No amount of rationalization will change the fact that The Times has helped companies that sell a deadly product.
Cigarette taxes save lives. It has been shown repeatedly that raising cigarette taxes gets people to quit smoking and fewer youth start. We can argue about how funds might be best used, but there is no "wrong" cigarette tax. You could shoot the entire tax into a black hole in space and still it would save lives.
Having the tax revenue go into the general fund puts the state in the position of relying on a product that kills. Can you not see the repugnance of that?