Puff of Death (Version 2.5) This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

A poor old man sits alone in a room, without any friends due to his terrible breath and yellow teeth. He has lung cancer and one of his kidneys has already malfunctioned. He coughs with quite some effort and takes his last breath as a white cigarette sucks his life and soul away.

   Cigarettes. Such is the name of the terrifying assassin, yet people are still willing to gamble with it and sacrifice their lives in the process. 6 million people die every year from smoking, the number one cause of preventable death in the U.S. That's a bigger number of deaths than those caused by human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries, and firearm-related incidents combined together! It is always a dreadful scene to see those related to the victims mourning at those somber funerals. Those families that lost their parents or children were crestfallen, as they think of it their fault that their family members could not be prevented from smoking nor their ultimate demise due to their actions. Even the victims’ friends were worried, as the families lose huge amounts of money as a result of the great expense of treating the sick at the hospital. Everyone should stop smoking, and more importantly, cigarette smoking should be banned, because it is hazardous for peoples' health as well as peoples' safety, it is also very expensive both to people and the U.S. economy, and most threateningly, cigarette butts heavily damage the environment.

      First of all, cigarettes contain more than seven thousand dangerous chemicals in it when burned, and at least 70 are known to cause cancer. A person’s overall health is diminished as a result of smoking. First-hand smokers get yellow teeth, skin, and fingernails from smoking too much. Some even lose their teeth from too much smoking. They are also known to get headaches, lung cancer and bad breath much more easily than normal people do. Furthermore, they can get heart attacks, and their kidney become unable to function. Other diseases, such as the cancers of the lung, esophagus, bladder, pancreas, and stomach, among other body organs, as well as acute myeloid leukemia, are all possible outcomes of smoking. Smoking can also cause stroke, nausea, uneasiness. Women in particular are greatly affected by the deadly effects of smoking, as they have the possible effects of obtaining Preterm (early) delivery, Stillbirth (death of the baby before birth), Low birth weight, Sudden infant death syndrome (known as SIDS or crib death) Ectopic pregnancy, and can even have Orofacial clefts in infants when pregnant. 

        Many arguers against the banning of smoking say that people have the freedom of choice, and that freedom is completely declined with the ban of smoke. This is very biased and does not view the other side in the least-- does allowing smoking allow this freedom of choice? At the first time of smoking, it may seem so--people can stop themselves once they see the terrible effects. But what about the people who don't know the harmful effects and are curious to know why people smoke? Immediately they will be swirled into a mess which they cannot clean up. Smoking not only weakens the human body, but it adds a terrible chemical called Dopamine into people´s brains that make them more addicted to smoking, so that smoking is incredibly addictive. This pleasure Dopamine gives is nearly impossible to put down--in fact, it is estimated that nearly 17 million Americans try to quit smoking each year, bur unfortunately, only about 1.3 million Americans are able to remain smoke free. This statistic displays that only 8 percent or so of smokers that manage to be successful in their action of quitting smoking. It can thus be concluded that 92% of people lose their freedom of choice, and what good is that? What good is the 8% who gain their freedom of choice? They will never smoke again anyways, and thus have already locked onto one choice and limited their freedom of choice themselves. The banning of smoke, although having 100% declined the freedom of choice, has no negative health benefits and helps people rather than harm them.

           To add on to the already-bad effects of cigarettes, smokers occasionally are smoking outside, forcing the people beside him or her breathe in smoke too. These people, known as second-hand smokers, when breathing in first-hand smokers smoke, their body system also get badly damaged by the chemicals within the air. They can obtain the same horrid effects that first-handers get, if only slightly lighter. Statics show that 53,800 people die every year from secondhand smoke exposure, telling us that even secondhand smoke is very hazardous. Moreover, in the United States, two out of five adults who don't smoke and half of children are exposed to secondhand smoke, and about 3,000 people who never smoked die from lung cancer due to secondhand smoke every year. And the smoking doesn't stop there. That's right--there exists third-hand smoking. Impossible? Far from it. Tobacco smoke can linger in the air for a long time after the smoking stops, and even remain on our clothes. Many dangerous chemicals can be formed from this third-hand smoking, such as carcinogens and heavy metals, like arsenic, lead, and cyanide. Sticky, highly toxic particulates, like nicotine, can cling to walls and ceilings. Not only that, these chemicals can re-emit back into the air and recombine to form harmful compounds.
       
        Smoking not only sucks out the life of everyone, it also steals the money from all kinds of people, as well as the government. Even just one pack a day can cumulate to the costly $2000 per year. Businesses also have to suffer from the loss of workers; in just one year California lost more than $8.5 billion due to lack of productivity. In addition, in 2004, this same state has also spent $9.6 billion in health care. Because of the massive harms and damage of cigarette smoking, people have to check every few months to make sure that their body is healthy, and if they are not, then they have to spend huge amounts of wasted money. People should really spend their money on something else better than smoking. Already, a few years ago, partial places in the USA have been banned of smoke--and a positive effect has spread across those places with smoke prohibited. A survey suggests more than 400,000 people quit smoking as a result of the smoking ban. Nearly two fifths (39%) of all smokers said the ban had helped keep them out of hospital. These statistics show that the banning of smoking helps, and unlike the prohibition of alcohol, there are more people that go along with the government rather than against it. The government should continue its command of banning smoke across the country and help everyone quit smoking.

        Likewise to the normal health hazards smoke causes, there is also the possibility of fire hazards. This killer’s loitering is quite deadly. There are more than 7,500 smoking-related house fires each year, leading to the statistic that smoking is the leading cause of house fires. These house fires have killed up to more than 1,000 people per year. Those who survived were largely injured, a numerous 3,000 people. Not to mention the fact that property loss alone is worth up to half a billion. That is not even concerning the big picture-- the human pain suffering in addition to health care costs up to a hefty $4 billion dollars. Not only so, cigarette butts still lighted on can easily start bush fires, as a study finds that hay within one-third of the trials catch on fire from cigarette butts. According to the National Fire Protection Association, about 12 percent of outside fire were caused by these cigarette butts. It remains evident that even if one does not care about their own health sickness, they should at least fear the possibility of fire hazards from the aftermath of smoking.

        As harmful all these impacts of smoking are, these do not match up to the most dangerous impact cigarette brings to the world. The most damaging and harmful indirect impact of smoking is definitely the negative changes the environment receives. For one, in order to dry tobacco, each year up to 600 million trees are destroyed to provide for tobacco. Forests are needed to prevent flood and droughts, they bring us fresher air and slow down the global warming and unhealthy air pollution brings. Not only can forests be harmed, other sea creatures can be harmed too, as they can accidentally eat down the cigarette and be negatively impacted much more than an average human smoker. These cigarettes, when thrown into the ocean, take 12 months to break down in fresh water--and an estimated five years in salt water. Keep in mind that there are nearly as much cigarettes not properly disposed of--as there are people in the world (7 billion!) which is more than 1.69 billion pounds of cigarette butts. Wildlife is destroyed as a result of these cigarette butts, and evidence even find that there are cigarettes even within the stomach of young birds, and sea turtles as well. Just merely in the state California, the government has to spend $41 million annually to compensate and be able to clean up.

         Overall, the world would be a much better place without cigarettes. The government should take action immediately and stop that puff of smoke from coming out of everybody’s mouth. They would be smoke-sick-free from the banning of smoke, their houses would be much safer, the economy of their family—and of the world-- would be more stabilized, and most importantly, the environment would be damaged much less. Without cigarettes, this mass murderer will finally be gotten rid of, and everyone will live a happier life.






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