Supervisor Shawn Nelson Promoting Cigars To Kill Heroes

R. Shawn Nelson, 4th District Supervisor

Michelle Wiebach of the Cal State Fullerton Daily Titan wrote yesterday about the participation of our favorite clueless Supervisor Shawn Nelson in a program to support American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. The name of the program however clouds an otherwise good idea with thick tobacco smoke.

The thick woody aroma of cigar smoke flows through the air on this breezy Sunday afternoon. Families and friends of United States Marines walk towards and gather near Vintage Cigars in Santa Ana in front of a row of waving American flags and portraits of loved ones.

The name of the event, “Cigars for Heroes,” can fool anyone. When I hear “cigars” I think of old men smoking in a lounge room with a glass of scotch in one hand and a fat, juicy cigar in the other.

This event is to remember fallen loved ones, celebrate troops and send them care packages to cheer them up.

These troops have been overseas on shifts that can last for over a year. Many of them look forward to receiving care packages of general toiletries and snacks, but those things are expected. Cigars? Now cigars are a treat.

“From the guys we talked to, when you get a box of cigars, you’re like a king for a week,” said Shawn Nelson, Orange County Supervisor.

Nelson blows out a puff of heavy smoke. “We can send them cigars. They get to enjoy one of the luxuries of life.”

“We’re sending them (troops) an Orange County flag so they can take a picture while they’re smoking their cigars,” said Steve Spernak, who coordinated the event.

The picture will then be sent back to family and friends in the states and will also be in Cigar Aficionado magazine.

The care packages will help the troops overseas feel less homesick and hopefully surprise them with their favorite indulgences.

“This is something special. You get a cigar, it’s handmade, they know it’s something special to them,” Nelson said. “It takes 45 minutes to an hour to smoke and it’s something to help them relax.”

Relax? How about die a slow painful death from lung cancer, cancer of the lips, mouth and throat or other tobacco caused disease?

I’m reminded on this bit from George Carlin; Warning, it’s not safe for work, but I ask you, what image pops into your head as you listen to Carlin?

US troops in Iraq and Afghanistan have been reported to smoke at twice the rate of other Americans. Even after leaving the service, many veterans continue to smoke as the prevalence of smoking among veterans has been reported to be 27% during 2003 to 2007, and military smoking is strongly associated with increased lifelong cigarette consumption. Such high levels of smoking have led to significant costs to the Department of Defense. The costs of smoking among US military health care system beneficiaries have been estimated to be more than $900 million per year in 1995, with $584 million in direct health care costs and $346 million in lost productivity among active duty personnel.

Shawn Nelson is active in his community and coaches youth football

So Fourth District Supervisor Shawn Nelson wants to support our troops by encouraging them to smoke. I can see his new campaign slogan already, “A Cigar in Every Pocket.” Brilliant Shawn, why don’t you just send the troops cyanide capsules instead? It would work faster and save the taxpayers a lot of money.

So much for Shawn Nelson’s image of being a positive role model for kids. Maybe his next mission will be to provide…

“Cigarettes for Children.”


  18 comments for “Supervisor Shawn Nelson Promoting Cigars To Kill Heroes

  1. wow
    August 31, 2010 at 1:37 pm

    Talk about a stretch!!!

    No wonder YOU are the laughing stock of Orange County!!!

    • August 31, 2010 at 2:25 pm

      Not a stretch at all; perhaps the supervisor could call on his friends in Congress who are Republicans to make sure our soliders get the healthcare they need when they come home with physical or mental diseases. And if it must be a care package, how about some decent food or better pay? Some of the families at of soliders from Pendleton stationed in Iraq need to go to a food bank; and Nelson wants to send cigars?

      As far as smoking goes, I think its a dirty habit and I don’t want to breathe anyone’s cigarette smoke. My dad was a smoker and I used to second hand smoke a pack a day as a kid.

  2. Claudio Gallegos
    August 31, 2010 at 3:31 pm


    Did you see how Tony Bushala/Joe Sipcowicz actually has the nerve to call US “testosterone challenged.” This from the same guy who talks so much smack on his blogs yet when he meets us face to face, he whimpers like a little wimp and needs Chris Thompson to shout in your face if you dare to challenge Tony to repeat to your face what he says on line.

    Same thing with Art Pedroza and Paul Lucas. Those two will never say to your face what they have said behind the safety of a computer screen. Sean Mill and Chris Thompson are the closest thing that gang has to someone with huevos. Art and Tony are nothing more than little chavalas.

    • August 31, 2010 at 5:56 pm

      Claudio — I don’t play a lot of attention to that blog. It should be called “Friends for Shawn Nelson’s Future.” But hat tip to Joe Sipowicz for pointing out a typo I fixed. I enjoyed Gustavo’s comment to but I’m not so sure about the laws regarding having Hustler Magazine in places like Iraq or Afghanistan; this isn’t a First Amendment in either nation.

  3. Quite Concerned
    August 31, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    Dan, I agree with you. My dad smoked Lucky Strikes somewhere around 9 pacs a day! This was one stupid idea on Nelson’s part!

    • August 31, 2010 at 5:57 pm

      My dad smoked Winston 100s. I’m actually ok with passing massive taxes on cigarettes, alcohol and bullets. It won’t restrict anyone from getting it but it will be expensive. And healthier too.

  4. August 31, 2010 at 4:11 pm

    Bring the troops home. Then no politician has send a soldier anything as a gesture about how much he/she cares. Bush II rolled the troops into Afghanistan first, Obama upped the anti by proposing and implementing a surge.

