Persuasive Against Smoking Term Paper
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If a driver ignored a road sign that said "Danger: Bridge Out!" and proceeded along the street, he would be labeled as an idiot by his community. If a fence had a sign on it that read, "Warning: Vicious Dogs" and some adventure-seeking teens climbed that fence, no one would be surprised when they had their legs torn off by a pack of pit bulls. However, every single year 400,000 Americans die from ignoring one of the most infamous warnings: The Surgeon General's warning on cigarette packages. Smoking cigarettes may seem to be a part of the definition of being an American-- everyone from the street punk rebels to the successful big business CEOs are automatically visualized with a cigarette or fat Cuban cigar hanging from their mouths. These smokers see themselves as a better person for the momentary pleasure they receive from these tobacco products, but fail to realize the heavy costs of smoking which includes damage to their own health and to the health of others, nicotine addiction, and large amounts of money down the drain to pay for these products
"There is evidence that many smokers are not fully aware of the high probability of disease and premature death that their choice en-tails," reports the World Bank Group. Cigarette products kill more people than AIDS, murder, suicide, fires, alcohol, and all illegal drugs combined, and smokers are admitted to hospitals twice as often as non-smokers. The 1982 Surgeon General's Report indicated that "Cigarette smoking is the major single cause of cancer mortality in the United States" and it remains today one of the most preventable causes of premature
death. It is common knowledge that smoking causes lung cancer (in fact the American Cancer Society claims that 87% of lung cancer cases can be linked to smoking), but it can also cause cancer of the larynx, oral cavity, pharynx, esophagus, bladder, pancreas, uterine cervix, kidney, stomach, and may even contribute to some leukemia. Many common illnesses other than cancer are also caused by tobacco, such as bronchitis and emphysema, and the severity of the common cold is greatly increased by exposure to cigarette smoke. The largest portion of cigarette-related mortalities are actually cardiovascular-related. The American Heart Association reports that one in five of every death related to cardiovascular problems is attributed to smoking. The risk of suffering from a heart attack is decreased by 50% a year after a person has quit smoking. Personal accounts of emphysema sufferers are absolutely heart-breaking. According to professionals, if a person with emphysema continues to smoke, they will soon not be able to work and will constantly have to use inhalers, they will need to use an oxygen tank, then a BIPAP machine at night, and finally a lung transplant would be necessary or the patient will die. Overall, if current trends continue, global mortality from tobacco use is expected to rise to 10 million deaths per year by 2025.
Many people will argue that it is a person's individual choice to abuse and kill their own bodies if they so choose to smoke. Sadly, the person who chooses to smoke isn't the only person affected. About 40,000 nonsmokers die each year from cardio-vascular disease because of exposure to tobacco smoke in the air around them. Middle ear infections, asthma, and bronchitis are prevalent among children who live with parental or other household…
Sources Used in Documents:
The American Cancer Society. Who Is At Risk? "Tobacco and Cancer." 2001. <http://www.cancer.org>
The American Heart Association. Publications and Resources. "Tobacco Smoke." <http://americanheart.org>
California Department of Health Services. Youth Media Network. "Effects of Secondhand Smoke." November 2001.
Emphysema Foundation For Our Right to Survive. Medical Info Pages. "About Smoking With Emphysema." January 2002. <http://www.emphysema.net/smokers.html>
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