The Instigator
ConserativeDemocrat
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
A341
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points

Smoking should be banned

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
A341
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/14/2015 Category: Health
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 704 times Debate No: 78681
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)

 

ConserativeDemocrat

Pro

This is my first debate to test my skills. I vote smoking should be banned.
Rules:
1) Use proper grammar and spelling
2) Round one is acceptance only
3) Cite your sources
4) Forfeiting is a Disqualification
5) BoP is shared
Good luck
A341

Con

I accept.
Debate Round No. 1
ConserativeDemocrat

Pro

Thank you for accepting.

1) Smoking is harmful to your health.
We all know that smoking causes diseases. It causes millions of smokers to die early, and get illnesses like Cancer and emphysema. Why should we allow something that causes so much harm? In fact, cigarettes and similar objects, are the only products that if used how the manufacturer intended, can kill you. Only cigarettes can do that.

2) Secondhand smoke.
Smoking also has 2 nasty byproducts, toxic cigarette buts, and secondhand smoke. Secondhand smoke is the smoke that bystanders involuntarily breath in. Studies have shown that secondhand smoke is just as dangerous, if not more dangerous then firsthand smoke. Smoking should be banned to prevent us from all that harm. As for smoking areas, why should businesses have to waste space and money building special areas to allow people to hurt themselves and others. Those people also could have kids, so where do they go? People also smoke at parks, hurting many kids who just want to play and have fun. If you have kids, smoking indoors and in the car with them can leave them with asthma and the same diesases as the parent. That is unfair. What is also unfair is for the people who walk outside in cities also have to breath in disgusting smoke all the time as smokers smoke on sidewalks. Why should that be harmed for a smokers disgusting habit?

3) Litter.
Anyone who has walked on the sidewalks have seen tons of cigarette butts all over the ground. That is littering, which is against the law. So why are smokers not getting in trouble then? The butts look gross, and kids like to grab interesting things, which could be a ciggarette butt, which could then lead to dangerous situations where the kid eats the butt. Ciggarette buts are discusting and animals could also eat them.

Conclusion: As you can see, smoking has many horrible effects, including harm to the smoker, harm to bystanders, harm to kids, harm to businesses, and harm to the environment. With all these downsides,
there is absolutely no reason to allow smoking.
A341

Con

Prohibition Doesn't Work

Over and over again prohibition has been used as an answer to the problems caused by various substances which are considered dangerous. It has been tried with alcohol in america [1] and with drugs today [2]. Neither of these significantly impacted the rate of the consumption of these drugs [3] [4] and all of these lead to gangs profiting off of the prohibited substances [5] [6].

My point is not that tobacco isn't dangerous but that banning it will not address tobacco consumption in any significant way and that it will lead to gangs taking profiting from illegal tobacco.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] https://en.wikipedia.org...
[3] http://www.fourpoundsflour.com... (btw there is a significant drop but that comes right before prohibition, after 1920 when it came into effect)
[4] http://content.gallup.com... (as we see here cannabis use has considerably increased since prohibition).
[5] http://www.thefinertimes.com...
[6] https://en.wikipedia.org...
Debate Round No. 2
ConserativeDemocrat

Pro

Thank you for responding. I realized that I forgot to post links, so here they are:
https://my.clevelandclinic.org...
http://www.who.int...

But now onto my counter.

You state that banning smoking wouldn't work because people would still do it even with the ban. While that is true, that would still do many positives. First of all, a government is supposed to protect it's citizens. So even though done would still smoke, some people will follow the law and stop, helping themselves and others. My second point is that there will be gangs and others of that sort who still smoke. But people in public will be helped by this as no one will be smoking on sidewalks. As for people smoking in there homes, kids can tell teachers or realitives and they will make the parent stop. Also, your argument is also like saying because people murder even with it being illegal, we should make it legal, as people will murder anyway. That would be horrible. With that, a ban on smoking would not prevent everyone from smoking, but it would stop smoking in public, smoking in presence of kids, and it also would prevent things such as celebrities, movies, TV, video games, ads, and books from influencing kids to smoke.
A341

Con

Continued Argument

Smoking Rates Can Be Decreased In Other Ways

In the last 40 or so years there has been a significant pushback against smoking by both governments and NGOs which has lead to a significant decrease in smoking rates [1] which would likely no have occurred under a smoking ban. A smoking ban would likely not have achieved the same results meaning many more people would have died because of smoking related conditions.

