“The legislature finds that the cigarette is considered the deadliest artifact in human history,” states the new bill sponsored by Democratic Rep. Richard Creagan. “The cigarette is an unreasonably dangerous and defective product, killing half of its long-term users.”
If passed, the law would phase in a ban on the sale of cigarettes by raising the legal age to buy the product to 30 in 2020, 40 in 2021, 50 in 2022 and to 60 in 2023 before capping at 100 in 2024.
Hawaii is one of six states—including California, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Oregon
“Basically, we essentially have a group who are heavily addicted—in my view, enslaved by a ridiculously bad industry—which has enslaved them by designing a cigarette that is highly addictive, knowing that [it’s] highly lethal. And, it is,” Creagan told the Hawaii Tribune-Herald.
“The state is obliged to protect the public’s health,” he added. “We don’t allow people free access to opioids, for instance, or any prescription drugs.”
“We, as legislators, have a duty to do things to save people’s lives. If we don’t ban cigarettes, we are killing people,” the lawmaker said.
The bill does not include age limits on chewing tobacco, cigars or e-cigarettes.
What's Your Reaction?
Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.