The Instigator
jingzhezhang
Pro (for)
Losing
11 Points
The Contender
Koopin
Con (against)
Winning
103 Points

smoking should be illegal

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/25/2010 Category: Health
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 24,197 times Debate No: 11545
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (57)
Votes (23)

 

jingzhezhang

Pro

Everyone knows that smoking kills. That's not why it should be made illegal. Nicotine is very addictive. That is not why it should be illegal.
I am not a smoker because I value my own life. However, I believe suicide, should someone want it, should be legal. I consider smoking "prolonged suicide." Honestly, that is why I don't smoke, but that is not why it should be illegal.
Okay, I'm done with that weird repetitive schpiel. I'll get to the point ("Get on with it!"). Smokers inhale approximately 10% of the smoke from their smoking device of choice. Where does the other 90% go? Right into the air. Now, regarding the air, we're all communists. I'm sure someday someone will capitalize air ($10 to go to the breathing station. The air is more pure. guaranteed!), but for now, we're communist. It's everyone's air, so whatever a smoker puts in the air, everyone else gets to breathe it in. Generally, it's not that big of a deal, but if someone lights up right next to you and you would be inconvenienced to move, you get a good dose of nicotine, CO, and a bunch of other unthinkable chemicals.
My objective in this debate is to:
1) Convince the voters that smoking should be outright illegal, for many reasons.
2) Do so in such a way as to even convince smokers that they are hurting more than themselves.
3) Spell out a reasonable method to outlaw smoking, because it is addictive, and it isn't easy to kick the habit.
Koopin

Con

======================================
OPENING STATEMENT
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I wish to express gratitude to my opponent for starting this intriguing debate. I would also like to congratulate him on his first topic and would like to welcome him to Debate.org

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DEFINITIONS
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Smoking: An act or spell of smoking tobacco. [1]
Illegal: Forbidden by law or statute. [2]

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ARGUMENT
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I will not even attempt to deny that there would indeed be many benefits to making smoking tobacco illegal.
But, there would also be many benefits to making cars illegal.
With pretty much anything, there are pros and cons.
I believe that there would be more cons to illegalizing smoking.
I will list a few below.

1. Freedom.
There are already many people saying that it is there right to take any drugs they want.
I do not know completely if this is true, but there would be an uproar of angry people who believe that smoking is there right.
America was built on freedom.
Every day that freedom is leaving us little by little.
Allowing the government to stop people from smoking is simply a-foot-in-the-door.
Do you think that the government should ban chocolate cake because it is bad for you?
Do you think the government should ban spray paint because some people inhale it?

2. Taxes
The government makes a good deal of money off of tobacco tax.
If tobacco is illegal, they would sooner or later find another way to get that money.
People would be taxed in other things such as foods, gas, and other necessities.
Many people who are not smokers would be angered with having to pay these extra taxes.

3. Criminals
If smoking was illegal, that would make everyone who is addicted to nicotine a potential criminal.
Many people get sick if they do not have a smoke, so they would go to jail for trying to do something that was legal just a few days ago.
The prisons would be filled with smokers!
There would also be even more ‘drug dealers' who would simply sell tobacco illegally.
In the end, there would still be smokers, just illegal ones.

4. More prison cost
It would cost the government a lot more funds to house the increased number of prisoners.
This would also cost the tax payers millions of more dollars, something that we do not need in today's economy.
The government must provide food, health care, Clothing, and rehabilitation costs.
In the state of California it cost on average $47,102 a year!
Forty five million adults in America smoke.
So let's say that half of these people give up the drug (which is very unlikely) and the rest go to jail for a whole year
That would cost a shocking $1,036,244,000,000!
There is no way that America could even start to pay this.
And that is for just one year alone!

5. Mass job loss.
Nearly 43,000 people were employed in some aspect of tobacco manufacturing in 1993.
It would make thousands of people lose their jobs.
Many of these people have families of their own that need to be taken care of.
The unemployment rate in America is so high right now that we cannot simply lay off all these people.
It would not be the moral or inelegant thing to do.

