Where there's smoke . . . Part 1

Perhaps you think that being a Christian was the most unpolitically correct thing you can do in American society today. I would have to disagree. The worst possible thing you can be in American today is a smoker. The governor of Minnesota [who, by the way, is no longer an ex-professional wrestler] is trying to ban flavored cigarettes from the state. Part of a quote from Governor Pawlenty in this article really stuck out to me: "They [big tobacco] are clearly undertaking a marketing campaign . . . to attract new smokers." Hmmmmmm. I attended Bible College or a Christian University or something like that, so I might not be the best with economics, but let me at least give it a try. The point of a business is to make money. Those businesses must get people to buy their product in order to make money. With so many people quitting smoking today [and with the continued flow of court settlements] tobacco companies do need new people to buy their cigarettes. So they might want new customers who will buy their product. I guess the governor might be right on this one.

The real reason people are bent out of shape is because they say these flavored cigs are appealing to minors. I'm not too sure about that charge. But "save the children" has been a rally cry for this entire attack on tobacco companies. Yet last time I checked, it wasn't illegal for the tobacco companies to make and sell their product. Big tobacco has paid the price for the cover-up they made in the 50's, 60's and 70's: huge settlements and continued embarrassment. They've been putting serious warning labels on packs for almost twenty years now ["This product will kill you"]. We need to either make tobacco totally illegal or move on.

And what really blows my mind is that beer companies get off the hook. I guess the government recognized that prohibition was a debacle and they don't want to go there again, but alcohol-related incidents cause more problems in our society than tobacco. And aren't there still those lawsuits out there against McDonalds for making people obese? We'll blame anyone we can if it means we can make a buck.

I think this issue is less political and more a reflection of our society not wanting to be accountable. At some point we need to fess up for our own screw-ups. The next generation will continue to smoke Marlboros, drink Bud, and eat Taco Bell. Let's just see where that gets us in another twenty years.