Progymasmata Cigarettes Should Be Illegal in Today's Term Paper

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Cigarettes Should be Illegal

In today's modern world, we have discovered many things about the workings of our bodies which were know known just a few decades ago. The human genome has been mapped, making it possible to engineer plants, and design medications for specific diseases. The need for a balance between exercise, food intake, and the kind of foods has been clearly documented. Products which were glamorized just a few decades ago have been targeted for extinction by consumer groups. As medical data has accumulated, mountains of evidence demonstrate that these products, which once were considered a part of a socially elite lifestyle, are dangerous, if not deadly, to human life. One such product is the cigarette.

The production and use of cigarettes have been a part of the American culture since we discovered the plants with the help of Native Americans 400 years ago. Once the dried and shredded leaves were shipped to the home land in Europe, the tobacco business became big enterprise, and southern plantations, built in the backs of the poor and slaves, became a multi-national enterprise. Companies and fortunes were built trading tobacco products. In the early 20th century, as Hollywood discovered the power of mass media, actors and actresses were paid additional stipends to include the small white accessories in their films. When America saw the rich and famous sucking on cigarettes, demand for the products increased. At the time, nothing was known about the addictive nature of nicotine, or the cancerous tendencies of tobacco smoke. What continued to be important those who manufactured and sold tobacco products was that people like them, and purchased them at a significant profit.

But can a society which calls itself moral and just continue to exploit the desires of its citizens, and continue to make profit on a product which is harmful to those who use…

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But can a society which calls itself moral and just continue to exploit the desires of its citizens, and continue to make profit on a product which is harmful to those who use it? In the 1970's, the Ford Motor Company encumbered significant fines for producing the Ford Pinto automobile. Consumers discovered that in specific circumstances, the gas tank exploded, and causing serious harm to the car's passengers. In the late 20th century, Bridgestone Firestone was found legally liable for rollover accidents when their poorly designed tires fragmented, and failed prematurely. Warehouses are still filled with defective tires as the company struggles with the aftermath of the most expensive product recall in the country's history.

Shouldn't a product which kills people slowly, but just as surely as an exploding gas tank and a rollover accident, also be banned form the consumer marketplace? Shouldn't a government which regulates the age at which its members can drink and drive also set limits on dangerous products? In other industries, products have warnings, or are distributed only through certified professionals. The country agrees that other drugs, such as marijuana, are illegal because of the detrimental effects these products cause. Why won't the government and society apply the same standard to another deadly product, and outlaw its use as well?

History repeats itself when we don't learn from it, and the history of cigarette use is repeating itself in new generations. Cigarettes are no longer the choice of the rich and affluent. Rather the poor and lower class choose to use cigarettes. Today, just as in colonial times, the cigarettes make money for those who produce them, and create even more revenue for the government which taxes their sale and distribution. Just as the poor produced the products on plantations, and wealthy land owners amassed fortunes at their expense, today government and corporations amass fortunes of the poor who still chose to enjoy a dangerous, legal product. Again I ask, shouldn't a government which seeks to be just, and watch over the welfare of its citizens outlaw a proven dangerous product?

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