It’s being called “the toughest crackdowns on the tobacco industry in modern times.” New Zealand hopes to create a “smoke-free generation” by 2027, by banning the sale and purchase of cigarettes/tobacco products.
“This is an historic day for the health of our people,” the NZ health ministry declared. Maybe so, but it isn’t an historic day for freedom.
For full disclosure, none of your editors smoke, and we don’t get any money from the tobacco industry. Nonetheless, we can’t help noting the hypocrisy of those on the left who have been arguing for decades to legalize marijuana are are the same people behind cigarette and vaping bans. This move to ban Marlboro also seems to be driven by the same health authoritarians who want to force people to wear masks forever and to require workers to get vaccinated.
The bottom line is this: banning smoking won’t end smoking, it will only drive the industry underground and enrich the new Al Capones. Have we learned nothing from Prohibition?