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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (March 28, 2000)
Victory for the
Loss of tobacco control burns
And with a vfave of the Supreme Court’s hand, all anti
smoking legislation has vanished like a puff of smoke.
Last week, the Court ruled that the Clinton administration
did not have the authority to give the power of tobacco regula
tion to Food and Drug Administration.
This leaves the ball, as President Clinton has said, in
Congress’ court, which is exactly where we don’t want it to be.
Congress’ track record with smoking hasn’t been exem
The smoking industry has the largest lobbying group in
the nation. If there’s any group that has a large amount of
money to try to gamer support for its ideas, it’s big tobacco.
In 1996, the FDA reversed a decades-old policy to try to
It really boils
than enough \
to throw at
cracK down on tne sale ot cigarettes to
Cigarette smoking among minors
has not fallen, even with the prolifer
ation of smoking education, but
instead has continued to rise.
Americans have known for years
that smoking is hazardous, but
instead of cutting down, they light up
and puff away.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) tried
pushing regulation through the
Senate that would have increased tax
ation on cigarettes. The money raised
from taxes would have gone towards
antismoking campaigns and given the FDA authority to regu
McCain’s bill fell three votes short of the 60 needed to
overcome a filibuster. Some Republicans said later that an
increase in cigarette taxes would have violated their promise
not to impose any new taxes.
While the excuse was nice, it really boils down to money,
and big tobacco has more than enough to throw at Congress.
The FDA’s job is to make sure foods and drugs are regu
lated, to make sure they aren’t too hazardous or too dangerous.
And yet the Supreme Court has decided that the FDA does
not have the authority to regulate the amount of nicotine in
Isn’t tobacco a drug?
Don’t drugs fall under the authority of the FDA?
Tobacco legislation has been nothing but problematic, and
this doesn’t make things any easier.
It’s going to tike a lot of force to push any anti-smoking
bill through Congress, but it has to be done, and the challenge
has been issued for Congress to overcome its track record and
Otherwise all our hopes go up in smoke.
Josh Funk (editor) • JJ. Harder • Cliff Hicks • Samuel
McKewon • Dane Stickney • Kimberly Sweet • Lindsay
The Daily Nebraskan welcomes brief letters to the editor and
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Unsigned editorials are the opinions of the spring 2000 Daily
Nebraskan. They do not necessarily reflect the views of the
University of Nebraska-Lincoln, its employees, its student
body or the University of Nebraska Board of Regents. A col
umn is solely the opinion of its author. The Board of Regents
acts as publisher of the Daily Nebraskan; policy is set by the
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Letters to the
Stress, tension and hatred
Being in the military and accept
ing other’s sexual identity, I can
understand when people say that
homosexuals should have the right to
serve openly in our armed forces.
Although I wish it could be true, I
Unfortunately, in today’s society
not everybody accepts or even toler
ates the fact that some people are
homosexual. Although being homo
sexual doesn’t affect someone’s abil
ity to “blow shit up or kill people,” it
does have an effect on the people
around him or her. This is evident in
the homosexual-related killings that
have occurred in the military.
The military is about teamwork,
and if something compromises that,
the mission may not be accom
plished. Because gay soldiers gener
ally aren’t tolerated by the other sol
diers with whom they work, a lot of
stress, tension and hatred is created.
These things break down team cohe
siveness and the ability to complete
the mission. Ultimately the effective
ness of the military would break
down if homosexuals had the right to
serve. For now we must stick with the
“Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.
Take it or leave it
I’ve noticed recently a number of
letters and columns talking about
how the university should not be
spending money on new honors resi
dence halls and facilities. Instead it
should use the money to benefit the
In principle, considering the tax
payer-funded money that makes up
so much of the university’s budget,
that would be a fair assessment.
What most of the commentators
on this issue are either unaware of or
are ignoring is that the money being
used to build this building is a dona
tion from an alumnus. C. Ed
McVanney donated the money for
the entire J.D. Edwards Honors pro
gram to address what he saw a lack of
in universities in general and UNL in
particular. Part of that money was
earmarked specifically for a building
to be named after Mrs. Esther L.
UNL can either take the money
and use it the way the donor requires
or not get the money.
It may be elitist. It is not, howev
er, the university’s fault. The biggest
cost to the university is the green
space across from the Union. Sadly,
that would be a likely casualty no
matter how the university expands.
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