    Tell me, LibOC – and I hope the answer is yes – does this blog take a staunch anti-war position against Obama’s escalation? Use of drone attacks? etc

  5. August 31, 2010 at 4:18 pm

    Actually, no need. I did a search myself to find uncritical quotations of Obama’s speeches and reports about them (save for one very brief post of a critical response from a Democratic politician that generated no discussion)

    You know what kills soldiers quicker than cigars? War and occupation!

    U.S. out of Afghanistan!

    • August 31, 2010 at 6:04 pm

      I believe the campaign in Afghanistan has a deadline; the deadline for getting out of Iraq is today. There is still some work to finish in Afghanistan. And note the cost of the war in blood and treasure is not on the books; Republicans whine about the stimulus. How’s that war economy working? And still no Osama bin Laden. Obama inheireted these wars and is drawing them down to get us out.

      Gabriel — there was a NY Times editorial last week about the high number of military tribunals/trials of prisoners from Gitmo being tossed due to enhanced interrogation techniques (torture). So much for acting like Jack Bauer.

      • August 31, 2010 at 6:37 pm

        He’s not drawing down the Afghan war. Sending tens of thousands of troops is ramping it up. There’s a big ol’ plank missing in that assessment! Five more U.S. troops were killed today and you’re blogging about cigars!

        I’ve opposed the war in Afghanistan since day one. Dissident Malalai Joya – the bravest woman in Afghanistan (BBC)- has visited OC numerous times (including Irvine) but you wouldn’t know it by reading this blog. She is a defiant voice and staunchly against the occupation (all occupation’s save for the settler variation have withdraw dates on the horizon – that’s of little comfort to occupied peoples)

        Look, I don’t support Shawn Nelson politically. The 4Fers have known that since after the first time they posted something I wrote about Sidhu. I’m sitting out the supe election in November – voto en blanco, NOTA – none of the above. Find better things to critique about the guy, and pluck the beam from your own party’s eye.

        • August 31, 2010 at 8:36 pm

          That’s temporary and you know it. We’re out of Afghanistan in July 2011..he’sonly ramping it up because that’s where the fornt lines are against Al Qaeda.

          • September 1, 2010 at 7:46 am

            Intelligence estimates place the number of AQ operatives in Afghanistan between 50-100. You should know that, but I won’t assume as much.

            Iraq is still occupied. The Afghan war is heating up as we speak. Just because a President designates a timetable, doesn’t mean it won’t be met, or that occupation ends with it.

            • September 1, 2010 at 7:47 am

              Doesn’t mean it WILL be met, rather.
              Take for example, the closing of GITMO as promised by the President.

  6. jose s.
    September 2, 2010 at 9:41 am

    hey nambla cheminowski, get real. i’m sure theres a lot of our soldiers who would love to smoke a cigar over there. you saying he’s trying to kill them is just stupid.

  7. I'm bored
    September 2, 2010 at 1:00 pm

    While they are at it, they should tax the hell of out people who opt to get gastric bypass surgery rather than make an attempt to lose weight via diet and exercise.

  8. Dan Chmielewski
    September 2, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    Bored — they do; the surgery helps you live longer so you can pay more taxes.

    And you have no idea how much discipline is required to maintain the program post-gastric bypass surgery. My diet is very strict. There are foods I simply can’t eat any longer and I need to measure everything and eat very slowly. I also get a lot more exercise these days and enjoy exercising (I often ran sprints with my girl’s basketball team).

    I’d invite you to come to the group therapy sessions held Monday nights at Orange Coast Memorial in Fountain Valley to meet the people who have had the surgery and the people who’ve elected to have the surgery, but frankly I think you have more of a problem with me personally than you do with the life choices I’ve made. And since you asked, I was a yo-you dieter and my weight would go up and down. I elected to have the gastric bypass to prevent sleep apnea and high blood pressure. And, since you’re hiding behind an anonymous handle, allow me to call you a coward.

  9. I'm bored
    September 3, 2010 at 11:39 am

    You can call me what you want, Bypass Dan. But here’s something to chew on and swallow if your stomach has the room to digest it.

    What’s more cowardly? Someone calling you out on your BS and exposing you for the hypocrite that you are or someone who claims to be a “liberal” and marches blindly to the drum of whatever the “leadership” says? Like Gabriel said, why don’t your focus your outrage on why we are still in the Middle East instead of what Shawn Nelson is sending to our troops. Or are you Orange County’s version of John Kerry? You were against the war before you were for it because Herr Obama and the “leadership” said it was vital to continue this stupid policy? Where were you to ask for an end to FISA, the Patriot Act and all of the other post 9/11 crap that has turned our society into a surveillance state? Oh wait, you’re must be for that because you like to stalk people near their homes and online!

    And you have the gall to call yourself a liberal. That’s about as funny as Glenn Beck calling himself a libertarian. Only difference is that he has been very successful into duping a lot of saps into believing that he is. It’s the petty crap that you focus on that make you and your Long Beach co-hort the laughing stock of the blogosphere. You also seem intent in taking down the DPOC with you and the many people that are really trying to WORK for change here in OC. And when I talk about work, I actually mean rolling up your sleeves and getting dirty with your feet on the ground…and no, I’m not talking about the dust that you got on your fingers from cutting and pasting other people’s analysis with your mouse. But you wouldn’t know how to do that because it’s a lot easier to play cyber QB behind a keyboard in that master planned fantasyland, aka Northwood, that you and your family live in.

    Instead of taking the stick out of your eye, maybe we should call a proctologist and have them extract the stick out of your hind quarters. Getting your Underroos in a bunch over cigars is petty compared to the overall bigg picture. But I guess you’d rather let the noise machine that you speak of control the debate. And who is the real pathetic noise machine here? All you need to do is take one look in the mirror. You brought this one on yourself and there is no one to blame but yourself.

Comments are closed.