4th November 2016
Letter to the Next President
Dear Future President,
An estimated forty-one million adults aged eighteen and older in the United States smoke cigarettes, and on top of that number there are over eight million Americans that use smokeless tobacco. That means there are over forty-nine million American citizens putting themselves and the people around them in danger of disease and permanent damage to their body. Tobacco in any form is very harmful. The use of tobacco should be illegal in all fifty states because it harms people in so many different ways and no matter what way people are using it they are harming themselves.
Three in ten cancer deaths are caused by smoking nationwide. In her article ‘New Insight Into Tobacco’s Toll’ Karen Kaplan wrote “Cigarette smoking can be blamed for at least 167,133 cancer deaths in the U.S. in a single year.” That doesn’t even account for the other diseases and health problems it causes. Studies and research have found an entire list of the types of cancer that could be caused by smoking which include cancer of the lung, bronchus, trachea, oropharynx, esophagus, larynx, stomach, bladder, kidney, ureter, pancreas, cervix, colon, rectum, liver, mouth, throat, and it can also cause acute myeloid leukemia, which is a type of cancer that develops in the bone and bone marrow. Smoking also causes nearly one-third of the deaths due to coronary heart disease, or disease in the heart’s major blood vessel. It also causes chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (a lung disease that blocks the airway), diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Smoking does not only harm the people doing it. On the Centers for Disease Control website they wrote “Cigarette smoking kills more than 480,000 Americans each year, with more than 41,000 of these deaths from exposure to secondhand smoke.” But secondhand smoke doesn’t only affect the people who are around it, it can also harm your pets. On the website Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights they wrote, “Exposure to tobacco smoke has been associated with certain cancers in dogs and cats; allergies in dogs; and eye and skin diseases and respiratory problems in birds.” Secondhand smoke has been associated with lung cancer in birds, lymphoma and oral cancer in cats, and nasal cancer in dogs. Secondhand smoke isn’t the only way smoking can harm animals. Animals can also become ill by the ingestion of cigarette/cigar butts or chewing tobacco. The toxins in the cigarette butts can make the animal sick, or the nicotine could make them sick. By making tobacco illegal you can reduce the number of people and animals killed by the secondhand smoke and toxins emitted by cigarettes.
Although smokeless tobacco doesn’t produce the deaths caused by secondhand smoke, it is still extremely harmful to the people using it, so smokeless tobacco is not a good alternative. In the article ‘Smokeless Tobacco Is Harmful to Human Health’ the author wrote “A recent study by researchers at the University of Minnesota concluded that smokeless tobacco is not a safe substitute for smoking. It found that users of smokeless tobacco had a similar exposure to one of tobacco's most potent cancer-causing agents, known as NNK. If all forms of tobacco are illegal it will reduce the amount of cancer deaths in America by so much. According to the National Cancer Institute “Smokeless tobacco contains 28 cancer-causing agents, including formaldehyde (the same chemical used in embalming), butanol (an industrial solvent and alternative fuel), and polonium-210 and uranium-235 (both used in nuclear weapons).” These people believe that chewing tobacco is a safer alternative, but they are being fooled.
Making tobacco illegal does nothing except benefit the people. It can stop the adolescents and children from becoming addicted to tobacco and nicotine, it can save pets and people who are around it from being infected with diseases from secondhand smoke, and it can prevent all of the diseases in the people who smoke or chew tobacco. Making all forms of tobacco illegal can save so many people’s and animal’s lives and it will prevent other people from being harmed by the effects of tobacco in the future.
Works Cited Page
Brody, Jane E. “No Such Thing As a Healthy Smoker.” New York Times, 21 June 2016, p. D.7. SIRS Issues Researcher, sks.sirs.com
Kaplan, Karen. “New Insight into Tobacco's Toll.” Los Angeles Times, 30 Oct. 2016, p. A.15. SIRS Issues Researcher, sks.sirs.com.
“The NSDUH Report.” The NSDUH Report, 12 Apr. 2012, p. N.p
Physicians for a Smoke-Free Canada. "Tobacco Advertising Is Harmful to Public Health." Tobacco and Smoking, edited by Susan Hunnicutt, Greenhaven Press, 2009. Opposing Viewpoints. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, ic.galegroup.com/ic/ovic/ViewpointsDetailsPage/ViewpointsDetailsWindow?disableHighlighting=false&displayGroupName=Viewpoints&currPage=&scanId=&query=&prodId=OVIC&search_within_results=&p=OVIC&mode=view&catId=&limiter=&display-query=&displayGroups=&contentModules=&action=e&sortBy=&documentId=GALE%7CEJ3010170289&windowstate=normal&activityType=&failOverType=&commentary=&source=Bookmark&u=cort85574&jsid=f346298597ac3299b91e0ccb0bdef8fe. Accessed 3 Nov. 2016. Originally published as "Cigarette Marketing in Canada: More Ways to End Tobacco Advertising,"
Wire, Business. "Smokeless Tobacco Is Harmful to Human Health." Tobacco and Smoking, edited by Susan Hunnicutt, Greenhaven Press, 2009. Opposing Viewpoints. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, ic.galegroup.com/ic/ovic/ViewpointsDetailsPage/ViewpointsDetailsWindow?disableHighlighting=false&displayGroupName=Viewpoints&currPage=&scanId=&query=&prodId=OVIC&search_within_results=&p=OVIC&mode=view&catId=&limiter=&display-query=&displayGroups=&contentModules=&action=e&sortBy=&documentId=GALE%7CEJ3010170274&windowstate=normal&activityType=&failOverType=&commentary=&source=Bookmark&u=cort85574&jsid=5dc9134b78930631f83263d6209b5c86. Accessed 3 Nov. 2016. Originally published as "Dental Experts Blast Tobacco Companies for Expanding Smokeless Product Lines, Urge Congress to Pass Bills Giving FDA Oversight of Tobacco Products," Business Wire, 2008.
“Burden of Tobacco Use in the U.S.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 20 May 2016, www.cdc.gov/tobacco/campaign/tips/resources/data/cigarette-smoking-in-united-states.html
By ingestion of cigarette or cigar butts which contain toxins. “Smokefree Pets.” - No-Smoke.org, www.no-smoke.org/learnmore.php?id=623