Friday, 6 May 2016

The Budget’s ‘Cigarette price hike’

It is estimated that by 2020, it will cost $40, to buy a standard packet. Sure, this may be good, but there are two issues that need to be addressed.
Are we breaching on the rights of smokers and does the government really want to stop smokers?

The rights of smokers are basically the same of the non-smoker. You are allowed to do what you want with your body (within boundaries, of course) permitting you take the consequences, but this price hike may be infringing those rights. Sure, it doesn’t make smokers stop smoking, it does cause many to stop, something they may not be able to cope with, or like. People get the point, smoking is bad, yet if they choose to smoke, it is their choice. Why is the government making these people stop when it is their choice? I live in a family where one parent smokes, and I don’t like it. Smoke is toxic, and very dangerous, and I believe that we should try to stop people from smoking, but raising prices to this amount is going to have some negative side effects;
For those who are truly addicted to smoking, no price hike will stop them. This will put them in a great financial crisis of their own, trying to rake up enough money to pay for cigarettes and keep a roof over their families heads. After this, the family may start losing money, having the same effect of gambling. After a while, the situation may become so dire, that the family has to go on welfare, costing the government more money. Has the government looked at this?

Secondly, we need to ask ourselves the question of whether the government really wants to make smokers quit. I heard on the radio last night, on 2GB, a caller mention a great point. If the government really wanted people to stop smoking, they would ban it. This price hike is to rake in more money. Sure, it will help with our economic situation, but the idea of stopping smokers, the idea that the government wants people to stop smoking, is really a cover story. Sure, there is that part to it, but the government needs the money, and this is one of the ways it will get it.

PHOTO CREDIT: Sydney Morning Herald

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