Your Opinion: Response on cigarette taxes

Dear Editor:

I would like to respond to Janet Wilson’s letter titled “Increase tax on cigarettes.”

First, I am constantly amazed, but not at all surprised at the mindset of people like her. They and their non-stop rhetoric of “We need to punish those evil smokers by hammering them with massive sin taxes.”

Wilson states in her letter that the additional money could be used for programs like education, health care costs, etc.

Well, that’s all fine and good if the money would actually end up going towards those programs.

But as we saw back in 2012 with Prop B and with Missouri’s enormous share of the huge Big Tobacco Settlement of 1998, I would certainly think that folks like Wilson would finally wake up to the reality that that kind of windfall money has a very strange, convenient, way of ending up getting re-appropriated to general revenue along with other non-related expenditures.

In case she hasn’t noticed, we are living in times of record deficits, and cash-strapped budgets in our state and many others. With all due respect, If you are so naive to believe that all of that new revenue would actually be used for the programs that you cited, you’re indeed bluffing yourself.

I really do not know what more I could say to you and others like you, except do your homework and research these things. It’s public record, and It’s your right as an American to stay and be informed on the issues. Thank you.


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