You claim that we should give up smoking because it harms others.
Did you know that we are also harmed by the smoke that cars give off?
Do we go with the easy choice and ban cars?
No, we try to fix it some other way, carpooling, driving less, making more pro-air cars.
Same with smoking, if we had to change anything about it why not make a law that says you must smoke in a designated area only.
We already have laws about smoking to protect people.
You cannot smoke at schools or in hospitals, many people cannot smoke at their own jobs, and it is now illegal to air tobacco commercials on television.
There are many things that we could try, but I do not completely see the need.
There are plenty of other things that are harming us, and second hand smoke is at the bottom of the list.
Smoke going into the air is not as bad as you are making it seem.
It is most unlikely that we will pollute the planet that bad with smoke from tobacco.

If we compare the Pros and Cons, we can see that it is obvious that illegalizing smoking is a bad idea.
There are also other small things that would cost us money, like the court costs to ban it.
That is all I have to say for now, I do request that you show me your source of how people only inhale 10% of the smoke.

Thank you, and I look forward to your response.

Sources:
(1). http://dictionary.reference.com...
(2). http://dictionary.reference.com...
(3). http://www.lao.ca.gov...
(4). http://org.elon.edu...
(5). http://slati.lungusa.org...
Debate Round No. 1
jingzhezhang

Pro

I would like to thank my opponent for making this debate possible.
I agree to his definitions of smoking and Illegal.

I would now like to rebut my opponent's case.
In his first point he said that America is a free country. But look at all the consequences of smoking! Even if it is a free country, I think that if the government want the best for his people, then he should get rid of smoking for it is very harmful to the human body also in my opponent's case he asked the following questions
Do you think that the government should ban chocolate cake because it is bad for you?
Do you think the government should ban spray paint because some people inhale it?
These questions doesn't relate to the topic, smoking tobacco can get you addicted, but chocolate cake wouldn't. Smoking tobacco have long term-consequences while chocolate cake has short ones.

In his second point he described taxes from tobaccos. But why can't we build some other factories other than tobacco making. We are wasting tons of materials, and lives by making something this dangerous.

In his third point he described about criminals. Once we ban tobacco, people at first who are addicted might do something illegal and lose their life. But think about all the lives lost each day from people smoking tobacco; cancer and other sickness often comes up. In the end there would be smokers but to the minimum amount, so more lives are saved each day.

In his fourth and fifth point he described the prison costs adn mass job losses. But if the government got rid of all the drugs, then the people who smoke would be to the minimum amount. The government can build other jobs for the people. It will to better to save lives and spent a little moeny then having the smokers kill themselves and the other people around them.

Now I will present my points.
Scientists agree that smoking is dangerous. Tobacco smoke can cause cancer, strokes and heart disease. Smoking does not just harm the smoker – it also harms people nearby, who breathe in the smoke (this is called "passive smoking"). Smokers choose to smoke, but people nearby do not choose to smoke passively. People should only be exposed to harm if they understand the risks and choose to accept them. A complete ban on smoking in public is needed to protect people from passive smoking.

The opposition is wrong to say that people choose to smoke passively. In many places, there are no non-smoking bars or restaurants. Unless people refuse to go out with friends, they cannot avoid passive smoking. People who work in smoky workplaces (e.g. bars) often do not freely choose this sometimes no other jobs are available. In most countries, safety standards do not allow workers to be exposed to unnecessary danger, even if they agree. Workers should not be exposed to other people's smoke, since they may not have made a free choice to do so.

A ban would encourage smokers to smoke less or give up. If smoking was banned in public places, it would no longer be a social activity. Instead, smokers would have to leave their friends inside and go outside to smoke. This would be particularly unpleasant when it is cold/wet. One third of smokers in Scotland said the ban was helping them to cut down. If smoking was a less social activity, fewer people would start smoking. In many countries, governments pay all or some of the cost of treating smoking-related diseases. This means that governments should have a right to discourage smoking. It is legal to smoke tobacco, so governments have no right to try to make people stop. It is therefore wrong to argue that a ban on public smoking should be introduced to encourage people to give up. Smokers fund their own healthcare through the high taxes they pay on tobacco. In any case, heavy smokers are unlikely to give up since they are addicted to nicotine.

