By the definition set forth in Title 18, chapter 1B, Section 229, tobacco is a toxic chemical. How would one go about getting it classified as one?

The definition states:

(1) Chemical weapon.-The term "chemical weapon" means the following, together or separately:

(A) A toxic chemical and its precursors, except where intended for a purpose not prohibited under this chapter as long as the type and quantity is consistent with such a purpose.

(B) A munition or device, specifically designed to cause death or other harm through toxic properties of those toxic chemicals specified in subparagraph (A), which would be released as a result of the employment of such munition or device.

(C) Any equipment specifically designed for use directly in connection with the employment of munitions or devices specified in subparagraph (B).

Does B not apply to tobacco given the following definition?

(8) Toxic chemical.-

(A) In general.-The term "toxic chemical" means any chemical which through its chemical action on life processes can cause death, temporary incapacitation or permanent harm to humans or animals. The term includes all such chemicals, regardless of their origin or of their method of production, and regardless of whether they are produced in facilities, in munitions or elsewhere.

(B) List of toxic chemicals.-Toxic chemicals which have been identified for the application of verification measures under Article VI of the Convention are listed in schedules contained in the Annex on Chemicals of the Chemical Weapons Convention.

It is well known that tobacco fits this definition of toxic chemical. The LD 50 of nicotine is similar to hydrogen cyanide which is already a schedule 3.

How do you go about scheduling a chemical?

  • It would help to quote the definition you claim applies, and it would help a lot to actually show tobacco meets that definition. – Nij Apr 7 '20 at 5:29
  • That's easy given the abundance of studies saying it's harmful. – Al G Johnston Apr 7 '20 at 13:51
  • You obviously haven't read the definition, then. Please quote it in full and show how it is not excluded under 7(A). – Nij Apr 7 '20 at 19:52
  • The US Code is organized by title and section numbers. I presume 229 is a section, but in order for anyone to be able to find the law you refer to, you need to give the title number as well. – Nate Eldredge Apr 7 '20 at 21:20
  • How does tobacco fall under 7a? – Al G Johnston Apr 8 '20 at 14:16

The procedure is simple. Congress can change the law by majority vote of both houses and concurrence of the president. If you want to include tobacco as a "chemical weapon" under that law, you simply explicitly change the wording of the term to explicitly include tobacco. The same applies to other toxic chemicals, such as household bleach, salt, any form of alcohol, sugar. From context it is clear that Congress did not intend tobacco, bleach or sugar to be included. The definition includes an exception: "except where intended for a purpose not prohibited under this chapter as long as the type and quantity is consistent with such a purpose". With that language in place, Twinkies and Camels are not chemical weapons. You may also need to erase the part defining peaceful purposes ("Any peaceful purpose related to an industrial, agricultural, research, medical, or pharmaceutical activity or other activity").

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