Biden administration should move quickly on ban of menthol cigarettes
Ending the sale of menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars by the end of the year will save lives and protect our youth.
Right now, the White House is in the final stages of considering rules to end the sale of menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars in the U.S. As officials get closer to finalizing these rules, the tobacco industry is working harder to try to stop the rule to protect their profits at the expense of the health of Illinois residents.
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While the tobacco industry spreads false claims about job losses, policing issues and illicit trade, it is important for us to keep focused on the facts:
- Ending the sale of menthol and flavored cigars will save lives.
- Over 40% of kids who smoke cigarettes use menthol cigarettes, and close to 65% of kids who smoke cigars use flavored cigars.
- More than 12% of adults smoke in Illinois, and nearly 17.1% of high school students use a tobacco product.
- Smoking costs our state more than $5 billion each year in healthcare costs.
Research shows that ending the sale of menthol cigarettes would result in a significant number of people quitting smoking and fewer kids starting, so ending the sale of both menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars will save lives.
I am joining the American Lung Association to urge the Biden Administration to finalize the proposed rules to end the sale of menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars by the end of the year to save lives and protect our youth. Join me by signing the petition at Lung.org/Stop-Menthol.
Tom Andreesen, chair, Greater Chicago Local Leadership Board, American Lung Association
Do we mourn the same for Israeli and Palestinian children?
Each of us should look deeply into our hearts to help understand whether we experience a sharper pain when we hear of the violent death of an Israeli child as opposed to a Palestinian child.
Are such hidden biases influencing the actions of American politicians, and especially President Joe Biden, as they grapple with the historical background and current realities of the war in Israel and Gaza?
Mary F. Warren, Wheaton
Informed voters key to preserving democracy
If you always vote Republican, or you’re thinking of it, please stop watching Fox “News” and look at actual statistics and see how much progress has been made under the Democrats, despite a divided government.
After you’ve done that, look at what the Republican Party has accomplished. Close your eyes, and you have your answer. The future of our democracy depends on educated and informed voters, and your vote counts.
My father and father-in-law fought in World War II, and my mother and mother-in-law worked in defense plants so we could win the war against fascism.
They would be appalled at today’s Republicans and the type of government they appear to favor. Winston Churchill said it best: “... it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.”
Ken Weiss, Palatine