Harmful Effects of Smoking

Topics: Tobacco, Nicotine, Cigarette Pages: 12 (1940 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Every year thousands of people die because of lung cancer or other tobacco related

illnesses. Everyone in the world comes in contact with smoke from a cigarette at least

once in their lifetime, whether it is at a restaurant or at work. Millions of people are

addicted to smoking, and thousands more become addicted every year. Cigarettes and

other tobacco products are everywhere. Most of the addicted smokers started when they

were young (Roberts 18). The reason why people get addicted to any type of tobacco

product is because all tobacco products have nicotine in them, which is the addictive

ingredient (American Thoracic Society 22). Every time a person smokes a cigarette or

chews tobacco, that person ingests nicotine. I believe that the tobacco companies should

be liable for every tobacco-related death each year.

On the other hand, some people believe that everyone has a right to make their

own judgment about their life. My opponent, Rosalind Marimont argues drugs and

alcohol are more dangerous to society than tobacco (26). Second hand smoking is not a

danger to the health of the community (Marimont 26). There are health benefits for

people that do smoke tobacco (Marimont 27). So many people quit smoking each year, it

is so ridiculous to think that tobacco products are addicting argues Richard DeGrandpre

(39). The facts about tobacco and tobacco products have been shaded by the government

and government agencies to make smoking less acceptable and more inconvenient to

smokers and tobacco users Sullum argues (55). My opponents firmly believe that there

are no risks if a person starts smoking. As you will see, I will show extenuating facts that

disprove my opponents views on tobacco products.

My opponent states that smoking is not dangerous, however, I intend to

prove that smoking is dangerous not just to smokers, but to everyone as well. It is a

proven fact that smoking causes lung cancer and heart disease (American Thoracic Society

19). Every person that breathes the smoke of tobacco products is at risk for

tobacco-related illnesses. Even though smoking is not as publicized by the media as much

as illegal drugs, cigarettes are just as bad. Smoking cigarettes leads to the use of other

drugs that are more harmful to the person than cigarettes (Hall 22). If smoking was not

dangerous, then why is there a commercial on television telling the viewer that the tobacco

companies kill 1000 people everyday? The statistics on the number of people that die

each year in the United States from tobacco or tobacco-related illness is astonishing. Over

four hundred thousand people die each year from smoking (American Thoracic Society

19). Also, a person age twenty-five that is a heavy smoker has a life expectancy that is

twenty-five percent less than a person that does not smoke (American Thoracic Society

19). more For something that is not a hazard to people's health, they sure do account for

a lot of deaths that occur each year.

I do not see how my opponent can contend that secondhand smoke is not a heath

hazard to the rest of the community. Secondhand smoke affects everyone because it goes

into the air. We (nonsmokers) can not protect ourselves from other people's cigarette

smoke (Garrision 44). Everyone breaths, therefore, if you are sitting next to someone that

smokes, you are probably getting a some smoke in your lungs. This happens because

when smoke goes into the air, it disappears into the oxygen. As you breath in oxygen, you

also breath in a minimal amount of the cigarette smoke. In 1986, a surgeon general's

report was released that stated smoke from tobacco products can cause cancer in healthy

non-smoking adults (Garrision 45). It has been proven that secondhand smoke can cause

lung cancer and other tobacco-related illnesses in people that do not smoke (Garrision 45)....
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