing or worse. The truth is they are not the same. The demographics, the lifestyle, and consumption usage, and the chemical makeup is different than synthetic chemicals used in the bleached paper of cigarettes. This is the ignorance of sheeple who do not, and refuse to, understand the differences in premium cigars vs. other tobacco products. Now, I'm not going to say that smoking cigars is necessarily healthy, although I have evidence to prove that otherwise. What I am going to emphasize is that cigars are a legal product, for now, and have a rich culture, heritage, history, and vital role to the development of many nations around the globe, including war efforts for the independence of our own nation.

I have also seen an increase in states raising the minimum wage to purchase tobacco equivalent to the age to purchase alcohol. In that respect I really have no issues with per se. To be fair the demographic of cigars smokers tend to be at least 21 years old or older anyway. In fact recently the USFDA conducted a study on premium cigars consumption from our precious youth of today and confirmed that children (persons 17 years or younger) do not smoke premium cigars.*** The study analyzed the tobacco use of 13,651 children, ranging in age from 12 to 17 years, and the data shows that only 2.3 percent had ever smoked a traditional cigar, and less than 1 percent (0.7 percent) had tried one within the past 30 days of being surveyed. So really, who is the USFDA really "protecting" I wonder?

Also, this argument that children and everyone within a 5 mile radius is getting cancer from second hand smoke, is not talking about cigar smoking, it's referring to, again, cigarette smoking. That lifestyle is both addictive and habituates you must have a cigarette in your hand at all time to function basic daily activities. I'll be frank with you, if you are smoking cigarettes around your kids all day long in closed quarters forcing your child to inhale your smoke, then there is nothing wrong with the cigarette, you're just a useless ignorant parent. These are the same ignorant despots who start drinking vodka at 8 am and continue drink all day long and cause marital strife and parental discourse with your kids. I've never once heard of any parent coming home from a long day at work, lighting a Fuente Fuente OpusX and due to his nicotine buzz proceeds to beat his children senselessly and cheat on his wife, but you hear stories of drunken parents doing this all the time!

It's time to wake up America and realize that the government couldn't care less about protecting our children or the safety of it's citizens. It's about government control to take your rights away little by little until one day you wake up and look outside your door and see two Fingermen locking your house down for curfew. Look past the nonsense and realize cigar smoking is not a crime, it is not harming anyone except the cigar smoker themselves and if an establishment wants to cater to those patrons and are willing to pay for this amenity, they should have the Constitutinal right to do so.

* by Patrick Lagreid

** by Patrick Lagreid

*** by David Savona

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