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Cigarettes Are To Die For

We as a society are quick to say that cocaine and meth are harmful but we are lenient when it comes to cigarettes when it comes to the question of ten million lives each year, why is it so? Why are we okay with cigarettes being shown in every movie yet when a drug is shown in a movie it becomes an above 18 movie automatically? Why do we let people smoke on 'tapris' around every corner and let it seep into our children's subconscious minds that cigarettes are okay because everyone does it?

Every year, above ten million people die in India due to smoking cigarettes, eight hundred thousand die due to passive smoking from diseases like cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes and lung diseases (including emphysema, bronchitis and chronic airway obstruction) and the thing that attracts people to this painful death is nicotine. Now keep an open mind and read this. Schedule I drugs: "Schedule I drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Some examples of Schedule I drugs are: heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), marijuana (cannabis), 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy), methaqualone, and peyote" My only question is why haven't we already treated nicotine as a schedule I drug? It matches all the definitions of a schedule I drug and is basically the means for suicide in masses. What we fail to realize is that a heavy drinker still lives longer than a chain-smoker yet we happen to campaign more against alcohol and have stricter laws for alcohol as compared to cigarettes. We need to have a stigma in society that makes it a taboo to smoke cigarettes, we need to try and shut down the 'tapris'. We need to try and take a stand against this before our future generations become used to it. We need to take a stand against it so our future generations don't die 10 years younger than what they would possibly live. Kabir Singh didn't look cool while flicking his cigarette away. Don Vito didn't look cool while smoking either. Stop making it seem like cigarettes or any form of them is cool. It isn't cool, it is death. I agree that banning cigarettes will still mean that cigarettes will be available in the market, just that cigarettes will be more discreet than they are now and that is all I am asking. Let them be hush-hush. Let our children know that it is a terrible thing that we do not talk about or associate with, the same way we zone out drugs. Symbolism matters and cigarettes need to be banned to show that it does matter a lot to the government if the population commits slow suicide in masses. On a total, 3.5 trillion dollars (350,000,000,000) are required to end poverty absolutely in the entire world, and guess what, the tobacco industry is worth half a trillion (that is 500,000,000,000) dollars. We need to take a stand. Are we okay with allowing future generations to commit mass-slow-suicide or do we want to take a stand against this and outcast smoking forever?

-Tareq Wahab


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