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Why Smoking Should Be Illegal Essay

1086 words - 4 pages

Have you ever been sitting in a public place minding your own business when a smoker sits down next to you? The first thing they do is pull out the pack of cigarettes and the lighter then they fire it up. Now not only is their health compromised, but so is the health of everyone in the area. This along with other factors is why smoking should be illegal. People that don't smoke shouldn't, and people that do should quit.Research has shown that when you use cigarettes it can cause life threatening diseases as well as aggravating existing health conditions. A smoker has an increased risk of having a heart attack or stroke. The American Heart Association, in their online page entitled "Cigarette Smoking and Cardiovascular Diseases," ranks cigarette and tobacco smoke as being among "the six major independent risk factors for coronary heart disease" that an individual can "modify, treat or control." Not only is the smoker at risk, but so is everyone their smoke comes in contact with. Secondhand smoke is even more dangerous than the directly inhaled smoke. Some of the short-term effects include, eye irritation headache, nasal discomfort and sneezing, cough and sore throat, nausea and dizziness, increased heart rate and blood pressure, increased risk for people with heart disease (angina), asthma, and allergies. Long-term effects include reduced ability to take in and use oxygen, cancer of the lung, heart disease, stroke, childhood asthma and other breathing difficulties. Studies show wives of smokers have a 3.5 times greater chance of getting lung cancer from second hand smoke. In the U.S., about 50,000 people die each year from secondhand-smoke-related disease. Since 1964, there have been 12 million tobacco-related deaths in the U.S. Tobacco kills more Americans than auto accidents, homicide, AIDS, drugs and fires combined.Smoking is also a very costly addiction. In 2002, U.S. consumers spent about $88.2 billion on tobacco products. According to the Discovery Health cost of smoking calculator, if you smoke a pack (about 20 cigarettes) a day at about $3.86 per pack, you will spend $27.20 per week, $115.80 per month, or $1408.90 per year on cigarettes. According to every day, about 3,900 youth ages 12 to 17 try a cigarette for the first time. Every day, about 1,500 youth become daily smokers. If someone starts smoking at the age of 15 and smoke a pack a day until they are 60 years old, they will spend about $63,400.50 in their lifetime on cigarettes. The fact that cigarettes are so highly addictive increases the odds that someone will become a lifetime smoker. 63% of high school smokers say they want to quit. Tobacco smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals, many of which are toxic, mutagenic and carcinogenic. There are 8.5 million people sick with diseases caused by smoking. With the amount of money spent on treatment of these illnesses plus the amount spent on the cigarettes it's no wonder that according to figures provided by the US...

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