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American Opinion: On a new federal tax on tanning salons

An excerpt from recent editorials in newspapers in the United States:

From The Associated Press

On a new federal tax

on tanning salons:

Some are calling the new tax on ultraviolet light tanning salons a "sin tax."

A more appropriate term, if indeed, the new national 10 percent tax on "tanning services" cuts down on the number of people who avail themselves of tanning beds in the odd belief that a precancerous glow is somehow the picture of health, would be an "SPF tax." This is a prudent surcharge that should be applauded.

The new tax, which takes effect July 1, was passed by Congress to help pay for health care reform. Patrons say they are being unfairly targeted. Their argument goes something like this: "The sun is free. The sun tans you. Tanning salons should not be


Well, Mother Nature can turn grape juice into wine all by itself, but governments tax wine. Mother Nature is responsible for tobacco, but governments tax cigarettes.

This tax penalizes vanity, one of the seven deadly sins, and may save some misguided folks from melanoma and other skin cancers. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said exposure to ultraviolet radiation increases the risk for skin cancer, causes premature aging, suppresses the immune system and can cause eye damage.

Besides which, tanning booth customers who don't want to pay the extra freight for indulging their folly can always lie out in the tax-free sun.

We'd suggest they use sunscreen.

-- Asbury Park (N.J.) Press