Bob Schieffer on CVS and cigarettes

Justin Sullivan, Getty Images

As a journalist, I don't endorse political candidates, nor do I contribute to political campaigns. I wouldn't want to -- and besides, CBS, wisely, doesn't allow it.

Nor are we allowed to endorse products. That's another good rule.

So what follows is neither a paid commercial nor an endorsement.

Rather it is just a simple "thank you" to the drug store chain CVS for announcing it will no longer sell tobacco products -- that's a thank you from a survivor of bladder cancer who still takes daily medication to control two other cancer-related, incurable diseases: ulcerative colitis and diabetes.

I began chewing tobacco at age 16 because I was a ballplayer and that was part of the culture. But the heavy addiction continued long after my arm gave out.

Today, I consider myself lucky to be alive.

It's going to cost CVS $2 billion a year in revenue, but the company decided it could not promote itself as a health care provider if it continued to sell the product that is the number one cause of preventable disease and death, a product directly responsible for 480,000 deaths last year.

There was a lot more back-and-forth last week about Obamacare, but to me the heath news that really mattered came from CVS.

  • Bob Schieffer On Twitter»

    Bob Schieffer is CBS News' chief Washington correspondent and anchor of Face the Nation.

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