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Stogie Contest: What Do Cigar Rights Mean to You?

24 Nov 2008

In this week of giving thanks, is pleased to announce our “What Do Cigar Rights Mean to You?” contest. Simply leave a comment answering that simple question, and you may be selected to receive the Ultimate Rocky Patel Cigar Rights Sampler. Pictured below, it features a dozen of Rocky’s finest cigars, three punch cutters, and Rocky’s new five-torch Diplomat table lighter.

Included are two of the difficult to find and highly-rated Rocky Patel Decade Torpedoes, plus two ITC 10th Anniversary Torpedoes, two Olde World Reserve Corojo Robustos, two Nording Robustos, two Java Maduro Wafes, and two of the brand new Rocky Patel Cameroon Especial Toros, all generously provided by the Duque Cigar Company.

Duque Cigar Company owner Thomas Hunter was kind enough to sponsor this contest to highlight the importance of protecting cigar rights and of the important work being done by groups like Cigar Rights of America. Describing what Cigar Rights mean to him, Hunter says:

“As the owner of a very small retail, mail order, and online cigar shop, cigar rights mean life or death for my livelihood. But as an aficionado of the hobby of cigars, they mean much more than that. For me, the hobby is a lifestyle going all the way back to watching my grandfather light a cigar on the back porch or remembering that every time my dad would bend over, a cigar would fall out of his shirt pocket. To think that we as Americans claim we are a county of rights, liberty, and freedom, it makes me sick to my stomach to think that there may be a day when I can’t smoke a cigar with my son to celebrate the birth of a grandchild.”

For your chance at the fantastic prize, leave a comment giving us your answer to the question, “What do cigar rights mean to you?” (We aren’t looking for an essay on the subject; one to three sentences will do nicely.)

In December, our esteemed panel of judges will select one top response to receive the grand prize. Just follow these rules for a chance at winning: You must be 21 or older to win. One entry per person. You must live in the continental U.S. Use a valid email so we can contact you if you win. Many thanks to the Duque Cigar Company for sponsoring the contest, and good luck!

The Stogie Guys

photo credit: Stogie Guys

47 Responses to “Stogie Contest: What Do Cigar Rights Mean to You?”

  1. Padronnie Monday, November 24, 2008 at 5:23 am #

    To me cigar rights can be summed up in one word: Freedom.

  2. Wine Guy Monday, November 24, 2008 at 5:46 am #

    Cigar Rights include the right to gather with friends and acquaintances to talk of life, the world, and anything n between while enjoying the mutual meditation of a cigar together without the fear of arrest or being ticketed as a violator. It means going to a cigar shop, choosing a cigar to smoke, and sitting there to enjoy. It means being able to sit outside on a nice day where I live to enjoy my hobby without being evicted for breaking "No Smoking" rules. Cigar Rights means that we cigar smokers will not be made into a harried class of citizens!

  3. morefifemusicanyone Monday, November 24, 2008 at 6:13 am #

    Cigar Rights give us the right to reminisce on smoke filled rooms, long nights of conversation, and a reverie tempered by good spirits. These rights ensure that our children and grandchildren will look into the past with fondness and remember the smell of fine cigars on a warm summer night. Cigar Rights give us the opportunity to become part of this fine tradition.

  4. dmjones Monday, November 24, 2008 at 6:13 am #

    The right to light up a cigar and enjoy it in peace without being verbally molested by the anti-smoking Nazis. The right of a business to make decisions for themselves as to whether or not they will allow smoking in their establishment, whether they are a restaurant, bar, or cigar lounge.

  5. Tim Dennis Monday, November 24, 2008 at 6:25 am #

    Cigar Rights to me means that cigar smokers are free to have a location where we can get together and enjoy the luxury of a fine cigar – whether that location is another smoker's home, a neighborhood cigar shop or a fine cigar bar. However I think with Cigar Rights also come Cigar Responsibilities to respect that others may not share the same passion and we must respect that. By being flexible and allowing certain places (restaurants, etc.) to be smoke free then we'll have more understanding in keeping other places 'smoke friendly'.

  6. Jay LeDou Monday, November 24, 2008 at 8:04 am #

    Cigar rights to me means that I am able to enjoy a fully legal product without having unproportional taxes set against it.

