Op-Ed: Cigarettes Should Be Illegal

Jack Cavailoi and Justin Bifolco

Have you ever been out in a public area and have someone blow a cloud of smoke directly in your face? Have you ever been in your car driving next to someone and see them throw their cigarette out of their window, littering the street? We’ve all been there and we know how gross, uncomfortable, and rude it is. Not to mention how unhealthy and dangerous this is.

Cigarettes are harmful to the people who smoke them, the people around them breathing in the dirty air, and the environment. Yet people continue to go through multiple packs a week, disregarding all the health concerns that come with smoking. The main  reason people continue to smoke is because they are addicted. Nicotine is a chemical, among thousands of others added to the cigarettes, that is responsible for the user becoming dependent on and constantly craving cigarettes. If cigarettes were banned, the users would no longer have the opportunity to continue buying them to satisfy their urge. In a sense, people are paying money to shorten their lifespan. Overtime, the users would no longer be addicted to them and unable to buy them, so even if they wanted to, they couldn’t. One major downfall to smoking is the risk of cancer, a deadly disease that smoking cigarettes is known to cause, specifically  lung cancer which has been more common recently due to addicted smokers.

I know many people will claim that the business side of cigarettes is very beneficial to the economy. Every pack of cigarettes sold brings in revenue for the government, due to the  expensive tax that is placed on cigarettes. This may be true, but people’s lives are at risk. If they were banned, people would be healthier, and have more money in their pockets to invest in businesses, purchase goods needed for their lives, and overall benefit the economy in a more positive way, without all that smoke. In addition, people would be significantly more productive at work. Every time someone takes a smoke break, they are taking away time from their job and sacrificing pay. If you take four-fifteen minute smoke breaks, you are sacrificing an hour out of your salary just to smoke. This hurts your bank account and your health. The smokers personal health is not the only thing that could be affected too. Smoking during pregnancy could affect the baby’s health. Premature birth and miscarriage can occur if people smoke around somebody who’s pregnant, or if the carrier of the baby smokes.

Overall,  banning cigarettes  would be beneficial for billions of people for many reasons. The environment becomes healthier and people become more focused and stable, mentally and financially. Less disease would occur which in turn, means less of a worry for those billions of people. It is clear that cigarettes should be illegal due to all the risks they carry with them. Let’s help the health of billions of people one step at a time.