Although smoking is a proven killer, Americans waste hundreds of dollars
each year on tobacco products. Other drugs that are harmful, such as
crack or marijuana, are illegal in the United States. However, the use of
cigarettes, which kills millions worldwide annually, is perfectly legal.
If certain harmful substances are illegal, then cigarettes should not be
permitted either. Smoking has several harmful effects on the body.
Cigarettes cause eighty-five percent of lung cancer and are responsible
for thirty percent of all deaths resulting from cancer. (Bartecchi, 49)
People who have smoked for a significant period of time will have
noticeable problems breathing and will most likely be in poor health. One
out of four deaths of people thirty-five to sixty-four years old result
from smoking. On the average, every cigarette takes five and a half
minutes of life away from a smoker. (Bartecchi, 46) Although restrictions
have been placed on the use of cigarettes in public areas such as
restaurants and airplanes, the US has yet to place a ban on smoking.
government frequently inspects items sold to the American public.
Commercial products that may be dangerous such as food, cars, and toys
have been recalled in order for alterations. In the August 1995 issue of
consumer reports, twenty-four products were recalled because of possible
dangers to the consumer. These products included a car that may lose a
wheel while in motion, a hair dryer that poses a fire hazard, and cookies
that can cause an allergic reaction. (Consumer Reports, 500) Yet, the
sale of cigarettes, known to be unsafe, has never been prohibited by the
government. Why are cigarettes any different from other products sold in
the US. Cigarettes are not only harmful to users, but are also damaging
to all people in the vicinity...