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Sorry, kids, no more tobacco for you

The Boston Board of Health voted today to raise the minimum age to buy tobacco in the city from 18 to 21. That includes e-cigarettes.

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What an incredibly dumb decision to raise the minimum age to buy e-cigs to twenty one. Why make it more difficult for adults who want to try and quite smoking, or at least reduce the harm caused by tobacco cigarettes? Unfortunately this was a decision that was made without an understanding of the current science.

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When mumbles banned flavored cigars and paid for ads because they thought kids where smoking them. Well they where, just the outer parts with a separately purchased green leafy substance.

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Current science has a firm grasp on the harm done (or not) by e-cigs? Are you from the future?

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     If they're old enough to serve in the military, they're old enough to decide for themselves.

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There's a plug for the Star Wars movie here, even?

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Maybe they should raise the driving age to 21 next.

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That would save lives and be easy to enforce. Smoking is dumb as hell but I'm not sure if raising the tobacco age will work so well.

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is a terrifying proposition

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That's age, not the number of required brain cells. You can keep your license.

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i only needed two of them to consider the massive unemployment and considerable amount of people that would end up being disenfranchised by such a move

also ho boy do you sound mad lmfao

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Smoke cigarettes, ergo cannot vote.

Logic checks.

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Maybe they should reduce the alcohol age to 18 and raise the driving age to 21. You know have a couple of years to figure out responsible drinking before getting behind the wheel of one of the top killers of young adults.

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or 25 might be better

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Banning Santa Claus because he smokes a pipe, is overweight and has rosy cheeks after enjoying an adult beverage?

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How'd you guess?

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Might as well raise the legal age to do anything in Boston to 65 to appease the dinosaurs running this parochial backwater burg.

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if kid want to smoke, let em smoke. at 18 they are adults. let them smoke, let them drink, let the move out, go to college, the military, or prison. they have the right to make choices. period

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to be held accountable for murder at 14, but not enough to smoke for 7 more years.

make up your mind, people

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a class of citizens that has adult accountability if they do something bad, but are disallowed from enjoying the privileges of adult life.

Responsibility without privilege or reward is a bad recipe.

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its a disgusting trend, but ill admit i will do no more than complain about it here. ~*maybe*~ make a whiny post on facebook.

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Maybe it'll get them to vote!

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In what? Uncontested elections are the norm here.

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Serious crimes should have serious consequences, regardless of age. And what's wrong with a system that sends that message. Learn basic concepts such as right and wrong and if you do somebody serious harm like theft or murder, you're held responsible.

Then we'll let you do stupid things like smoke later.

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Surely no one who wants to purchase tobacco products will be able to figure out how to travel to neighboring jurisdictions.

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id be selling NH cigarettes for $15/pack in my dorm in a heart beat

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After a long day at work this idea sounds like a good one.

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Black market $15 a pack? That's what 18 y.o. high school kids are doing right now, which is how my 16 y.o. got started, when I found his and tossed 'em, he had a melt down, ya, he's hooked now. Society is still subsidizing tobacco use via health insurance, lost productivity, house fires, car crashes, etc. Time to up the ante, higher ins. surcharge for smokers? Hell ya!

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Cambridge: 21 to buy
Brookline: 21 to buy
Newton: 21 to buy
Watertown: 21 to buy
Milton: 21 to buy
Canton: 21 to buy
Malden: 21 to buy
Arlington: 21 to buy
Melrose: 21 to buy
Saugus: 21 to buy
Braintree: 21 to buy
Dedham: 21 to buy

Sure, the kids could go to Somerville, Revere, Medford, or Quincy. And for some, that's close. For others, that's quite a ride.

And frankly, if their brain's logic works like yours, they're likely to make a number of trips to jurisdictions where its 21+ to buy without doing a little basic research first!

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What happened when Needham raised the age to buy cigarettes from 18 to 21? Teen smoking felll from 13 to 7%. Neighboring towns went from 15-12%. Guess who buys cigarettes for 16 year olds? 18 year olds. And guess when most people start smoking. Pretty damn early on. This makes perfect sense. Come on.

Also, we should totally raise the tax on cigarettes. Yeah, yeah, it's regressive. Don't want to pay it? Don't buy cigarettes.

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should we raise the drinking age to 24 to prevent those under 21 from drinking too?

probably a good thing there wont ever be a draft again, the class action lawsuit from 18-20 year olds alleging they shouldnt be eligible because they arent adults would be a hoot

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In all honesty it would make more sense if the ages were not the ages of the oldest people in a certain school. 18 are still in high school. 21 year olds are still in college, but everyone there is an adult. Raising the drinking age to 24 would probably reduce the amount of college drinking, but it wouldn't change (by much) the number of minors that are doing dangerous things. Changing the smoking age to 21 means that there are fewer minors in regular contact with friends that can buy cigarettes.

