One Brave Tobacconist Fights Insanity in Canada


See this picture?


It is illegal for a tobacconist or smoke shop in Canada to openly display their products. How blastedly insane is that? This is the epitome of stupidity.

Tobacco store owner gearing up for another legal fight

A tobacco seller in Kentville, N.S., is gearing up for another legal fight with the provincial government over its law on displaying tobacco products.

Bob Gee, who has owned Mader’s Tobacco Store for more than 30 years, has refused to comply with a law that requires him to cover up or hide his cigars, cigarettes and pipe tobacco from public view.

In May 2008, Gee was charged under the province’s anti-smoking law with one count of storing tobacco products and another of improper display.

Gee, who said the law violates his charter rights guaranteeing on freedom of expression, was set to go to trial on April 1. However, the Crown attorney for the province requested a stay of the charges against him.

Since then, the provincial government has amended the law, which still requires store owners to keep tobacco products hidden from public, but now allows for them to display their products in a catalogue.

Gee said he wasn’t impressed with both the stay of charges and the rewording of the law.

"I went to court to face the charges and then they’re using the system and whatnot to hide behind."

Now a ‘waiting game,’ store owner says

Gee has already received two warnings from a government inspector to once again, cover up his tobacco products.

"We had a good warm discussion on the first visit that we got the 30-day verbal warning," Gee told CBC News on Monday. "I guess the talk is over and it’s just the waiting game."

A second written warning Gee received expires in early June.

Gee said the amended law still violates his right to freedom of expression, so he intends to keep his tobacco in full view behind the counter. He said he hopes the provincial government moves quickly if it intends to charge him.

"We went to court to get closure and I would hope that happens sooner rather than later," Gee said. "I’m not going away and I’m not giving up."

The fine for violating the anti-smoking law is $2,000 for the first offence. A second conviction carries a maximum fine of $5,000, and the fine goes to $10,000 for a third conviction.

Pipes Magazine applauds Bob Gee for his courage to stand up to one of the stupidest illogical laws ever implemented.

6 Responses

  • Only been to Canada once, about 20 yrs. ago
    Odd thing is the hookers openly display their goods for rent in Young St. Toronto
    Thing was it was the ugliest hookers I ever saw, they should have been arrested for littering the sidewalk. They mostly looked like junkie / AIDS bags
    Yet a man cant make an honest living selling tobacco