Warren gave me crap once for suggesting that Bill C-32, An Act to amend the Tobacco Act, which would prohibit the sale of flavoured tobacco products in Canada, was light-weight stuff in the grand scheme of Politics. Now, my favorite Tory Senator, Elaine McCoy, has expressed more substantive doubts over the legislation:
As to cigarillo consumption, specifically, Health Canada only has two years of data and therefore trend lines cannot be reliably discerned as yet. However, the latest survey clearly demonstrates that most Canadians who buy and consume flavoured tobacco products are of legal age to do so. The other incontrovertible fact that CTUMS reveals is that 12,100 fewer children smoked cigarillos in 2008 as compared to 2007. And although cigarillo consumption increased overall, the only age cohort which escalated its usage in this time period was young adults between the ages of 20 and 24.
On the other hand, I find myself in general agreement with this analysis from her comment section:
...not so much wrong as based on a hypothesis or two (for which they don't YET have data): that big tobacco MAY use ads to target young people, which would INCREASE smoking rates, and THUS to prevent this, the legislation is required.
I think these hypotheses are not completely unfounded; evidence LIKELY exists (I'm guessing here, not having looked into this) that sweet, fruity alcoholic drinks (fizzy drinks) had similar studies/issues raised about them.
The "precautionary principle" is likely hard at work here (where Health Canada is concerned).
So the real debate may be more about whether one feels the precaution is worth the curtailing of rights. I'm fine with it, myself.
Mind you, its still small-bore stuff.