Tobacco tax is never high enough [Letter]

June 02, 2014

Well, it seems that Vincent DeMarco and his Maryland Citizens Health Initiative Group are back at it again proposing yet another $1 per pack increase in Maryland's tobacco tax which is already highest in the region. In his latest letter to the editor, there's even a thinly-veiled threat to Attorney General Doug Gansler and the Republican candidates for governor that, if elected, they'd better not try to repeal any of the tobacco or alcohol taxes enacted during the O'Malley-Brown administration ("Md.'s tobacco, alcohol tax increases are saving lives," May 28).

You know it seems like only a couple years ago that I wrote a letter that was published in this section criticizing The Sun for supporting Mr. DeMarco and his group in their quest for a $1 tobacco tax increase back then ("Tobacco tax is like speed cameras — a thinly-veiled money grab," Nov. 29, 2012). And I closed the letter with a promise that in five years they would be back again pushing for yet another $1 increase in the tax. Well, I'm big enough to admit when I am wrong — it only took two years! You see, that's the problem, no tax will ever be enough to placate these people. They feel they're better than the rest of us and it's their job to control our behavior to fit what they think it should be, through excessive taxation on tobacco and alcohol.

At this rate, in a few more years it might be cheaper to smoke pot in this state then cigarettes — and pot will probably be legal by then. Oh, the humanity. In the meantime, I may start my own group called CORNCOB for Concerned Opposition Regarding Nitwits Controlling Our Behavior. Kind of catchy, ain't it?

Mark Wilson, Fallston

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