US to ban targeted health threat from menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars | Patrick Malone & Associates PC | DC Injury Lawyers
The Biden administration ban menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars with new regulations to be released in the next year – actions Big Tobacco should fight but supporters say they could have had great health benefits who have been targeted to buy and use these products.
Smoking is one of the leading killers in this country, and particularly among African Americans, with critics claiming that cigarette companies have exploited communities of color, the poor and LGBTQ people with flavorings to popularize harmful products. As the Washington Post reported on the Federal Food and Drug Administration’s announced plans:
“[Its] banning menthol would reduce health disparities between white and black smokers. About 85% of African American smokers use menthol cigarettes, three times the rate of white smokers, and their quit rate has not declined as quickly as it has for whites. As a result, black smokers suffer disproportionate rates of illness and death. Likewise … the effort to eliminate menthol and the aromas of little cigars [is] a way to prevent young people from starting to smoke and to help them quit. Little cigars are increasingly popular with young smokers; more high school smokers now use little cigars than cigarettes. “
Dr Janet Woodcock, Acting Chief of the FDA, said that in a statement:
â€œBanning menthol – the last flavor allowed – in cigarettes and banning all flavors in cigars will help save lives, especially among those disproportionately affected by these deadly products. Through these actions, the FDA will help dramatically reduce youth initiation, increase the odds of smoking cessation among current smokers, and address health disparities experienced by communities of color, low-income populations and LGBTQ + people, all of whom are much more likely to use these tobacco products. “
Regulators have stressed that their crackdown on menthol and flavors will affect manufacturers and distributors – it will not target consumers, as critics have claimed. the ACLU and other civil liberties groups opposed a ban on menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars as an unfair burden on communities of color, the group arguing that its implementation could lead to even more friction between blacks and police or other authorities. But as the Washington Post reported:
â€œThe FDA will not enforce a menthol ban targeting consumers. Once a ban goes into effect, the government’s role would be to regulate the manufacture, sale, distribution and importation of cigarettes – to keep them away from consumers in the first place.
Big Tobacco reacted quickly to the announcement of the planned FDA bans, and experts expect legal action to unfold soon. This means that regulators can face a long battle in court, as well as resistance in Congress, especially from state tobacco lawmakers. As also reported by the New York Times, quoting Mitch Zeller, director of the Center for Tobacco Products at the FDA:
â€œThe process of banning the sale and manufacture of menthol cigarettes or flavored cigars is long. Two proposals will be drafted in detail, open for public comment, and then considered by the White House. The last time the FDA proposed to ban menthol cigarettes, in 2013, it received more than 174,000 public comments. “By law, we must read every comment that comes to us and consider them carefully,” Zeller said. “
Black community health officials hailed the administration’s planned menthol ban and called on Biden officials to also step up campaigns to educate African Americans and others about the harms of smoking – and for current users to get off the highly addictive and damaging nicotine.
Dr Toni Richards-Rowley – Tampa-based pediatrician, vice-president of the Florida chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and member of its group of specialists in health equity and government affairs committees – told USA Today this:
â€œBig Tobacco over the past 60 years has really targeted the African American community. It is a problem. Targeting children, and certainly black children, with a highly addictive product creates adults addicted to menthol cigarettes. The resulting health disparities are extraordinary. “
In my practice, I do not only see the harm suffered by patients when seeking medical services, but also the significant injuries that can be inflicted on them and their loved ones by defective and dangerous products, in particular the perilous goods peddled by Big Tobacco.
Smoke cigarettes, federal officials report, is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. It caused more than 480,000 deaths in the pre-pandemic period each year in the United States. Smoking normally causes more deaths each year than these causes combined: human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), illegal drug use, alcohol use, vehicle injuries and firearms incidents.
Smoking causes about 9 in 10 lung cancer deaths, experts say. More women die from lung cancer each year than from breast cancer. Smoking is the cause of 8 in 10 deaths from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). And it increases the risk of death from all causes in both men and women.
If you don’t smoke or vape now, please don’t start. And if you do, tell your loved ones and your doctor about ways to stop. You will soon be feeling better and your health will likely improve. You may also find more money in your wallet or purse, especially with the the average retail price for a pack of cigarettes is $ 6.65 per pack, or $ 688 per year for a smoker of two packs per week.
We already have seliminated many flavors aimed at making kids addicted to vaping. We have a lot of work to do to put an end to the nasty, unhealthy and costly smoking and vaping habits.