This year alone, cigarettes will kill over 420,000 Americans, and many more will suffer from cancerous, circulatory, and respiratory system diseases. These horrible illnesses were originally thought to have originated from cigarettes. Recently the Food and Drug Administration declared nicotine, the main chemical additive in cigarettes, addictive. This explains why smokers continue to use cigarettes even though smokers are aware of the health dangers with smoking. Although smokers make up the majority of people who suffer from cigarettes, they are not the only ones suffering from cigarette smoke.
UC San Francisco scientist and author Stanton Glantz estimates that the amount of second-hand smoke inhaled by the typical nonsmoker is equivalent to one cigarette smoked per day. Even that amount of cigarette smoke can damage a person’s heart. Some researchers have also concluded that smoking by pregnant women causes the deaths of over 5,000 babies and 115,000 miscarriages. For years cigarettes have been known to cause cancer, emphysema, and other illnesses. The deaths of many Americans this year will be due to cigarettes. As stated by Lonnie Bristow M. D.
of the American Medical Association at her speech to Indiana University, cigarettes still account for more preventable deaths than alcohol, illegal drugs, AIDS, suicide, transportation accidents, fires, and guns do combined. “We can no longer stand aside and watch fellow Americans die because they smoke cigarettes. ” Thousands of smokers try to rid themselves of cigarettes but can’t because of the addiction they develop, directly related to its chemical additive nicotine. If cigarettes were outlawed not only would we be saving millions of smokers, but also thousands of nonsmokers as well.
Opponents to the banning of cigarettes base their arguments on the possible negative impact that may come over America’s economy. Such arguments include statements that ex-smokers could live longer and receive greater Social Security and Medicare payments, and that tobacco farmers would lose a large piece of their revenue. The opponents second statement about tobacco farmers is misleading because farmers also sell their tobacco for cigars, and in addition to tobacco hundreds of varieties of other cash crops may also be planted.
The benefits of outlawing cigarettes greatly outnumber the disadvantages, for example, many scientists believe that there is a link between smoking and a shortened life span. Many studies suggest that the billions of dollars now spent on smoking related illnesses could create health care savings, and that smoking related outlawing cigarettes could reduce diseases, while companies could earn and added $8. 4 billion. Also, families could save money by not purchasing cigarettes, and accidental fires which cost millions of dollars, caused by cigarettes, would cease.
With mostly benefits attached to a restriction of cigarettes, the next logical step is to outlaw them. Although a complete ban on cigarettes currently remains far from reality, several organizations recently helped create a bill that could control cigarettes much in the same way the government now controls other drugs. One such organization, the Food and Drug Administration, headed by David Kesslar, drafted a major part, which would require many things.
First, manufacturers would have to disclose the 700 chemical additives in cigarettes. Second, the level of harmful chemical additives would be reduced or prohibited. Cigarette companies would be required to warn of the addictive nature of nicotine, restrict tobacco advertising and promotion, and control the level of nicotine cigarettes contain. As we near a complete ban on cigarettes, there will be many shortcomings, but eventually cigarette sales will be stopped.