It has been shown countless times that smoking tobacco is a serious public health problem. The rampancy of lung and throat cancer means that we need to project young adults from themselves. To think that a 12 year old could rationally weigh the pros and cons of smoking is ludicrous. Of course we need to restrict the sale of tobacco to young ones.
Because smoking, or chewing tobacco can greatly impact your health, an individual should be at an age that they can fully comprehend the risks of consuming tobacco. If an individual is going to knowingly do something potentially harmful to themselves they can say it was a choice they made alone.
There should definitely be an age restriction on buying tobacco. I think a person should have to be 18 to be able to purchase it. It is so bad for the body and allowing minors to use it would not be a good idea. They should have to wait to buy tobacco.
Many research studies have shown that the brain does not fully develop in may people until they are even in their twenties. I do believe that minors should be restricted from tobacco usage as much as is possible while also being educated on the dangers and harmfulness of tobacco. However once a person reaches the age of 18 they should legally be allowed to do whatever they wish with their bodies in a controlled setting. Secondhand smoke laws are important and they do save lives.