Menthol Cigarettes Face Ban by Biden Administration

( – In 2022, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services initiated a grant program worth some $30 million that sought to make narcotics use safer for functioning addicts. Instead of being about Narcan distribution as some might assume, the program put literal crack pipes into the hands of those with illicit substance abuse issues. The idea behind the program was that if addicts got clean drugs and paraphernalia from a known and trusted source, it would reduce the risk of overdose and bloodborne illness. These measures are called “harm reduction” and are not meant to be an alternative to rehabilitative treatment.

In spite of this seemingly liberal approach to dealing with the nation’s ongoing illegal drug crisis, the Biden administration appears to now have the tobacco industry in their sights. The Food and Drug Administration is in the final stages of a selective ban and if they have their way, both menthol cigarettes and certain flavored cigars will be done away with altogether.

According to reports, the FDA’s new rule proposal is only pending an “ok” from officials at the White House, who are reportedly in the process of reviewing it as of October 25th. Critics of the tobacco industry have been targeting the menthol variety of cigarettes for well over ten years.

Along with a host of health officials, they argue that a blanket ban on the flavor could potentially save many hundreds of thousands from early death, especially among those in the black community who smoke. Experts and activists alike claim that black Americans, who appear to smoke menthols in overwhelmingly higher numbers than other races, have been deliberately targeted with the flavor by unsavory industry executives.

According to data provided by the FDA, around 85% of nationwide black smokers say that menthols are their preferred flavor. In contrast, only 30% of whites who smoke say the same. Over a nearly 40-year period beginning in 1980, African Americans accounted for a full 40% of all menthol smoking-related excess deaths.

Data provided by the Centers for Disease Control showed that over one-third of U.S. cigarette sales in 2021 were from menthol-flavored varieties. The pending ban follows a 2009 congressional prohibition of flavored cigarettes.

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