Personally, I would rather change the school system to be more like the UK where trade school or college prep starts around 16ish. Then 18yo can smoke and will be in a separate school from all of the 14yo (the cigarette thing is not the reason I would prefer this).

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Except they didn't just raise the minimum age to buy tobacco cigarettes, they made a harm reduction tool less available - an incredibly dumb decision.

And if you raise the cigarette tax too much you see an influx of black market cigs, as has happened in NY. There is a limit to the effectiveness of the cigarette tax.

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I don't disagree with wanting to end smoking but I would be curious to see who compiled those statistics and what methodology they used. As far as the comment about not wanting to pay the tax so don't buy them, let us explore that further.

Example: I don't drink and I don't want other people to drink, so let's raise the tax to $100 per litre of wine and raise the age to purchase to 50. My justification is that it would lower drunk driving accidents, domestic violence, and suicides. If you don't like it then tough cookies, don't buy wine.

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I am as anti-smoking as it gets, almost militantly so, but I don't agree with this decision. It seems to be part of this whole extended adolescence thing that goes on now. 18-21 year olds are technically adults, yet are being coddled and treated as children in so many ways. They are no longer considered adults as my age group was when we were that age in the 1970s, a more progressive time. The way things are going these days I'm starting to wonder how long it will be until the voting age goes back to 21.

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Although I'm 22 and unfortunately a smoker I will try to be completely unbiased. I started smoking when I was 14. Getting cigarettes at that age was ridiculous easy. We would stand outside a store asking every person that went in to buy my friends and I a pack of cigss in return they can keep the change. Another way of getting ciggs were asking older friends and relatives. By the time I was 16 or 17 when I got my state issued ID I would attempt to buy cigs from any store whose clerk that didn't know how to do the math on how old I was. This law will barely make a dent in curbing smoking. I had many 21 y/o buy me ciggs when I was younger. So an 18 year old can sign up for the military, vote, buy scratch tickets, porn, drive a car just about do anything but buy booze and drive a semitruck but in Boston is not allowed to buy cigarettes? Smoking cigarettes are a terrible thing to do especially with all the chemicals and synthetic tobacco but it shouldn't be restricted to younger adults.

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As a former smoker.. I started smoking under the age of 18, and *always* had someone to buy me smokes. Either my sister did (who was 19) or some older friend. Plus we knew of a few places in town that didn't check IDs. (or we'd go to Vermont)

Raising the age does not curb smoking.. not at all. If you wanna smoke, you'll find a way to get them.

I'd love to see some stats on how much (if any at all) it curbs smoking between the ages of 18-21, because I don't think it does.

Yet another nanny state.. 'we know better than you' rule. You can vote, serve your country, look at porn, but you can't buy smokes.. stupid.

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and when I was a young'un the smoking age in NJ was 16. However NJ had a driving age higher than most states, at 17. So there was an entire year where you were legal to buy smokes but had no ID, which meant that stores couldn't card you. (Although if you really looked too young, they'd tell you to take a hike.) Vending machines were everywhere. Friend of mine was smoking at age 14-15, he went to a restaurant down the street that had a vending machine in the coat room just inside the door. Cigs were something like $1.35/pack, IIRC. My high school even had a designated student smoking area. The administration figured it was easier to police a designated area than have students smoking in bathrooms and stairwells and other, more problematic places.

NJ raised their smoking age to 18 in the late '80s, IIRC. Presumably that's when they also outlawed cigarette vending machines.

Vending machines were really evil because the product was at perfect kid-eyeball height, just like the sugary cereals in the supermarket. Wasn't uncommon for the adults to have the kids working the machine, either. A triumph of marketing genius.

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Thanks for the business!

-Every convenience store owner in every surrounding city and town

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I am not a smoker, but my housemate is.

When Boston banned pharmacies from selling cigarettes it made sense from a healthcare point of view, but it didn't stop my housemate from buying her smokes from CVS and Walgreen's etc. Why? She purchased them in Cambridge, Somerville, Watertown, Milton, Dedham, Brookline, etc. depending on where her job sent her that day.

Raising the "legal" selling age in Boston is only going to send the 18-20-year-olds to Cambridge, Somerville, Watertown, etc. etc. where they will ~still~ be able to buy their smokes legally.

The added costs, if any, of travelling won't deter people who smoke.

