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Raising age to buy tobacco would be costly — to individual liberty

All in One Smoke Shop in Chicago's Edgewater neighborhood has lost business since Chicago last year changed the tobacco buying age from 18 to 21. General manager Cody Rector talks on Sept. 25, 2017, about the change at the Edgewater shop. (Lou Foglia / Chicago Tribune)

Your recent editorial, “Kids and tobacco” (Jan. 2), might have set a new record for ridiculousness in its opinion concerning the raising of the minimum age to buy tobacco. Just because the citizens of Maryland allowed the legislature and governor to raise the age for alcohol consumption in 1982 does not mean it was a reasonable decision, just as raising the age for tobacco consumption now is unreasonable.

I look forward to your response to this very convincing counter argument: If citizens are considered mature enough at 18 to make the most important decision we have in our country — the casting of the vote — then why do you think they are not mature enough to buy (or not buy) alcohol? I would suggest that all 18-, 19- and 20-year-old voters band together and vote out of office all those politicians who support this change in the minimum age to buy tobacco and vote into office people who would lower the minimum age to buy anything to the minimum voting age.

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When will the legislators understand that they are not better at running other peoples' lives than the individuals are? Individual liberty is the foundation of the United States even if neither Maryland legislature nor The Baltimore Sun recognizes this fact.

David Griggs, Columbia

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