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Could Iowa’s Smoking Age Be Raised To 21?

Spencer Pratt/Getty Images
Spencer Pratt/Getty Images

A county in Northern Illinois will soon become the first county in that state to raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21 years old.

The Lake County board passed the measure on Tuesday and the new ordinance will take effect on January 21st, 2018. Officials with the county health department said the goal is to reduce the number of people smoking, and to increase the distance between people of legal age, and those who aren’t.

The Iowa Legislature has also discussed raising the legal age for tobacco products to 21. The issue died in discussions as recently as 2016. Opponents of the age raise say if someone can vote and go to war, they should also be able to legally buy tobacco products.

Personally, I tend to agree with that argument. Lumping cigarettes in with alcohol doesn’t make sense to me. Tobacco products don’t impair your ability to drive like alcohol can. So why wait another three years? I support the efforts of anti smoking campaigns, but it’s a free country. If you want to risk your health by purchasing a legal product, I believe you should be able to do so.

What do YOU think? Should we raise the age to 21 when it comes to purchasing tobacco products?

[via KCRG]

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