Save lives. Raise the legal smoking age from 18 to 21. Discourage young people from smoking. Who could be opposed to that?
But there are strong arguments against the new law approved by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Banning 18 – 20 year olds from legally buying cigarettes really is arguably a double standard.
It’s easy to see this as another example of treating this age group as adults-on-training-wheels. They can drive a car, vote, and go to war, but buying cigarettes or booze is verboten.
What New York is saying to its young citizens is that while it’s OK for under 21’s to protect us, or be responsible enough to get behind the wheel, they must also be protected against themselves.
This city is already plastered with warnings about the evils of tobacco. Stores are prohibited from prominently displaying packs of cigarettes at the front of the counter.
Not long ago…
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