The Reasons Smoking Should Be Banned in Public Places

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Smoking is a process in which a substance is burned and the resulting smoke inhaled to be tasted and absorbed into the bloodstream. The substance that most commonly for smoking is the dried leaves of the tobacco plant which have been rolled into a small square of rice paper to produce a small, round cylinder called a 'cigarette'. In the case of cigarette smoking, it is contained with a mixture of aerosol particles and gasses. More than that, they also include the pharmacologically active alkaloid nicotine; the vaporization creates heated aerosol and gas into a form that allows inhalation and deep penetration into the lungs where absorption into the bloodstream of the active substances will occur. Nowadays, people's impression of smoking are no longer blurred, and they are becoming familiar with this phenomenon because more and more people smoke. Smokers have become ubiquitous, especially in public places.

A public place is a place that is generally open and accessible to people. The places where we can most often observe smokers smoking are on the street, in restaurants and at public toilets. National Health and Morbidity Survey (NHMS) in 2016 states that there is an estimation of five million Malaysians or 22.8 percent of the population, are smokers. Deputy Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr. Hilmi Yahaya said 50 percent of smokers are above 30-years-old; 40 percent are above the age of 19, while the remaining 10 percent are below 19-years-old. Furthermore, he said that four out of 10 adults or 7.6 million adults are exposed to second-hand smoke inside their houses, four of 10 adults or 2.3 million adults at workplaces, and seven out 10 adults or 8.6 million adults at public places like restaurants (Hashini, 2016). Therefore, many countries today have made decisions to create laws that prohibit smoking in public places because it affects non-smokers as well.

According to the National Health Service (2018), exposing too much of other people's smoke can increase the risk of getting lung cancer, even if you're a non-smoker. Additionally, tobacco products give negative impact and damage our environment. Cigarette butts are not just a nuisance but they are also toxic waste. They contain chemicals that pollute our waterways and ground soil and harm our wildlife. In point of fact, smoking not only brings a serious impact on human health but also to the environment. Accordingly, more cities consider bans on smoking in public places. We support smoking bans with few reservations. Smoking should be banned in public places because it will cause second-hand smoke, environmental pollution and promote a healthier lifestyle.

Second-Hand Smoke

Smoking in public places should be banned because it will cause second-hand smoke. Second-hand smoke is the smoke that originates from the consuming of the finish of a cigarette, stogie or pipe. It is similarly the smoke that smokers breathe in out. Indeed, even smoke that is breathed out contains substances that aggravate the covering of your lungs and different tissues, for example, your eyes and throat. These substances cause changes that meddle with cells growing ordinarily in your body. These adjustments in cells increment the danger of certain malignancies and other prosperity conditions. The public place which included is market door entrance, park bench, and elevator. People come to these places for peace and quiet, for necessity, so they should not be required to breathe another person’s poisonous tobacco fumes. Everybody realizes that second-hand smoke is similarly as, if not progressively, perilous than legitimately breathing in the smoke. Second-hand smoke causes sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), respiratory infections and asthma attacks to children and adults. The non-smokers presented to second-hand smoke are in danger for a considerable lot of the medical issues related to smoking. Those ends are likewise supported up by further investigations of working environment presentation to smoke.

While second-hand smoking will also affect the health of pregnant women. According to the Center for Disease Control (2018), babies whose mothers smoke while pregnant or who are exposed to second-hand smoke after birth have weaker lungs than other babies, which increases the risk for many health problems. Other than that, second-hand smoke causes heart diseases and lung cancer in smoking and non-smoking adults. Long-Term effects of second-hand smoke will cause children who grow up with parents who smoke are themselves more likely to smoke. Children and teens who smoke are affected by the same health problems that affect adults. Second-hand smoke may cause problems for children later in life including poor lung development (meaning that their lungs never grow to their full potential), lung cancer, heart disease.

