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Letter: North Dakota should raise tobacco prices

My family and I have been really happy with North Dakota’s smoke-free indoor workplace law that passed in 2012. As a mother of young children, I feel very fortunate that kids today will have decreased exposure to secondhand smoke.

As my kids get older, I worry about their exposure to advertising for tobacco products. I find it appalling that tobacco companies target their advertising to kids, including enticing flavored tobacco products, and colorful packaging.

We know that as we increase the price of tobacco, fewer kids start smoking and more smokers make the decision to quit. With so many lives at stake, my question is this: Why don’t we make cigarettes more expensive so people – especially kids and young adults – can really start to see how much their habits cost them?

When it hits us in the pocketbook, we start looking for a way to quit an addiction or decide to never start in the first place. I’ve heard that North Dakota is one of the cheapest places to buy cigarettes. There’s something wrong with that, and I think it is time for action.

Brenda Jo Gillund, West Fargo