    I tend to believe that people who enjoy cigars should keep others personal rights in mind, as we should not impose our lifestyle on them any more than they should on us.

  7. Jason Taylor Monday, November 24, 2008 at 8:23 am #

    For me cigar rights means the pleasure of enjoying a pastime without the hassles involved in today's society. There have been great men/women in our history who have enjoyed cigars. What would they think of today's laws?

  8. Josh Monday, November 24, 2008 at 9:11 am #

    To me cigar rights means the ability to make our own choices, not just about smoking a cigar, but being able to have the freedom to choose what we can do, who we talk to, what we can say, what we can believe in. Cigar rights are a microcosm of our rights as Americans, and what this country was founded upon. We live in the greatest country in the world because we CAN smoke cigars, and we CAN elect our officials, and we CAN make any choice we want – we just have to deal with the repercussions ourselves – good or bad. Slowly but surely our rights are being taken away in this regard, and now is the time when we need to organize and exercise our rights as Americans to fight unjust legislation, and continue to fight for our ability to make our own choices.

  9. Tony Monday, November 24, 2008 at 10:27 am #

    I agree with Padronnie. FREEDOM!!!! It seems like America is loosing it's "Land of the free" status.

  10. John Monday, November 24, 2008 at 10:39 am #

    As an avid smoker, cigar rights means the right to choose a smoking friendly establishment, the right to purchase cigars without unreasonable barriers, and the right to ask, "Do you mind if I smoke?"

    Converseley, cigar rights means the right of a business owner to decide if smoking is inappropriate, the right of government to take reasonable measures to keep tobacco products away from children, and the right to light up later if the alternative would be to ruin a companion's good time.

  11. JimScar Monday, November 24, 2008 at 11:10 am #

    Cigar Rights is about the freedom to choose what we do with our bodies. When the political party that claims to champion personal liberties instead abuses their power to essentially "outlaw" an activity that hurts no one, simply because they find it offensive, this tears at the very fabric of our country.

    I would just like to remind everyone that the SCHIP tax is rearing its ugly head again. Several prominent lawmakers have stated that ramming this flawed legislation through will be their first order of business in January, when there is no longer anyone in the White House that will veto it. We must band together again and let our elected officials hear our collective voice, twice as loud as before.

    The effects in the US will be small, a few thousand people will lose their jobs, several hundred small businesses will be forced to close. And SHAME! SHAME on these lawmakers for hiding behind children to achieve their personal objectives. If it passes, they will pat themselves on the back for saving lives and untold millions of dollars in health care costs – all without a shred of factual evidence. In Cuba, where it is reported that a high percentage of the population smokes long-filler cigars, many smoking constantly, there is no epidemic of cancer, asthma, emphysema, or any other ailment that has been linked to tobacco. “Truth” my a**.

    In Central America, South America, Mexico, Indonesia and Africa, however, 50,000 to 100,000 people will lose their jobs. Many of them are the primary or sole wage-earners for their households. This will bring economic devastation to struggling countries and give cause to 250,000 to 500,000 people to hate the US. With the security and economic concerns we are already facing, this will threaten our way of life in less than a year or two. And for any self proclaimed “world leader”, it is irresponsible and callously self-serving. Scisco Emptor

  12. Keith Monday, November 24, 2008 at 12:53 pm #

    To me the right to smoke a cigar is the same as the freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom to own firearms, etc. It is one of the rights that our forefathers fought and died for. Fought against a tyrannical government that was trying to limit their rights. We live under a government that is trying to limit the rights of those of us who enjoy a cigar. I'm afraid that the restriction of our Constitutional rights to enjoy a cigar is a bellwether of things to come!

  13. Greg D Monday, November 24, 2008 at 1:18 pm #

    To simply enjoy the love of the leaf without having to hide behind a dumpster like a common criminal. Since when did smoking become such a crime in this country?

  14. Don Monday, November 24, 2008 at 1:23 pm #

    That there is even a need to question Cigar Rights is a reflection of what happens to a country when it has run out of groups it can discriminate against but still needs an outlet for its instincts.

    It means that science can be distorted for whatever conclusions are needed and that the press is free to indulge in one-sided reporting.

    In short, it means I am living in a country that is different from what I was taught it was.