People will not smoke more at home. Smokers need to maintain a certain level of nicotine in their blood to remain content. A ban on smoking in public would force them to smoke less while at work. Over time, this would lower the level of nicotine they need to feel content. This would reduce how often they need to smoke. They would therefore smoke less at home, as well as less at work.

Thank you, and I look forward to your response.:)
Koopin

Con

I thank my opponent for his timely response.

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ARGUMENT
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You say that even though the USA is a free nation, the government should do what is best for its people.
Who decides what is best?
Like I said before, allowing the government to stop people from smoking is simply a-foot-in-the-door. It is called communism.

You claim that chocolate cake has a just short term effect, this is wrong.
People gain weight and have heart attacks, another huge killer in the USA, right next to cancer.
People do indeed get addicted to chocolate cake.
The point though is not about the cake; it is just an example of how the government should not have complete control.

You say that we could simply build some other factories and make money from taxes.
Okay, first of all factories are not the answer to solving the economy crises.
If we could simply build factories and make money, then our nation would be rich!
Secondly, what factories exactly?
You have to be specific.

You claim that cancer claims so many lives, yes it does.
But people who start smoking already know the risks.
They accept it, and deal with it. Second hand smoke is dangerous, but you would have to be around it constantly.
A smoker can go through a pack a day and get cancer, but non smokers just get a small bit of it.
What I do not get about this is that you say that there would only be a small amount criminals, why?
What does your point have to do with my forth point?

Again, the government can not simply make new jobs.
They would have done so already if it were possible.
The people who loose their tobacco jobs would simply join all the other unemployed.
You say that the government could just get rid of the tobacco.
This is very wrong to.
Weed is illegal, but it is sold pretty much anywhere.
Tobacco is much easier to grow.
There would still be many criminals and job losses.

Moving to your points, yes I agree that smoking causes cancer and is dangerous.
I think I covered most of your points in my argument above.
You would have to be around and constantly inhaling second hand smoke for it to be dangerous.
I agree with you on some of your points, but while many of your points are strong, there would be more harm than good in the banning of tobacco.

I look forward to your response, and again ask for your source.
Debate Round No. 2
jingzhezhang

Pro

I sorry this was at the last minute panic. It was at 1minute 43 seconds. Sorry!

I'm not going to give up though!!

We're havin gthis debate som eother time!
Koopin

Con

I thank my opponent for this debate, vote CON.
Debate Round No. 3
57 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Rodriguez47 3 years ago
Rodriguez47
I'm still puzzled as to why smoking ad are banned from radio and television.
Posted by Ste93 3 years ago
Ste93
It's hardly free will taking a drug that you are addicted to! The authorities tax tobacco, which is sort of exploiting people who are addicted. I think smoking should be made illegal in the long run, but a major reform in educating people about drugs and helping those who are addicted is required first. This, I suspect, may take a very long time.
Posted by Wikuk 4 years ago
Wikuk
Probably the most important question is: Is there enough data available that shows that second hand smoking is significantly dangerous to the health of people. As far as I know there is none, but since I get most of my data from Penn & teller and the internetz I'm very understudied on this topic.

Also, funny note. How would it be possible to illegalize suicide... It's not as if you can get sent to jail if you've done the deed, is it...
Posted by jingzhezhang 4 years ago
jingzhezhang
sigh....

I failed....
Posted by Koopin 4 years ago
Koopin
I am one of four kids, my mother is 42 an has never smoked.

But that is not the point of this debate...
Posted by Rakiela 4 years ago
Rakiela
TOTAL RUBBISH , im a mother with 4 kids , how else may i take my stress away ?
Posted by jingzhezhang 4 years ago
jingzhezhang
Whhyyyy??????!!!!
Posted by jingzhezhang 4 years ago
jingzhezhang
I now need 59 more points!!
Vote for Pro!!
Posted by jingzhezhang 4 years ago
jingzhezhang
I just now need 66 points!!!
Posted by Koopin 4 years ago
Koopin
Yep, it is a close one...
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