New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s “health train” left the station at Moronic long ago, and is now approaching a village called The Twilight Zone. A city ordinance is reportedly being drafted to restrict the use of fake cigarettes.
Three bills, all restricting the purchase, sale and use of tobacco products, are in the works, according to The Daily Mail Online. The measures would:
Raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21;
Place a $10.50-per-pack-minimum price on cigarettes and prohibit coupons and
Prohibit the display of in-store tobacco product advertising.
But the legislation’s most bizarre provision would define electronic cigarettes, known as e-cigarettes, as a “tobacco product,” even though they contain no tobacco. They contain water vapor and nicotine — but no tar or tobacco.
They contain water vapor and nicotine — but no tar or tobacco.
The Mail reported:
critics of e-cigs argue that they have no no purpose other than to perpetuate nicotine addiction.
However, a study released this month by Drexel University concluded that the chemicals in e-cigs are not harmful to users or those in their proximity.
This is just the latest in a long line of Hizzonor’s attempts to regulate the health — and lives — of those living within New York’s five boroughs. Other efforts included ordinances restricting tobacco products, limits on the size of sugary drinks and, most recently, an attempt to get people to use stairs instead of elevators.
Michael Siegel, a professor of community health sciences at the Boston University School of Public Health, supports e-cigarette use and believes Bloomberg’s proposals “would be a public health disaster.”
“I have no problems with this ordinance as a whole—raising the age, banning advertising. But [electronic-cigarettes] are a product that’s literally saving people’s lives, people who are literally at risk of disease and death, and giving them an alternative,” Siegel told Gothamist. “What are these people gonna do?”
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