  15. Youseph Tanha Monday, November 24, 2008 at 1:51 pm #

    Cigar Rights represent a freedom we all as Americans should have and experience. To me mean the right is to relax and enjoy a days work well done with friends and family.

  16. oceanelect4 Monday, November 24, 2008 at 5:00 pm #

    my cigar rights are enjoyed each time i light up with friends and a beverage. it is a right as a person who has served this great country so we can enjoy. our rights are being taken away the non smoking crowd. stand up and fight for your rights and join with a group that is fighting for our rights.

  17. Beringer Monday, November 24, 2008 at 5:09 pm #

    A person's identity is formed and enriched by being part of a community – whether it be as a member of a guild, a church, or any number of associations. Communities serve as important buffers between the individual and the government. When a diverse group of individuals voluntarily gather to enjoy the camaraderie of cigar smoking, they also share a unique opportunity to find some common ground. To me, a lost right to smoke is a lost opportunity to connect with diverse people, from local brothers of the leaf, to the many artisan's hands through which the leaf first passed.

  18. John Monday, November 24, 2008 at 7:00 pm #

    To me, cigar rights are the right to enjoy a cigar and bond with my friends, but most importantly my dad, in a reasonable place. I agree that there are places where smoking violates other peoples rights, but I should be able to light up at the beach, outside at college, but most importantly my home. America was supposed to be about established balanced rights, not making sure no on gets offended by other people.

  19. Chris Tuesday, November 25, 2008 at 8:25 am #

    Cigar rights to me mean through good times and bad I can always light up a good cigar a think about my past, present, and futrue.

  20. Matt Violano Tuesday, November 25, 2008 at 8:37 am #

    The question restated: What do Cigar rights mean to you?


    They epitomize the foundation of which America began. Being able to sit on your porch in your favorite chair, on a beautiful Sunday afternoon, cigar in hand, watching the world pass you by. You smile and laugh to yourself thinking "It was all worth it, for this single moment."

    That my friends, is what cigar rights means to me.

  21. Mike K Tuesday, November 25, 2008 at 11:40 am #

    The ability to:

    1. Enjoy a cigar in an establishment that allows cigar smoking, without the interference of government.

    2. Buy a cigar without being hit with an industry and consumer crippling tax.

    3. Smoke in my home or on my property without the fear of big brother's watchful eye or prying neighbor's who are irrationally fearful that traces of smoke may encroach upon their property and give them cancer.

    And for businesses, it means the ability to make an honest living, selling a legal product, and having the right to permit people to smoke or not (so long as the choice is that of the owner and not the government).

  22. Bob McDuffee Tuesday, November 25, 2008 at 12:00 pm #

    Cigar rights a re one manifestation of our property rights on which the two things we enjoy most, freedom and independence, are based. Personal property rights enable businesses to decide for themselves if smoking is allowed and individuals to decide to smoke or not. Property rights ensure our right to enjoy the company of those we choose to associate with while enjoying a fine cigar.

  23. Fred Tuesday, November 25, 2008 at 1:35 pm #

    What do cigar rights mean to me…Well, it's the right to start off my Saturday by watching the ducks swim in my neighbors pool while I enjoy a good cup of coffee and a nice cigar…It's the right to sit out on my patio after a crappy day and enjoy a cigar for a an hour or so…It's the right to hang out with good friends and affords the opportunity to meet new ones.

    I'm relatively new to this hobby, but I've learned that smoking a cigar is not just about the SMOKING and it's certainly not the same as smoking a cigarette. A cigar requires attention. It requires you sit your butt down for at least an hour, relax and enjoy the experience that a good cigar can provide. As free Americans we have the right (and should continue to have the right) to do just that.

    Now I am also a believer that exercising this right should not infringe on another's right to breathe clean fresh air. Let's face it, not everyone is a fan of the aroma of a good cigar. I don't believe we require the right to light up in ALL public places, but we should be afforded the right to gather with like minded people who share the same interest in cigars whether the setting be our own private residence, the golf course, our local cigar shop or lounge, or any other place that provides ample separation of smokers and non-smokers.

