Cigar News: You’ve Gotta Fight For Your Right!

Cigar News: You’ve Gotta Fight For Your Right!

You’ve Gotta Fight For Your Right!

 Editorial by @ WillyStyl

“You’ve gotta fight for your right”  it’s not just a verse from an 80’s Beastie Boys song.  For those of us who love enjoying a premium cigar, and the recreational pleasure that comes with it, it has become a reality.  Many of us are aware of the Food & Drug Administrations efforts to regulate the premium cigar industry, and the consequences that could follow.  If you aren’t feel free to read this fact sheet of the laws recently imposed in Australia here.

Here’s an excerpt:

Beginning December 1, 2012, plain packaging of tobacco products available for retail sale in Australia will be required, making Australia the first country to             mandate plain packaging. The packages must be “drab dark brown,” made of cardboard, rectangular in shape, with no trademarks or other marks anywhere on  the outer surface or inner surface of the package.  Other than health warnings, the tobacco packages may contain only: brand, business or company name; relevant legislative requirements; and any other mark or trade mark permitted by regulations issued under the Tobacco Plain Packaging Act….

The short and ugly of this is possible future that includes no walk-in humidors, no ornate boxes, no advertising, no contests, no events, no lifestyle-centric magazines, manufacturer participation in herfs and the like, and warning labels that cover more than half of the packaging.

There are a lot of people fighting for your right to enjoy a premium cigar including the Cigar Rights of America and efforts by manufacturers such as Rocky Patel and Marvin Samel of Drew Estate who are regularly in Washington to lobby on our behalf.

But in the end, politics are local, and under that premise, one of our site sponsors, Smoke Inn Cigars, and it’s proprietor, Abe Dababneh hosted Congressman Ted Deutch (D) of Florida’s 19th district (21st District in 2012) to a “town hall” style get together on Thursday, August 23 at their West Palm Beach store.

The goal of this town hall meeting was to gain Congressman Deutchs’ support for HR 1639, also known as “Traditional Cigar Manufacturing and Small Business Preservations Act of 2011”.  You can read the details of this two page bill here.   The bill seeks to exempt the FDA’s control over premium hand rolled cigars by asserting the differences between hand rolled premium cigars and mass produced, mass marketed, tobacco products such as cigarettes or machine made, heavily processed, cigars like one would find at their local gas station.

A gathering of over twenty Smoke Inn customers were present, along with members of the stores staff and spend an hour explaining the differences  between the recreational nature of cigar smoking for the addict nature of cigarettes.  A long discussion continued as members customers explained to the congressman the differences between a $10 Padron and a $1 Philly and the fact that often times the “cigars” sold at gas stations are not only not true cigars but they are often not being smoked in the way intended (used for their wrapper to smoke marijuana).

Members of the meeting explained to the Congressman the social benefit of the local cigar store as a gathering place for men and women of all walks of life to gather and socialize regardless of race, religion, or affiliation.

To Congressman Deutchs’ credit he expressed understanding of the differences between premium cigars and the mass tobacco market and expressed a strong conviction that premium cigars should be considered in a different light.

Unfortunately, when it came time to put his money where is mouth was Congressman Deutch failed to support HR 1639 at the end of the town hall meeting.  He did state he was supportive of the concerns presented, but he would not commit until reading the bill.

Frankly, as a resident of his district, I find it incredibly outrageous that my Congressman would not have read a two page bill prior to meeting his constituents regarding said bill.  It could have bee read walking from  his car to the shop!  Mr. Congressman.  I have but one vote, and but one voice, but I, as well as thousands of other constituents of yours will be waiting to see if you put your money where your mouth is and support HR 1639.

The thoughts and opinions represented in this Editorial are mine and mine alone.  Toastedfoot.Com is not a political venue and is here to help our readers know more about their cigar choices.  Smoke Inn Cigars, SmokeInnCigars.Com, and or any and all  of our advertisers had no influence, input, or knowledge of this editorial prior to it’s publication.  @WillyStyl