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By Rory Herts
Giving More Teeth to Anti-Smoking Laws?
Non-smokers are now inhaling less secondhand smoke. This development was reported by the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention. This is owed to the efforts of lawmakers to ban smoking in specific public areas. However, there is still a need to strengthen local and international laws against cigarette smoking. Public awareness about the facts about smoking helps too.
The self-destructive habit of millions of Americans had officials scurrying to pass anti-smoking laws. The Surgeon General is getting full support from governments worldwide. The World Health Organization (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, which took effect on February 28, 2005, banned smoking in workplaces, bars, restaurants, and public transport.
But the real sting is the higher taxes to be imposed and the ban on advertising. The battle against cigarette smoking will create quite a stir in the tobacco industry, which supports millions of workers worldwide. The tobacco industry, which is a major source of government revenues, will do their best to protect their interests.
In the US, stringent laws banning cigarette smoking in indoor public areas are put into effect. In California, three cities – Calabasas, Burbank, and Santa Monica are regulating non-smoking and smoking areas outdoors. This is to protect residents and tourists from secondhand smoke, which has contributed to several health issues.
In the enclosed workplace, smoking is banned. The law requires employers to designate smoking and non-smoking areas. The smoking and non-smoking signs should be prominently displayed and should be strictly enforced. Violation of the law will cost employers stiff fines.
As laws are enacted, public support is necessary to air the facts about smoking that can help the public, especially the youth, to understand the health implications of smoking cigarettes and secondhand smoke. Schools are enlisting to support non-smoking campaigns on the campus.
In Florida, USA the state will be spending $55 million to prevent teenage smoking. The strategy is to stop nicotine addiction before it starts. It can be recalled that Florida was one of the first American states to win a lawsuit against tobacco companies for misleading the public about the dangers of smoking amid warnings and facts about smoking.
Why Cigarette Smoking Should Be Banned
Smoking is a vicious habit that should be nipped in the bud before it can start. It causes a host of deadly heart and lung conditions and affects non-smokers through secondhand smoke. There are better and less known facts about smoking but the strongest argument for quitting the lethal tobacco is the early grave and the overwhelming medical expenses for cancer treatments.
Tobacco companies are targeting the youth with candy flavored cigarettes and slick packaging. Addiction can start with the first puff and continue for a lifetime with dire results. The best time to quit the habit is to nip it before it can even start.
Smoking kills. This is a fact, and there are emerging issues about it. Desperate tobacco companies are taking up arms against anti-smoking campaigns. According to them, loss of revenues will also affect millions of workers worldwide. Other negative developments are cigarette smuggling and dumping the tobacco products in third world countries. But should these be considered in the light of the dangers smoking exposes to the public?
Smokers are also up in arms about the violation of their right to smoke, but efforts continue to educate the public on facts about smoking – in schools, in the internet, print media, and other forms of interactive media. The debate reasons that if smokers have the right to smoke and kill themselves, they should not include the unsuspecting public.
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