The Instigator
Pro (for)
The Contender
Con (against)

Cigarettes should be banned in the US.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+2
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Argument Due
We are waiting for EStone523 to post her argument for round #2. If you are EStone523, login to see your options.
Time Remaining
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/11/2019 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 1 day ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 206 times Debate No: 120274
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (14)
Votes (0)




Cigarettes are very unhealthy for the user. They could get addicted, Permanently damage their lungs, Stain their teeth, And many other harmful consequences. According to CDC. Gov, Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable disease and death in the United States, Accounting for more than 480, 000 deaths every year, Or about 1 in 5 deaths.


While cigarettes are indeed proven to be bad for a person's health, If cigarettes/tobacco products are banned from the United States then we get into the problem of taking away a person's right of the freedom of choice. We should not take away a person's right to decide on whether or not they want to use tobacco products.

Consider the Prohibition Act of 1920 (18th amendment to the US Constitution) that banned the production, Distribution, And consumption of alcohol throughout the States. After the Prohibition laws went into effect, Local and federal law enforcers alike had trouble enforcing the ban. Along with the struggle to enforce the laws, America saw a drastic rise in criminal activity, Specifically with the problem of bootlegging (illegally manufacturing and distributing alcohol). It was these issues, Alongside others, That ultimately led to the repealing of the Prohibition Act in 1933. I believe we would see a similar story if we passed legislation to ban tobacco products.

Sources -
Prohibition: https://www. History. Com/topics/roaring-twenties/prohibition
Debate Round No. 1


Astro-Otter forfeited this round.
This round has not been posted yet.
Debate Round No. 2
14 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by omar2345 3 days ago

Freedom of choice describes an individual's opportunity and autonomy to perform an action selected from at least two available options, Unconstrained by external parties (Found it by typing in Freedom of choice)

I do understand that you are not exactely free to do that choice without consequence but it is still freedom of choice. I think a better word for what you speaking about is freedom from legal consequence. This also adds a problem that something being illegal does not mean it is bad but that can be included with follow up explanations.
Posted by EStone523 3 days ago

First, I never said "technically taking away someone's freedom of choice. " I said, "we get into the problem of taking away a person's right of the freedom of choice. "

Still, You do bring up a great point about someone still has the choice to murder, However their consequence for doing so is jail time. I don't believe that's freedom of choice, Though. Freedom of choice is when a person has the option to do two or more things regarding a particular activity without being restrained by external forces (the government, Law enforcement, Etc. ). So, With the example of murder, You really only get one choice that doesn't involve the intervention of an external force-don't murder. However, Right now adults still have the freedom to choose whether or not they want to smoke or use other tobacco products. That's why I said we would get into a problem of taking away someone's right to the freedom of choice.

I mentioned before when speaking with Zhaod1 that I will keep in mind to be more clear with my wording next time, Thank you!
Posted by omar2345 3 days ago

"technically taking away someone's freedom of choice. "
I don't think people are not allowed to commit murder but they will face consequences by the state doing so. So people do still have the freedom of choice to murder but the consequence of jail time.
Posted by EStone523 4 days ago
@zhaod1 Well, Technically yes. But having a law saying you shouldn't murder someone is also technically taking away someone's freedom of choice. I think it's ultimately a balancing act of the good of the people and the good of the individual.

I guess in my mind, Smoking being legal balances out more than if it were banned; the legalization of drugs like heroin and cocaine, However, Doesn't seem to balance out in my mind because there's already a huge problem with drugs and overdoses now while they're illegal. . . Just think of the drug abuse and overdoses that will happen if they become legal. That's my argument with that.

I can see how my statement could be confusing, Though. Thank you for making me aware of that - I'll be sure to try and rephrase/clarify my stance better next time!
Posted by zhaod1 4 days ago
Ok, Thanks for your answer!
However, I'm still a bit befuddled about that you said that banning smoking would be "taking away a person's right of the freedom of choice. " Wouldn't doing drugs, Like heroin, Also be considered a person's right as well?
Posted by EStone523 4 days ago
@zhaod1 I am against drug legalization (this does not include marijuana, I am still undecided on my opinion with recreational marijuana) because drugs carry a huge risk to the user; not only are the drugs already illegal, But they harm the user. Now, I understand smoking also harms the user, However, Smoking does not create the same negative effect as, Say, Heroin. Smoking also isn't illegal as of yet. Another big thing that makes me against drug legalization is the increase in crime when it comes to drug users. Drug-related offenses are the most common offenses seen within jails and prisons in the US.

My standpoint with drug legalization is more just within the terms of it's already illegal and there is a higher rate of crime that's in correlation with drug users.
Posted by zhaod1 4 days ago
You are against a smoking ban, But are against drug legalization as well. Could you let me know why?
Posted by omar2345 4 days ago
I think it is more of a side of you are 18 or above and you should be able to make your own decisions. By restricting what a person can do you are in some way calling them stupid. The law does not think you are able to not smoke if it wasn't illegal. If smoking is illegal. The law thinks people are dumb enough to murder which is why there is a law for it. Smoking is more of a personal harm rather than murder which is death of another individual. People gain from murder either by stealing or vengeance. Smoking at best allows corporations make a lot of money but that is it. Yes people can burn an area on a person's body but there are better ways to commit harm to others.


"Maybe the answer is to introduce a rehabilitation program along with prohibition of cigarettes and alcohol"
Like you said earlier the relief people get is why they turn to drugs. Instead of banning drugs why not provide a better alternative. Have research find the best way to increase individual happiness at no cost of the person's health. That would be difficult because it can be an addiction but I think it would provide much better results than outlawing said drug and rehabilitating them.

Another thing you were going at was that poverty is more of an important issue than prohibiting drugs. If you did say that I agree.
Posted by EStone523 4 days ago
emsilblook You have a great point with the correlation between those drugs and rising crime rates.

I was actually going to bring up the idea of introducing a rehabilitation program (like how there is Alcoholics Anonymous for alcohol addicts) later on in the debate, As well as the economic standpoint of a tobacco/cigarette ban. My only point for being against a cigarette ban is not solely based in the premise of free will, Though I do believe that plays a big part in it. Thank you for the comments!
Posted by emsiblook 4 days ago
I disagree. If you have too many rules, As con pointed out, You get the Prohibition Act crisis. People naturally want to rebel to regain a sense of control, As humans we have a need for control, That's why teenagers rebel against parents who are overly-demanding.

The only thing I would say is that free will is not the only issue. The reason cigarettes and alcohol are not banned is because people need a way to cope with life, And there is no other viable option for them in their view. But too much access to addictive substances also has a negative impact.

The legalisation of marijuana, Heroin and cocaine has led to higher crime rates, With 80% of all property crime in the city of Amsterdam being made by addicts, Leading to a higher police presence throughout the city.

In China, The legalisation of opium in the 1800s led to ninety million Chinese being addicted to the drug by 1900, And it took 50 years of rehabilitation and police measures to correct the problem.

In Great Britain (woot), Heroin was decriminalised in being given by doctors in order to slowly wean addicts off of the drug. This had the opposite effect, It was considered free heroin in their eyes and by 1985 England had 80, 000 heroin addicts.

Legalisation of addictive drugs has had a similar effect in Spain, Japan, Switzerland, Egypt, Iran and Thailand.

Maybe the answer is to introduce a rehabilitation program along with prohibition of cigarettes and alcohol, Not just outright prohibition.
This debate has 0 more rounds before the voting begins. If you want to receive email updates for this debate, click the Add to My Favorites link at the top of the page.