  24. Marcus Wednesday, November 26, 2008 at 2:34 am #

    The smoking of cigars for many has been a special social event for friends and or family to spend a few precious and memorable times together. These are times not lost in the every day rat race we call life. This time we spend smoke a cigar either alone or with a close friend or family member is time we cherish as a reflection of ourselves and our close bonds with other. To take this away is to take away a part of who were are as men and women who enjoy a simple harmless and meaningful pleasure.

  25. Chris V Wednesday, November 26, 2008 at 5:43 am #

    It means kickin' in Ashby's door at work and lightin' up a stick sayin', "What?! Smoke break!" to anyone that's got a problem with it.

  26. Brian Wednesday, November 26, 2008 at 10:05 am #

    Our cigar rights mean so many things on so many levels. Our ability to live life as we please and do those things, including lighting up a fine cigar, that allow us to continue on the “pursuit of happiness.”

    For most of us, the time we take with a cigar, whether it be alone or among friends, is a time to reflect on the day, rid our minds of the bad, and reminisce and enjoy the things in our life that make us happy. It would be very sad if we were unable to do this.

  27. Rich C Thursday, November 27, 2008 at 9:16 pm #

    Cigar rights to mean that there will never be a day when I have to hide from the law to smoke a cigar at my leisure. It means that all the cigars I buy won't have to be under the table or taxed to the high heavens. It means that we can gather as brother's of the leaf at our local shop and share our passion for this extraordinary ritual and art. This idea is found in the most profound ways including our freedom of speech, our freedom of being and our freedom of thinking. We as the people of a country founded upon the ideals of freedom, can and will enjoy our hobby and passion of cigars

  28. sandos Friday, November 28, 2008 at 10:16 pm #

    Why does everyone pick on cigars? Jeez, get over it.

  29. Will Saturday, November 29, 2008 at 2:12 am #

    It means that I will always be able to hang out and enjoy a great time with my friends and family. Some of my fondest memories of the holidays were with a nice cigar in hand, discussing life, and look forward to the future. I hope for many more of these memories in the future.

  30. johnny Saturday, November 29, 2008 at 5:52 pm #

    Cigars mean two things for me: comradery and reflection. I enjoy cigars in the company of my friends while having a good time. But I’ve found one of the best uses for cigars are moments of solitary reflection, the silence and the smoke help me to really get introspective and think about things.

  31. JohnBKing Sunday, November 30, 2008 at 2:51 pm #

    For me, cigar rights are essentially the same- and as equally important- as any right bestowed to all American citizens. For over 200 years it has been known as: "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." Keep the flame burning.

  32. Stephen Gunsallus Sunday, November 30, 2008 at 5:10 pm #

    Picture this – Queen Elizabeth the First quaintly walking across the cloak of Sir Walter Raliegh flicking an inch of ash off her cigar,her new found hobby. Since then the Americas have enjoyed high patronage from Europe's nobility, merchants and craftsmen, and courtiers. Now the industry of tobacco upon which this great nation became wealthy is under attack. We have the self righteous to blame and an over-reactive medical community distributing fear among the populace about smoke, second hand at that. Laws are being made that are just too nonsensical with the thought that the general populace needs protection from what has now been labeled a health hazard. Large taxes are being proposed on the industry as another form of regulation with the eventual intent that it will be regulated out of existence. If you want to see your money go up in smoke, by the way, just look at the governments fiscal policy and spending. They have wasted more money with their nonsense than probably all the cigar smokers put together. We have lost the ability to set our own standards of what is fair and decent in our society and have been ambivalent about those we choose to safeguard those rights. There will always be someone around that wants to take the rights of someone away. Look at proposition 8 in CA for instance. The only way to keep your rights is to fight for them the best way you know how and to join with others who will fight for those same rights. A smoke-in at the Capitol Rotunda would be hilarious. It could happen!

  33. jake Sunday, November 30, 2008 at 8:21 pm #

    To me, cigar rights are the same as many other rights. The right to do what makes me happy, as long as I don't prevent others from pursuing their own brand of happiness. The right to light up in a location where other people wont be bothered, while at the same time respecting other persons right to not breathe smoke they don't wish to. To sum it up, cigar rights are all about respect. People respect my right to smoke, and I respect their right not to breathe my smoke.

