Note: Sample below may appear distorted but all corresponding word document files contain proper formattingExcerpt from Term Paper:
Banning Smoking in Public Places
In the present age of information explosion, almost everyone is aware of the harmful effects of smoking although the leading tobacco manufacturers have managed to confuse the issue through lobbying cleverly conducted media campaigns. That a large number of people still choose to smoke and inflict harm on their own bodies is partially attributable to the power of business corporations and the effectiveness of advertisement but highly unfortunate. What is more unfortunate, and in my opinion, absolutely unacceptable is the harm caused by smokers to the rest of us by smoking in public places. It is a practice that cannot be condoned by any stretch of the imagination. In this position paper, I shall argue why smoking should be banned in all public areas by outlining the health hazards of smoking and second hand smoke. The major arguments against such a ban shall also be discussed.
The Health Hazards of Smoking
Tobacco smoke contains a large number of chemicals in the form of particles and gases. The particles include toxins such as nicotine, tar, and benzene while the gases include harmful substances such as carbon monoxide, ammonia, formaldehyde, and hydrogen cyanide. Scientists have identified as many as 60 substances in tobacco smoke which cause cancer. Small wonder that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the U.S.A. has classified tobacco smoke as a carcinogen that ranks alongside poisonous substances like asbestos and arsenic. ("Q& A: Passive Smoking," 2004)
The harmful effects of smoking have long been recognized by doctors. Forty years ago, the U.S. Surgeon General released his first report on the health hazards of smoking. It announced the results of medical research available at the time that held smoking responsible for the definite cause of at least three diseases -- cancer of the lungs, cancer of the larynx and chronic bronchitis. Subsequent research concluded that smoking causes a number of other afflictions as well, e.g., cancers of the bladder, esophagus, mouth and throat; coronary heart and cardiovascular diseases; and sudden infant death syndrome.
The latest report by the Surgeon General, released in September 2004
reveals that the health hazards of smoking are far greater than were previously thought. The list of diseases caused by the use of tobacco smoking have now been considerably expanded to include cancers of the kidneys, stomach, cervix, and pancreas as well as leukemia, cataracts, pneumonia, and gum disease. Smoking has also been linked to suppression of the immune system and an overall decline in general health, contributing to conditions such as hip fractures, complications from diabetes, increased wound infections following surgery, and various reproductive problems. The reason for such a wide-ranging effect of smoking is due to the fact that some of the carcinogens contained in cigarette smoke, such as nicotine, are readily transported into the blood stream through the lung surface as well as the gastrointestinal tract and have the ability to latch on to a receptor present on every cell in our body. Tobacco smoke thus has the potential to affect each and every organ and every cell of the human body. The economic and social cost of smoking, as reflected in the figures quoted in the report make depressing reading. According to the report, smoking kills an estimated 440,000 Americans each year. On average, men who smoke cut their lives short by 13.2 years, and female smokers lose 14.5 years. The economic toll exceeds $157 billion each year in the United States -- $75 billion in direct medical costs and $82 billion in lost productivity. Dr. Carmona, the Surgeon General summed up the findings of the report by remarking:
Since the 1964 surgeon general's report, more than 12 million people have died from smoking -- related illness. These include 4.1 million deaths from cancer, 5.5 million deaths from cardiovascular diseases, 2.1 million deaths from respiratory diseases, and 94,000 pre-natal deaths ... We've known for decades that smoking is bad for your health, but this [latest] report shows that it's even worse than we knew.
("The Health Consequences of Smoking," 2004)
How Do these Findings Relate to Passive Smoking?
In order to see how the above-mentioned ill-effects of smoking apply to second hand smoke, let us consider what 'passive smoking' actually is. In simple words, it is breathing in other people's cigarette smoke, which consists of "sidestream" smoke from the tip of a burning cigarette, and "mainstream" smoke that has been inhaled and then exhaled by the smoker. It has been estimated that sidestream smoke accounts for nearly 85% of the smoke in a room where smokers had been smoking. ("Q& A: Passive Smoking," 2004)
We find instances of passive smoking almost everywhere. It is estimated that about one-third of adults smoke in the United States. This means that about a similar percentage of American children are exposed to passive smoking in their homes. People visiting bars and restaurants, except in areas where smoking is banned breathe in a significant amount of tobacco smoke. One study found that in households where both parents smoke, young children have a 72% increased risk of respiratory illnesses and are more likely to be admitted to hospital for bronchitis and pneumonia in the first year of life.
The reason why 'second hand smoke' is almost as injurious as direct smoking is because the human blood has been shown to be very sensitive to even low doses of tobacco smoke, a fact reflected in the findings that even people who smoke occasionally and those who use 'low-tar' or 'light' cigarettes are as prone to health problems as the heavy or chain-smokers. Also the fact that the sidestream smoke which comes directly from cigarette constitutes the bulk of the smoke that passive smokers breathe in, makes second-hand smoke as deadly as the one inhaled by the smokers themselves. Hence it is only logical that the harmful effects of passive smoking should be comparable to that of direct smoking.
