We started the year with a report on France and Germany’s nationwide anti-smoking initiatives. Both countries had taken giant leaps toward lessening tobacco use in societies firmly attached to their smoky pasts. We’re continuing the year with a look at the United States’ efforts, but the results are not nearly as good.
According to the Lung Association’s sixth annual report card, the federal government has received nearly all Fs for its progress in the fight against tobacco in 2007. It failed in terms of the $.39 excise tax (never approved), the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (never passed) and its ongoing anti-smoking programs (never much). Its only redemption was not much of a redemption – a D for the tobacco control treaty, which while signed by the President, was never approved by the Senate. The federal government did horribly, and it’s not much better on the state level.
While seven states strengthened their smoke-free air laws and New York City continued to stub out smoking rates, no one else did much. There are still 18 states with no smoke-free laws. There are a limited number of tobacco prevention and cessation programs, and funding for more is all but nonexistent. Cigarette taxes are minimal and sadly stagnant. Meanwhile, the tobacco industry is spending billions of dollars on promotion, tempting teens and adults with new products and flashy ads.
It’s clear that you can’t rely on the government, state or federal, to help you eradicate smoke from your life, at least not for a while yet. So take it upon yourself. Do what you have to, to quit smoking. Eliminate tobacco from your individual life and then, move on to those around you. Help educate them on the dangers of smoking and second-hand smoke. Leave your leaders at the bottom of the class, and earn an A for your efforts against tobacco.
- Image Source: http://www.locustlane.ecasd.k12.wi.us
|Herbs Etc – Smoke Free Spray Professional Strength – 1 oz.|