Tag Archives: trafficking

Tobacco companies get rich on child labor

Children working Tobacco Fields – Source: Human Rights Watch

Children working Tobacco Fields – Source: Human Rights Watch

We talk so much about saving the future for the young from our selfish excesses.

We should therefore be stopping tobacco companies right now in Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky and Tennessee, from using child labor as young as 7 years old as field hands to pick poisonous tobacco leaves under hazardous working conditions.

We obviously need to pass a law to prohibit child labor from picking tobacco younger than eighteen and tobacco companies should refuse tobacco from suppliers who use child labor – and are paid less than the minimum wage – no exceptions.

We probably all recall when the great leaf tobacco companies were immortalized, raising their right hands, at a widely publicized congressional hearing in 1994, solemnly swearing that nicotine was not addictive.  (See the sworn corporate denials on line)  These tobacco corporations confessed four years later at another set of congressional hearings that tobacco was indeed addictive.

Michael Moore, the Mississippi Attorney General, who was the lead negotiator in the settlement with the tobacco companies said these tobacco companies were “the most corrupt and evil corporate animal that has ever been created in this country’s history.  They sell the drug, they make a drug, and they sell it knowing that it’s addictive.  They market it to our children, who they know will become addicts and they know that they will die from … tobacco related disease[s].” Continue reading