And yeah, gotta agree with the many above who think it's ridiculous that 18 is considered old enough to watch porn, vote, and risk life and limb in the military...but not old enough to buy a pack of cigarettes. Guess what? Any 18 year old smoker who joins the military WILL be buying tobacco products (just not in Boston..).

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Maybe I'm unfamiliar with the way these things work, but is the Board of Health, a seven member panel consisting of people affiliated with places like East Boston Neighborhood Health Center and the Dimock Center, simply able to make a unilateral decision like this? There doesn't have to be legislation or a referendum or anything?

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There is a referendum every four years when you vote for mayor - who appoints the members of the board.

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There was legislation to raise the drinking age from 18 to 20 here in MA back in 1979 during the Ed King (remember him?) era. It wasn't left for seven people to decide. Apparently this is different. I'm anti-smoking, by the way, but this is a ridiculous move. Tax cigarettes out of existence.

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If I marketed a new product today, that they found was poisonous and addictive next week, it would be off the market by the end of the month. We all pay the price for these "freedom loving" smokers - through insurance rates.

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We, as a society, entrust that 18 yr olds are mature and wise enough to vote and join the military, but they're not autonomous enough to make decisions regarding their own health?

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... I had too many relatives die from smoking related diseases. But this ordinance is offensively stupid -- and will accomplish little or nothing.

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*shrug* You can't rent a car or be a US representative until one is 25 either. According to Wikipedia, a 18 year old can't even run for *local* office in some places[1]

[]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_candidacy_laws_in_the_United_States

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and demanding governments (local, state) stop infringing on their adult rights. These same governments demand 18-21 year olds be legally considered emancipated adults, will treat them as such in a court of law, hold them to adult responsibilities. The federal government demands 18 plus adult males sign up for selective service (military draft), and accepts 18 plus males and females for military service. Yet, these same governments deny them the legal right to buy and drink alcohol (a legal product), and buy and use tobacco (a legal product) or ecigarettes, some of which contain nicotine (a legal product).

Ironically, 18-21 year old adults, and younger teenagers, even children, are given powerful, mind altering (legal) prescription drugs like they were candy. The same governments that deny 18-21 year old adults the right to buy and use alcohol, tobacco, and products containing nicotine, have no problem with these powerful, addictive, mind altering, prescription drugs, many with terrible side effects.

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At least all the "vice purchasing" (alcohol, tobacco, firearms) are now on the same age.

Should it all be 18 instead of 21? Probably, but at least we're consistent (except for non-handgun firearms which you can still purchase at 18 in MA. That's how fucked up our gun laws are in America...in MA, we think the danger of you possessing tobacco liquid for your vape is more risky than letting you buy a rifle).

But the idea that "sure kill yourself through cigarettes but don't buy booze!" made any sense is at least gone. The next step will be to get the limit set to 18 for both.

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...don't buy booze till you're 21, I think has more to do with teens driving drunk.

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Because 21 year olds driving drunk is better? Safer?

What makes an 18 year old more likely to drive drunk than their 21 year old self? I don't think that 3 years matters. It's poor alcohol use/education. It's treating it like a forbidden fruit punch that leads to kids doing stupid things with alcohol.

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Not familiar with the studies about the teenage brain and decision making related to driving while drunk? Google it.

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Alabama raised the age to purchase to 19 in 2003.
Alaska raised the age to purchase to 19 in 1988.
Hawai'i raised the age to purchase to 21, effective Jan 1 2016.
New Jersey raised the age to purchase to 19 in 2005.
New York City raised the age to purchase to 21 in 2014.
Suffolk Co New York raised the age to purchase to 21 (in 2014?).
Nassau Co New York raised the age to purchase to 19 in 2005.
Cleveland Ohio raised the age to purchase to 21 in 2015.
Utah raised the age to purchase to 19 in (?).
Approximately 80 cities and towns in Massachusetts have raised the age to purchase to 21.

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What I find baffling is how 18 year olds can afford a smoking habit. I had a hard enough time paying for gas and insurance for my crappy old car that I needed to get to my barely better than minimum wage job while going to school. (I grew up in a small NH suburb without public transportation and I had to drive a few towns over to a bigger town for a job that I worked the closing shift and would often get home at 2AM, so no I couldn't ride a bike to and from work.)

I see so many college age students in Boston walking around with a ciggie
hanging out of their mouth. It looks filthy and they look like idiots. They think it's cool, but they'll regret it once their older and get premature aging skin and health scares. Immaturity leads people to do dumb things... sadly.

Time will tell if raising the minimum age to 21 will have positive results.

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