by Fargo Smick- London Office, Swain News Service
The Department of Health has placed a ban on cigarette machines throughout England in an attempt to protect children from easy access to tobacco products and to boost employment in the softening fake I.D. industry.
An estimated 35 million cigarettes are illegally purchased by minors every year and the numbers are on the rise. Labour Party spokesman Kenneth Pinchmouth says it was past due for affirmative action. “The little urchins are purchasing smokes faster than they can be put in the machines,” he explains. “It is illegal, and the cost of arresting, prosecuting and sending all of the tykes to prison has become ruinous for the economy. The jails are overfilled as it is.”
Dr. Heccuba Redcoat, Director of the Medical College of Filched Cadavers has a different perspective. “It’s a health issue. Children shouldn’t be smoking on top of their recommended four pints of bitters a day. It’s just not a healthy mix, especially while operating heavy machinery.”
Undercover Detective Cedrick Fong mixes with the gang members of Miss Chatterton's Bo Peep Pre-School to find hidden sources of illicit child tobacco.
It is estimated that 11% of all illegal cigarette purchases are attributed to vending machines. But what about the other 89%? What is the source of the vast majority of tobacco transactions? Inspector Jamison Kreely Lipmutton of Scotland Yard feels they have a lead on the problem.
“Approximately 3% we know are purchased on schoolyard playgrounds, during recess, between classes, and we have undercover operatives at this very moment infiltrating these areas,” he explains. “A good percentage come from kid pranksterism. You know, truck hijackings and overseas smuggling. The rest are supplied by those whom we have heard referred to on the streets as “parents”. Talk on the streets is that we are hearing them blamed for everything lately and we have to find out what this emerging underworld element is. That’s where we’re focusing our energies. To crack this criminal organization.”
Recent events have proven that Inspector Lipmutton is a man of his word, as several organized Parent-Teacher meetings have been raided and dozens of the alleged “mums” and “dads” have been detained for extended questioning. Parliament has made public pronouncements on the subject as well. “We don’t know who these people think they are trying to disrupt our way of life, but I vow to put a stop to it,” declared Conservative Party Minister Sir Burnstead Trillbog Pipps last Thursday at Kippy’s Fish ‘N’ Chips Stand in Leicester.
According to Sir Pipps, outlawing tobacco machines isn’t going far enough to ensure the safety of minors. “I am moving for legislation to ban parents as well. It appears to me as if these people have had too many opportunities already to damage the minds of our youth.”
Labour Party Minister Landrau Cribbins-Mite looks at the situation with a more economic perspective. Explains the Minister, “We’re hurting for jobs right now, and this machine ban will certainly boost the job market in the fake I.D. industry, which has been floundering, but this stimulus toward moving illegal transactions back to newsstands and so-called “convenience marts” is proof that with a little advance planning, government can address the problems of the people and actually create job markets where feasible. Perhaps you Yanks should take up the example.”
The Smattering Boar Pub owner Seamus Nobtater is unconvinced. “English Pubs have always held firm in the strict adherence to the 1942 “Ignore the Law ” Act . I believe you Americans have a similar national policy called What Happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas. If a wee tot wants to drag on a fag while downing a pint, it ain’t my business,” he says.
Outraged ACLU advocate Hy Azzakyte vows to investigate the situation across the Atlantic. “I’ll be damned if I’ll sit silently and allow any British child to drag around anyone based on their sexual preference,” he exclaimed. “Who do those people think they are making up their own rules in their own country? It’s entirely Un-American!”