The Dangers of Secondhand Smoke Causes Stricter Smoking Bans

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The Dangers of Secondhand Smoke Cause Stricter Smoking Bans
Kristen Johnson
Axia College of University of Phoenix
COM 125: Utilizing Information in College Writing
Harry Roedersheimer
June 24, 2007

Smoking is decreasing due to new legislations for public smoking bans. Studies show that environment tobacco smoke (ETS), or secondhand smoke is the cause of such strict anti-smoking laws. ETS can cause cancers, respiratory problems, pulmonary diseases, asthma, and cardiovascular diseases in non-smokers just as easily as in smokers. The Centers for Disease Control estimates that 45.1 million people in the United States are smokers. That does not tell how many Americans are exposed to secondhand smoke as a result of those smokers. Spouses and children who live with a smoker are exposed daily to harmful side stream smoke, which is the smoke that goes into the air between puffs off the end of the cigarette itself. This smoke contains all the chemicals of smoke that is inhaled by the smoker. The effects of secondhand smoke have been studied in some form since 1929, but findings were not made public until 1972 by the U.S. Surgeon General's report. Smoking has been in the spotlight for a long time and has cause of awareness, and now the hazards from secondhand smoke has led to smoking bans to be put into action across the United States. If only more could be done to assure safety for the non-smokers of the world.

The Dangers of Secondhand Smoke Cause Stricter Smoking Bans
Smoking in public is decreasing due to new legislations for public smoking bans. Secondhand smoke, also referred to as passive smoke or environmental tobacco smoke (ETS), has led to these smoking bans which are strongly suggested by the Surgeon General. "Clean air laws have been enacted to reduce harmful effects of ETS on non-smokers by restricting or banning smoking in designated public areas." (Levy & Friend, 2003) As many states are working on adapting to clean air laws, some states that do not have these laws have private businesses adopting the policy. Studies showing the dangers from smoking are prevalent in getting our nation to warrant such policies against smoking. With all this information, states should put stricter public smoking bans into affect to protect people from the hazards from cigarette smoke. "The purpose of clean indoor air laws is to restrict or ban the consumption of tobacco products, generally cigarettes, in designated public areas." (Levy & Friend, 2001) The U.S. Surgeon General's 1986 report helped push the bans through by providing evidence of the hazards from cigarette smoke on nonsmokers. According to the CDC these policies are also associated with lower cigarette consumption and could increase smoking cessation rates. These restrictions include smoking bans put into effect through laws, ordinances, and voluntary policies. Voluntary policies are the laws and regulations that are implemented by private owners of establishments. By local government, or by state legislations clean air laws can also be put into effect and make a difference by making public smoking in their states obsolete. The federal government is only involved in keeping bans during airline flights but has little involvement with other antismoking laws. With so many states adopting smoking bans how long until the federal government gets involved? The first state to adopt a clear air law was Minnesota in 1975. By 1999, the District of Columbia and the United States restricted smoking in some public areas. Thirty-three of those states and the District of Columbia had antismoking laws in restaurants, and 23 states and the District of Columbia had bans in workplaces. According to the U.S. Surgeon General's report secondhand smoke is a public health hazard. Ohio is the first tobacco producing state in the Midwest to go smoke-free. Violators of the new ban will receive a letter of warning on their first offence, and any violations after this will result in...
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