Reasonable Restrictions Can Be Placed On Smoking

Where I live (Scotland) it's illegal [2] to smoke in most places where anyone could conceivably cause problems with second hand smoke and this has lead to most people smoking in their homes or in places where they would never possibly pass smoke onto anyone. This means that they smoke in the places where people would likely smoke with a smoking ban in place however it has several benefits:

1. It's much easier to get treatment because it isn't criminal to smoke.
2. Packaging legislation can be introduced (such as the current campaign in Australia where cigarette packets carry pictures of the damage of smoking).
3. The rebellious attraction of the use of illegal drugs isn't present leading to lower smoking rates among young people.
4. People who above anything else need help to get off smoking aren't criminalized. Something that we have seen fail in the war on drugs where the problem hasn't been addressed (see previous sources) and the prison population has hugely expanded [3].

Rebuttal

"First of all, a government is supposed to protect it's citizens."

Yes it is meant to protect it's citizens, this doesn't mean keep up the image of protection through the imposition of ineffective and damaging laws.

"Also, your argument is also like saying because people murder even with it being illegal, we should make it legal, as people will murder anyway."

No, an analogous situation with murder would be if we had empirical evidence that legalized murder lead to less murder as we don't it is not analogous. We know that the use of drugs can be empirically shown to be curtailed better through paths of than criminalization (see sources from last argument).

" With that, a ban on smoking would not prevent everyone from smoking, but it would stop smoking in public, smoking in presence of kids, and it also would prevent things such as celebrities, movies, TV, video games, ads, and books from influencing kids to smoke."

It is more than possible to legislate against this without banning smoking. In the US and the UK the tobacco industry is forbidden from advertising (through legislation in the UK and through self imposed rules in the US).

[1] http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk...
[2] https://en.wikipedia.org...(Scotland)_Act_2005
[3] http://www.delanceyplace.com...
Debate Round No. 3
ConserativeDemocrat

Pro

My response to your arguments:

"Smoking rates can be reduced in other ways"
You provide no examples of this, so this point is invalid.

"Reasonable restrictions can be placed on smoking"
Again, examples please.

You also state that banning smoking will be harmful. How? It would be helpful as it protects bystanders, property, and the smoker.

Finally, there are no reasonable restrictions on smoking. If you smoke in your house alone, you hurt yourself. How can a government allow that? If someone has kids, but smokes outside, it's a terrible role model and the kids could lose their Mom or Dad. If they smoke indoors or outside in the presence of others, both parties get harmed. None of these are good situations, therefore there are no "reasonable" restrictions on smoking. If the ban went into effect, tobacco plantations would grow other crops, and we would no longer import it. Cigarettes, pipes, and cigars would no longer be sold, therefore most people would no longer able to smoke. Unless people turn to illegal methods, which many wouldn't, then smoking rates would drop to less then a percent. Also, you would not be arrested if caught smoking; you would get fined every time you are caught. If you are addicted, then you can go to rehab with tobacco companies paying for you. I look forward to seeing your final arguement.
A341

Con

Rebuttal

"You provide no examples of this, so this point is invalid." [referring to other ways of reducing smoking other than a ban]

I did, to quote my last argument: "In the last 40 or so years there has been a significant pushback against smoking by both governments and NGOs" and I cited the reduction in smoking rates associated with the pushback against them.

"Again, examples please." [referring to reasonable legal restrictions]

Here I specifically cited the "Smoking, Health and Social Care (Scotland) Act 2005" (btw that link may be broken) and elaborated by explaining:

"Where I live (Scotland) it's illegal to smoke in most places where anyone could conceivably cause problems with second hand smoke and this has lead to most people smoking in their homes or in places where they would never possibly pass smoke onto anyone. This means that they smoke in the places where people would likely smoke with a smoking ban in place however it has several benefits:

1. It's much easier to get treatment because it isn't criminal to smoke.
2. Packaging legislation can be introduced (such as the current campaign in Australia where cigarette packets carry pictures of the damage of smoking).
3. The rebellious attraction of the use of illegal drugs isn't present leading to lower smoking rates among young people.
4. People who above anything else need help to get off smoking aren't criminalized. Something that we have seen fail in the war on drugs where the problem hasn't been addressed (see previous sources) and the prison population has hugely expanded."

