Act to regulate tobacco use beneficial to health, wallets

It was a sad week in Washington for big tobacco, but for everyone else, one lone triumph in an otherwise doom-and-gloom bureaucratic atmosphere.

On Thursday, the House of Representatives passed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, which appoints the Federal Drug Administration as regulator of tobacco manufacturing, marketing and sales, the Associated Press reported.

‘Americans benefit from the oversight the FDA provides on the foods we eat and the medicines we take. Despite the fact that tobacco is one of the deadliest products in America, the FDA has no authority to regulate it. That is just not right,’ House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in an official statement.

The legislation passed in the House by a vote of 298 to 112. The Senate will vote on the bill after the Easter recess. If the bill passes, the FDA would fund its new charge through a user fee on tobacco manufacturers.

‘Every day, approximately 3,500 young people try a cigarette for the first time, and another 1,000 become addicted and become new, regular smokers,’ Pelosi said in an official statement. ‘One-third of these children will eventually die prematurely because of tobacco. We must do all that we can to prevent premature death from smoking. I urge the Senate to pass this legislation without delay and send to President Obama for his signature into law.”

Cigarette smoking isn’t just addictive – it’s dangerous. More than 4,000 Americans die per year, according to Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) who authored the bill.’

College-aged smokers often shrug off pending health risks. But if the long-term disadvantages don’t scare young smokers to cease or limit their smoking habits, consider the short-term disadvantage: cost.’

Cigarette smoking not only affects your lungs, but it also affects your wallet. It’s an expensive vice with no chance of monetary return. The cost of cigarettes is sharply rising with inflation, the economic recession and heavier taxes. With all of the other heavy costs college students must bear, don’t let smoking be one of them.’

Leave a Comment