NYC Tobacco Law: Minimum Age Raised to 21

    November 19, 2013
    Erika Watts
    Comments are off for this post.

Young smokers living in New York City are going to have to leave city limits to purchase a pack of cigarettes thanks to the new law Mayor Michael Bloomberg just signed. The law, which goes into effect in May 2014, not only prohibits people under 21 from buying tobacco products in the city, but will also raise the price of a single pack of cigarettes to a minimum of $10.50. This law reportedly makes NYC the only city in America that prohibits tobacco sales to young adults.

For anyone who is worried about how this law will impact small business owners, Bloomberg says the focus should be more on health. “People always try to put things like selling cigarettes in the context of jobs and whether or not it helps or hurts stores,” Bloomberg said at the bill signing ceremony. “I think that is just so outrageously misplaced. This is an issue of whether we’re going to kill people. This century a billion people will die from smoking around the world. And we don’t want any of the people to die to be New Yorkers.”

The law will affect around 27,000 smokers between ages 18 and 20. Bloomberg is hopeful that this law will, at a minimum, reduce these young smokers’ habits and that it will curb smoking in young people who aren’t yet old enough to purchase cigarettes and other tobacco products. These young smokers aren’t completely out of luck though–they can still possess tobacco products under the new law, but they will have to travel outside of city limits to make their purchases.

While a lot of people are happy with the new law since it could possibly decrease tobacco addiction in young people, some people believe this is yet another move by Bloomberg to turn NYC into a nanny state. Would you like to see a similar tobacco law go into place in your city? Respond below.

Aside from signing a law to restrict tobacco sales, Bloomberg also signed a law banning trans fats from restaurants in NYC. The FDA decided earlier this month to follow in Bloomberg’s steps by banning trans fats. Bloomberg also tried to limit soda consumption by banning the sale of sodas larger than 16 ounces, but that was eventually declared unconstitutional.

[Image via YouTube]
  • Bravo America!

    Doesn’t America ever learn? Anything you make taboo will flourish.

    Sex is taboo and we are a sex crazed nation. There is more porn than you can imagine in this country. Our teenagers are screwing like crazy with much older partners. Sex sells everything from lingerie to brake pads. Half the country sex texts, uses porn, sees hookers, goes to strip joints and sends nude pictures online. Drugs are taboo and we have a nation of addicts. We have outrageous laws and we lead the nation in incarceration and really it is not even close. Porn is taboo and my God there are million of people doing it. Just go look at all the pictures on the net. The examples go on and on. Yet, anything you make illegal — those in power can make a buck of it in the black market. If you control the police and you are in power, you can be a corrupt as you want and control the markets.

    Also, gambling which leads to poverty is legal. Alcohol which leads to many violent acts is legal. Cigarettes which have killed thousands is legal. Abortion which has killed ten of millions is legal. In fact, this year alone, there will be more abortions than all the gun deaths in this nation since 1970. Also, you can go fight for your country and die. Wait that isn’t right — you are fighting for the rich and those in power because actually peace makes a country stronger in the long term.

    Bravo America. Keep making stupid decisions. Keep enslaving your people. Keep declining as a nation. Bravo.

    • Crappy Cartoons

      Anything you make taboo will flourish.

      Um doesn’t this logic mean that making abortion taboo or making it more difficult will only cause abortion to flourish? According to your logic abortion in America is at a high level because of all the restrictions which republican law makers have put on it.

      Given that the age for liquor sales has been 21 for quite some time and it has been relatively effective at preventing underage drinking, have the age for the purchase of cigarettes to the same age would make sense. It will not stop teens from smoking, but it will be stop some opportunities.

      I would suggest you check out the record of what politicians have been doing and you will find a whole lot more legislation aimed at curtailing abortion being passed these days than laws aimed at tobacco.

      • Nate Buchner

        The law has been relatively at stopping underage drinking? Are you kidding me? Have you ever been to college? The law is most definitely not effective at stopping it.

      • @Crappy Cartoons

        The paragraph you are focusing on was meant to illustrate all the harmful things that are legal in the Unites States. It is the ultimate hypocrisy and a prime illustration of selective morality in this nation.

        I suggest you look at the teenage alcoholism rates and the tremendous rise in women alcoholics in college. If you think for a moment that underage drinking has gone down, then you are deluding yourself. Also, the number of rapes that has involved drinking has skyrocketed in the past 5 years. In fact, college aged women are more prone to be alcoholics than men now.

        Of course, there is more laws being passed to curtail abortion than tobacco. Where were you in 1999, when Jeffrey Wigand was the insider who blew the whistle on the tobacco companies? In 1999 and the years after, that is when all the tobacco legislation went into effect. That was 14 years ago so of course, there would be less legislation in 2013 because it was already dealt with.

      • Dude

        “It has been relatively effective at preventing underage drinking”. Are you serious?

  • rod

    As the FED GOVT. is always fond of saying FED. law trumps state law. Therefore the states cannot make laws that bypass Fed. law. FED law is 18 for tobacco.The first person or business to get fined for this will win in court arguing the supremacy clause.

    • http://aol Raymond Hilerio

      I think it’s a good law.

    • me

      I believe smoking is a state law they all just have the same law until now.

  • Gmoney

    NY city sucks!

  • Mike

    You know what else is really bad for you? Fast Food. Eat that everyday for a couple years and see where you end up. hah. The whole point of this country and our constitution is Freedom of Choice. That is fading. I do not smoke, i do drink, and i think both should be legal at the age of 18. At 18 you can go to war, kill and be shot at and see things normal people do not see. I think they deserve a beer and a cigarette if they choose to do so. Im not complaining about our country, because we are way more fortunate than most, but things are changing and most of its going the wrong direction.