"You also state that banning smoking will be harmful. How?"

Well as I said past examples of prohibition have lead to increases or plateau in the consumption of drugs, a significant increase in gang activity and a reduction in the ability of people to seek treatment [1] (see previous sources).

That means no decrease in smoking.

"If you smoke in your house alone, you hurt yourself. How can a government allow that?"

Because we don't live in a fascist society. We understand that a society with totalitarian restrictions on individual liberty is a society that we don't want to live in. Also these restrictions are ineffective as I have previously shown.

"If someone has kids, but smokes outside, it's a terrible role model and the kids could lose their Mom or Dad. If they smoke indoors or outside in the presence of others, both parties get harmed. None of these are good situations, therefore there are no "reasonable" restrictions on smoking."

There are no alternatives here, banning smoking wouldn't stop this.

"If the ban went into effect, tobacco plantations would grow other crops, and we would no longer import it."

It's interesting because despite cannabis being criminal in the UK there's been a substantial increase in domestic the production of the drug. The same thing would likely happen if smoking was banned.

"Cigarettes, pipes, and cigars would no longer be sold, therefore most people would no longer able to smoke."

Of course they would be sold. It's incredibly easy to make something that could be used as a pipe with just basic woodworking knowledge and access to the internet [2] and rolling paper alternatives are very easy to come by [3].

"Unless people turn to illegal methods, which many wouldn't, then smoking rates would drop to less then a percent."

I love how you provide no evidence for this. No there are no serious examples of prohibition which have made any substantial long term impact on the rates of drug consumption and many that have increased the rates of drug consumption [4] and in fact drug legalization can lower drug consumption [5]. Remember people would turn to illegal methods, smoking is an addication not something you choose to do.

"Also, you would not be arrested if caught smoking; you would get fined every time you are caught."

And this would help? At the very least this is regressive taxation and at the most you would be encouraging theft by removing money that addicts would use to fund their addiction to the now ridiculously expensive tobacco [6].

"If you are addicted, then you can go to rehab with tobacco companies paying for you."

This already happens in the UK through taxes on tobacco making enough money for rehabilitation programs. I suspect it also happens in most developed countries.

But that isn't even the questionable part of this statement. There is not way on earth that you could get tobacco companies to pay for rehabilitation in a country that they don't operate in due to a ban.

Conclusion

If tobacco was banned it would lead to:

Drug gangs
Decreased treatment
No long term decrease in smoking

And other measures similar to the "Smoking, Health and Social Care Scotland Act 2005" would more than take care of the worst excesses of smoking. In addition propaganda by government and NGOs has shown to be more than effective enough in the reduction of smoking in ways that banning tobacco just wouldn't.

[1] http://alcoholrehab.com...
[2] https://www.youtube.com...
[3] https://www.youtube.com...
[4]http://3.bp.blogspot.com...
[5] http://s3.amazonaws.com...
[6] http://www.bloomberg.com... (my point here being that cannabis prices were ridiculously inflated by prohibition and the same would happen for tobacco)
Debate Round No. 4
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by noora 1 year ago
noora
Yeah! I think that pro's ideas are more reasonable and convincing!!
Posted by prioritisingmorality 1 year ago
prioritisingmorality
The pro has a good point. While some people will most certainly still smoke even if it is banned the number of people taking ciggarettes will highly decrease. Might not be as good as getting them all out but hey its progress right?
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Midnight1131 1 year ago
Midnight1131
ConserativeDemocratA341Tied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's main arguments were, health of the smoker, bystanders, and litter. Con's main arguments were, that prohibition doesn't work, there are other ways of reducing smoking, and there can be restrictions placed. Con's arguments regarding prohibition stand, because Pro's rebuttal was very lacking, simply asking Con for examples that defend all of his arguments, and Con provided them. That was the end of the debate, so by there all of Con's arguments stood, now defended by examples. This argument was the most important in the debate, because effectiveness of the ban outweighs any benefits it might have. If it's not effective, those benefits are useless. Since Con showed, using examples from the past, that a prohibition on tobacco would lead to more criminal activity relating to the substance, and wouldn't lead to much decrease in smoking, the win goes to him.