Back to Teens Unfiltered
Legal Issues


All states make their own laws and regulations about smoking and tobacco sales and usage. Click here to find tobacco laws about your state. Here is the link to find out about tobacco sales laws in New Mexico.

Most states or about twenty states and the District of Columbia limit smoking in work places and of these states only one (California) meets the healthy people 2000 objective by banning or limiting it to separated ventilated areas Forty-one states and the District of Columbia have laws restricting smoking in state government worksites, but only 13 of these states meet the nation's Healthy People 2000 objective. Currently, 28 states and D.C. limit smoking in commercial day care centers, and 22 meet the Healthy People 2000 objective. Five states (Hawaii, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Jersey, and Tennessee) have strengthened their smoke-free indoor air laws since the 1995 report.

Twenty-eight states and D.C. have laws that limit smoking in commercial day care centers. Of these states, only 22 meet the Healthy People 2000 objective. Thirty states and D.C. have laws that restrict smoking in restaurants.  All states prohibit the sale of tobacco products to minors. Twenty-three states and D.C. may suspend or revoke a retail tobacco products license for violation of youth access laws, an increase of 11 states since the 1995 report.

All states have an excise tax on cigarettes. As of December 31, 1998, the average tax was 38.9 cents per pack and ranged from 2.5 cents per pack in Virginia to one dollar per pack in Alaska and Hawaii. Thirteen states increased their cigarette tax since the 1995 report; increases ranged from 12 cents in New Hampshire to 71 cents in Alaska. A Healthy People 2000 objective is to increase combined state and federal tobacco excise taxes to at least 50 percent of the average retail price of all cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products. Only 42 states have an excise tax on smokeless tobacco products, and many tax these products at a per-pack rate much lower than that for cigarettes.

More than half of all states (30 states) have preemption provisions in their tobacco control laws. Six states have passed preemptive laws since the 1995 report. Of these, Indiana and Maine did not have previous preemptive laws in any area tracked in the report. However, Maine repealed its preemptive law as of June 1997. Preemptive legislation is defined as legislation that prevents a local jurisdiction from enacting laws more stringent than, or at a variance with the state law.

Tobacco use in the United States causes approximately 430,000 deaths each year, including an estimated 3000 deaths from lung cancer among nonsmokers exposed to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) (1). In addition, an estimated 62,000 coronary heart disease deaths annually among nonsmokers exposed to ETS (2). The detrimental health effects of exposure to ETS are well documented and include, in addition to lung cancer and coronary heart disease among adults, low birth weight and sudden infant death syndrome from exposure during and after pregnancy and asthma, bronchitis, and pneumonia in children (2). This report summarizes the 1999 prevalence of current cigarette smoking among adults by state and the proportion of persons who work indoors and who report that their workplaces have smoke-free policies. The findings indicate that in 1999, adult smoking prevalence differed more than two-fold across states (13.9%--31.5%) and that the proportion of persons who reported that their workplace had an official smoke-free policy ranged from 61.3%--82.1%. As the respondents' level of education increased, they were more likely to report working under a smoke-free policy.

This page really doesnt mean anything if  nobody cares about the laws against tobacco. It doesnít really matter if you know about the laws against tobacco. Ask any cop to see if they know about them.

Most of them were made in the early 1900ís and most of them were made to protect pregnant women and
their unborn babies from death.  In most states you could walk right up to a baby's crib and blow smoke into the baby's face and get away with it. Even if you do smoke you probably wouldn't do that. The point is you could unless you're in Michigan or Iowa you will be fined if you smoke near a pregnant woman. Even if you're already smoking, its your responsibility to put out you're cigarette. It really depends on how desperately you need a cigarette and on how bad your addiction is.

 Now don't get me wrong all these laws were the result of long boring research by boring people that don't understand that the people that smoke donít care about the what smoking  does to their bodies like cancers, viruses, comas, impotency, and the end result of death.

I know kids that started to smoke just so they could die young. They want the pain. But any way the laws that there are were made for the people like them to protect them from them selves. Itís just that many times nobody ever enforces them. Earlier I said you could get fined for smoking around pregnant women. You could get fined if they enforced the law that was passed in the year 1909. Often no one knows about them just like homeless people everyone thinks if you ignore them theyíll go away and thatís the way it is for the laws too.

Another cause to make laws against tobacco is to protect infants from SIDS. That stands for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Not a lot of people want to see a kid at the age of three gasping with asthma, and to lower the rate of spontaneous abortion caused by cigarette smoke.

So basically all these laws were made to keep babies and people from getting sick and dying. Pretty much every state has to meet the healthy people 2010 thing. They get the numbers for that by calling people on the phone and asking about smoking behavior. They also take  polls at work places where smokers are separated from other workers. Plus they count the number of smoke free work places.

Click here to see Vending Machine laws by state.

Back to Teens Unfiltered