Will I Quit Smoking Because Of The New Cigarette Tax?

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Editor:

I am a smoker. I have been smoking cigarettes for approximately 39 years and have no intention of quitting smoking just because the government has decided to tax me for buying them.

I do find it really stupid of the government to tax me for smoking when they don't up the taxes for alcohol. I mean, if we are going to tax people for their bad habits, let's get them all.

If we are looking at the betterment of society by forcing people to quit smoking because nonsmokers shouldn't have to breathe secondhand smoke, let's look at a few others, too.

How many drunks kill other people on the road or otherwise every year? How many alcoholics kill themselves and ruin families every year? How many diabetics are diagnosed every year and told by their doctors that they need to change their diets or go on insulin? How many heart patients a year are told to change their diets or they'll die?

Lots of people have bad habits and yet there is no call for an increase in taxes on alcohol, insulin or cholesterol medication. I am not calling for that either. All I am asking is to be given the same consideration as other people. If you're going to tax my cigarettes for the betterment of my health and that of the greater public, then tax everything else, too.

Isn't it ironic that a lot of people say smokers' health problems are more expensive so we should tax the cigarettes until they are forced to quit, yet none of the taxes that the government is collecting are going toward getting smokers to quit on their own or for the higher insurance premiums? They are used for preschool education.

Let's tax alcohol and use it to build more affordable housing for lower income people with young families. That will make people stop drinking.

Let's tax cholesterol medication and insulin and build more centers for our senior citizens in our community.

That will make people change their diets, so that they will live longer. Let's not just single out one bad habit, let's take care of all of them.

Steve Colbert

Payson

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