I quit smoking and chewing about 20 years ago. Prior to that, I smoked about 2 packs a day. For those of you that can’t picture that, imagine every video I make having at least one smoke break in it. I started smoking when I was 16, 2 years before I was legally allowed to buy tobacco (I dipped for a few years prior to that). I quit smoking when I was 26, when my tonsils swelled up so big that I could barely breath. The surgeon said it was like removing a golf ball from my throat.
In the United States, you have to be 16 to drive a car, you have to be 21 to buy liquor, and it used to be that you had to be 18 to buy tobacco. You have to be 19 to buy lottery tickets, and 21 to even enter a casino in the Midwest and Vegas (haven’t been to Atlantic City). If you’re over 15 and commit a crime, you can be charged as an adult (based upon your skin color?) even if that crime is prostitution. And, of course, you can be drafted into the military (or enter voluntarily) at age 18 (technically you can start training earlier than that). To make this point perfectly clear, you can start training to kill people for God and country at age 16, but you have to wait 5 years before you smoke a victory cigar.
I am not here to tell you that smoking is good. If you smoke, you probably smell like an ash tray and will likely have problems breathing (just like if you’re fat, you probably smell like cheese and will likely have problems living past 50). We have genuine problems in the world; how does raising the legal age for tobacco help to “Keep America Great?”
“We have to take care of our kids, most importantly, so we’re going to have an age limit of 21 or so, so we’ll be coming out with something next week very important on vaping,” Trump said while standing outside of the White House in November. Donald Trump actually thinks raising the age to buy tobacco will “take care of our kids?”
This shows how out of touch our President actually is. When I was 16, I had driven across the country by myself, I had flown internationally by myself, I had moved furniture for cocaine and cash (mostly cocaine). I had participated in several mechanical projects that would flummox adults, even today. To be blunt, I lived more before I was 18 than some people do in their entire 80 year lives. To be fair, I was never President of the United States. Yet I wasn’t legally allowed to buy smokes until I was 18. And I’ve never been legally allowed to buy cocaine.
If you smoke, drink, do cocaine, smoke pot, trip acid, shoot heroin or tweak your ass off on good ‘ol meth, you’ll likely agree that the age you started would hardly matter. Maybe you were older than 16, maybe you were older than 21. I would think having some sort of penalty available for the State to prosecute predators using these substances for leverage against children should be in place, but not for children that are about to turn 21. That’s fuckin stupid.
The truly sad thing about this is that this is the only sign I’ve seen that our split government can get together and actually do the fucking job they’re paid to do, which is pass legislation (not legislation, actually, just a “spending bill” that allows the government to continue working).
Did you vote to have the legal age to buy tobacco products to 21? Do you know anyone who did? Let me know in the comments, even if your opinion is that I’m fuckin stupid. Or fat. Whatever.