A recently released study by a team of researchers from St. George's Medical School and the Royal Free hospital in London which studied 4,792 men over 20 years found that exposure to passive smoking in the workplace and public places increase the risk of coronary heart disease by 50-60%. The results of the latest study are far more alarming than the findings of earlier studies that had indicated a 25-30% increased risk of heart disease due to passive smoking. This further underlines the hazards of exposure to second-hand smoke. ("Passive Smoke Risk Even Greater," 2004)
Other studies around the world such as a major review in 1998 by the British Government-appointed Scientific Committee on Tobacco and Health (SCOTH) came to a similar conclusion that passive smoking is a cause of lung cancer and heart disease in adult non-smokers, and a cause of respiratory disease, cot death, middle ear disease and asthmatic attacks in children. Some studies even suggest that passive smoking may affect children's mental development.
Despite these findings of major studies about the injurious effects of second hand smoke, pro-smoking lobbyists funded by major players in the tobacco industry continue to insist that such studies are unreliable and they have not proven conclusively that passive smoking is bad for health. They insist that there is insufficient scientific evidence to justify a total smoking ban in public places. The most they are willing to concede is that smoking and non-smoking areas may be ear-marked in public places and that good ventilation systems would eliminate any tobacco smoke that may cause annoyance to non-smokers.
The problem with this argument is that ventilation and non-smoking areas in public places just do not work. While ventilation may remove the apparent 'smokiness' in enclosed spaces it fails to remove the thousands of harmful chemicals present in smoke from such areas. After extensive tests of the air quality of public places having smoking and non-smoking areas, it was found that non-smoking areas offer little protection from second-hand smoke. At the very most ventilation reduced smoke levels by 50% and separate non-smoking rooms still retained high levels of cancer-causing chemicals. Hence, no-smoking areas can, at best, provide marginal reduction in the level of exposure of individuals to environmental tobacco smoke and are not the solution to the problem of passive smoking.
The Ethics of Smoking in Public Places
Some lobbyists for smoking argue that banning of smoking in public places is ethically wrong as it interferes with their freedom and fundamental rights. To my mind, such an argument is preposterous. Smoking in public places causes harm to others and even the strongest proponents of civil liberty and fundamental rights would not condone acts that harm others and force non-smokers to inhale smoke against their will. There is no doubt that an individual has a right to make the decision to smoke for him/herself, yet the smoker does not have the right to make that decision for anyone else; and once a smoker lights up in an indoor public place, the nonsmoker does not have a choice, and becomes an involuntary smoker
"Banning Smoking In Public Places" (2004, November 12) Retrieved November 29, 2016, from http://www.paperdue.com/essay/banning-smoking-in-public-places-59043
"Banning Smoking In Public Places" 12 November 2004. Web.29 November. 2016. <http://www.paperdue.com/essay/banning-smoking-in-public-places-59043>
"Banning Smoking In Public Places", 12 November 2004, Accessed.29 November. 2016, http://www.paperdue.com/essay/banning-smoking-in-public-places-59043
Banning Smoking in Public Places The debate on whether or not a nationwide federal smoking ban in all public places should be enacted has been going on for quite a while. In the U.S., most bans as well as restrictions in regard to cigarette smoking are a product of state laws. Although there are those who are convinced that public smoking should not be banned citing various reasons, numerous studies have
Smoking in Public Places Like many smokers, David W. Cowles started smoking in his teens. He wanted to look older, to appear more sophisticated, to fit in. Today, after 50 years of smoking, Cowles has finally stopped. Still, it seems he did not stop early enough. Shortly after, Cowles was diagnosed with lung cancer and emphysema. Surgeons removed the growth in his lungs but to this day, Cowles confesses to having
BANS ON SMOKING IN AMERICAN CITIES: NEW YORK CITY & LOS ANGELES Public Health Moving with unexpected swiftness, New York state lawmakers passed a sweeping anti-smoking measure that makes New York the third state after California and Delaware to ban smoking in all workplaces, including restaurants, bars, and hotels. Within hours of the New York bill's passage, Governor George E. Pataki signed the tough measure, which exempts only America-Indian-owned casinos, cigar bars
Banning Smoking in Restaurants in All States Through this study, the author aims to support a policy regarding ban on smoking in restaurants in all the 50 states of USA. The author is of the view that smoking should be banned in restaurants in all 50 states to lower the rate of second hand smoking related diseases in non-smokers Due to bad impacts on secondhand smoke, it has been banned on
Ban eliminated smoking in most public places. The idea is to protect non-smokers from second hand smoke. Smokers view this as a violation of their Constitutional rights. The question is whose rights take precedence. Controversy The mayor of Dallas supports the ban. Restaurants feel the ban will hurt business. Councilwoman says the ban does not go far enough. Restaurants try to get enforcement of the ban blocked. Smokers group tries to get ban's wording changed by using a petition. Health
smoking bans in public bars and restaurants. There are three references used for this paper. Today many states have placed a ban on smoking in public bars and public restaurants. It is important to look at the health issues of smoking and determine why these bans should be enforced throughout the country. Health Issues Smoking is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. Many smokers argue they should
And many people believe that in the long run, people will get used to dining without smoking, just as they did with flying on airlines without being allowed to light up (Frumkin pp). But not all New York restaurateurs are happy with the law, such as the owner of the Cellar Bar in Larchmont, New York and manager of the Willett House in Port Chester, New York, who claims of