  34. Todd Monday, December 1, 2008 at 3:15 pm #

    Cigar rights are about freedom of choice. As a citizen of the USA, every man/woman has the right to smoke a cigar if they so choose. If cigar smokers respect the rights of those who do not smoke, the non smoking public should respect the rights of cigar smokers.

  35. Paul Wednesday, December 3, 2008 at 7:40 pm #

    Ciagr rights are very simply about respect. We, as cigar smokers, deserve the respect that is given to other people with specific interests and hobbies. You may not want to partake yourself but you rarely hear anyone get berated and yelled at for rock climbing, playing paintball or sky diving. This respect, along with our cigar rights, is earned. We have a responsibility to be respectful to those around us as the have the same responsibility to us. It is up to each individual to prove that we can be trusted with the freedoms that we have been given and that we fight to maintain.

    Beyond that overly philosophical point these rights mean camaraderie. Once in a while (not often enough) a few friends and I have a day where we cancel everything else, get the day off from work and leave it all behind. this is both figurative and literal. We choose a vehicle, choose a destination and drive. Two things remain constant on all of these days. There will be good food (usually steak) and there will be good smokes. Those sticks left at the bottom of the humidor see the light of day.

  36. Elliot Friday, December 5, 2008 at 2:46 am #

    Individual legal or constitutional rights regarding the ability and authority to smoke a cigar in public places will vary depending on Country, Providence, or State of residence – so my view of Cigar Rights focuses not on the legal aspect of smoking but rather on the Rights one enjoys in the privacy of their own home, or wherever smoking is legally permitted.

    Cigar Rights are a set of qualities commonly accepted by cigar smokers most everywhere. In times of challenge and times of peace, the enjoyment of one of life’s simple pleasures can bring both friends and enemies together peaceably as I have found it is difficult to be agitated while calmly puffing on a stogie. Respect of one an other as humans, enjoying the moment and letting loose all of life’s worries are Rights enjoyed by cigar smokers. Pleasure taken from camaraderie is enhanced while enjoying a cigar with friends and is the perfect way to round out an evening. Cigar Rights provide individuals who enjoy cigars a chance to bond, form friendships, settle disputes, and enhance life in a non-threatening and fulfilling fashion. Without Cigar Rights the general quality of life enjoyed by those of us who use Cigars as a communal form of enjoyment would be greatly reduced. To me, Cigar rights are vital to the very piece of me that is an American, entrepreneur, adventurer, and steward of peaceful existence as the time I have to reflect on life while smoking gives me a vision of hope for the future and the ability to learn from mistakes made in the past.

  37. csbrewfisher Monday, December 8, 2008 at 9:16 am #

    I intend to fight for and defend our right to engage in an activity involving a legal substance, cigar smoking. It is our right and obligation as Brothers and Sisters of the Leaf to resist political oppression, to present ourselves to the unaware public in a winsome manner, to support the manufacturers and distributors of the products we love, and to combat the relentless legislative attack against our community with unenforceable laws and unfair and intolerable taxes. In this age of so-called "tolerance", it is our right to be tolerated as law-abiding citizens whose hobby promotes commerce and strengthens local economies.

  38. Tom Sunday, December 14, 2008 at 3:39 am #

    Cigar rights mean being able to sit back and enjoy a smoke at all the important moments in my life: graduation, the birth of my children, their graduation, and so forth. It means being able to make my own decisions about what's valuable in my life, and to a share a hobby I enjoy with the people that I love.

  39. myukaht Sunday, February 1, 2009 at 5:27 pm #

    Отлично написано, но как говорится, для точного представления нужно как минимум хотя бы три источника 🙂

  40. гpycтный Sunday, May 24, 2009 at 4:01 am #

    Да уж… Жизнь – как вождение велосипеда. Чтобы не упасть, ты должен двигаться.

  41. Руслан Thursday, June 18, 2009 at 10:46 pm #

    Да уж. Спасибо вам, что заставили задуматься 🙂

  42. Натан Saturday, December 12, 2009 at 7:00 am #

    С удовольствием читаю. Продолжайте писать обязательно. Андреич, Татарстан.

  43. кpacaвицaвocтoкa Saturday, January 16, 2010 at 8:52 pm #

    Прикольно. С нетерпением ждем новых сообщений по этому поводу 🙂

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