The Salem News
---- — To the editor:
Recently, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg enacted into law a bill that now raises the legal age to purchase tobacco-related items from 18 to 21 years of age. The law also states that it is not a crime to have tobacco. The mayor stated after signing this act that in his opinion it would have an effect in lowering the health costs in his city.
It is my opinion that during his tenure as mayor, including being reelected to a third term, that Michael Bloomberg will be remembered as one of the great mayors of New York City, because of his many accomplishments.
However, I disagree with the mayor for many reasons regarding this new law. Young people for the most part usually start smoking before the age of 18. They are fully aware of the surgeon general’s warning. The millions of young people that are members of our military who have this habit are under 21 years old and are stationed in this country and other parts of the world fighting to bring peace to that area. They will return to New York and will not be allowed to purchase tobacco products legally.
I fully understand and appreciate Mayor Bloomberg’s concerns in reference to the health and well being of his youthful citizens of his city. However, you cannot eliminate a powerful addition to tobacco by raising the age limit or increasing the cost of these products. Mr. Mayor, this law in essence will not bring forth any changes.