The Center also mentioned that second-hand smoke contains at least 250 chemicals known to be toxic, including more than 50 that can cause cancer” (CDC, 2009). Through studies, it has been proven that second-hand smoke can cause cancer and is extremely bad for both smokers and non-smokers’ health. In addition, the CDC also states that “The California Environmental Protection Agency estimates that second-hand smoke exposure can cause approximately 3,400 lung cancer deaths and 22,700-69,600 heart disease deaths annually among adult non-smokers in the United States” (CDC, 2009). This means that just by being around people who are smoking, innocent people are dying of diseases that are caused by second-hand smoke. This violates non-smokers’ right to live a healthy lifestyle because just by being in public places where other people smoke, they are subjected to breathing in toxic fumes that can cause them health problems. Everybody has the right to breathe clean air. There is no safe level of exposure to second-hand smoke. The effects of smoking and second-hand smoke exposure are harmful, so we need to ban smoking in public places. Only a total ban on smoking in public places, including all indoor workplaces, protects people from the damages of second-hand smoke, enables smokers to stop and lessens youth smoking.

Environmental Pollution

Smoking in public places should be banned because cigarette smoking will cause environmental pollution. This due to the reason that millions of disposed of cigarette butts are poisoning the planets. For the past two decades, the environmental group Ocean Conservancy has organized the annual International Coastal Clean-up. Hundreds of thousands of volunteers scour beaches all over the world, picking up trash. By far the most common item they pick up is cigarette butts. Cigarette butts are consistently the most collected items in litter clean-up efforts, which are a costly burden to local economies. This is because the discarded cigarette butts are from the runoff from streets to drains, to rivers, and ultimately to the ocean and its beaches, cigarette filters are the single most collected item in international beach clean-ups each year. According to See Ocean Conservancy Data for 2018, cigarette butts contain the largest percentage of waste collected globally during the coastal clean-ups each year (Ocean Conservancy, 2018, p.15). Ocean pollution is a very serious issue, but many tend to not take it seriously and it is also often covered by the reporter in the News.

Under normal circumstances, when we hear the term 'ocean pollution', we would normally think more about straws, bottles and other plastic garbage. In fact, there's another sort of waste that's far worse and exist, which are the smoker filters, received far less attention than it warrants. They may seem small and relatively harmless, but they can cause irreversible damage to the oceans and wildlife in general. As stated in the Cigarette Butt Pollution Project, a cigarette butt is a combination of a plastic filter and the remnants of a smoked cigarette. Cigarette Filter- Longwood University said that the filter is non-biodegradable, 95% of cigarette filters are made of cellulose acetate (plastic), and the balance is made from papers and rayon (2000). After the cigarette butt has been discarded, those filters can take decades to decompose. Used cigarette butts are not just pieces of non-biodegradable plastic, they can also further increase the presence of plastics in our environment. Moreover, the tobacco filters also leach toxic chemicals into the water and pose a risk to many forms of aquatic life. Plastics are everywhere in the marine environment worldwide and are killing and maiming marine animals. As stated in Tobacco Free Life, cigarette butt is one of a hazardous waste because many toxic compounds have been found in measurable concentrations in cigarette butts including nicotine, arsenic, lead, copper, chromium, cadmium, and a variety of polyromantic hydrocarbons (PAHs)(2016). This is presenting a high risk to marine life and other animals. A few of these poisons will drain into water and influence oceanic biological systems, where tests have demonstrated that they murder an assortment of freshwater spineless creatures.

In accordance to Soapboxie, Thomas Novotny has written that “We have found that one cigarette butt soaked in a litre of water for 96 hours leaches out enough toxins to kill half of the fresh or salt water fish exposed to them.” (Taylor, 2019) In addition to polluting the ocean, cigarette butts are also stealth killers of marine life. Cigarette filters are made of plastic, so they pose the same risks as other kinds of plastics, but the little pieces are more likely to get eaten by smaller animals. Small pieces of plastic are eaten by fish, turtles, and seabirds, which can lead them to death. As indicated by WWF-Australia, there are no less than 1,000 turtles pass on every year from being tangled in plastic waste. Ocean turtles frequently mixed up gliding plastic refuse as nourishment. They can stifle, support inner damage or kick the bucket (WWF-Australia, 2018). The most disturbing fate of all is the time when the plastic in the turtle's stomach reflects the impression of being full. Turtles by then negligence to look out other sustenance sources and in the long run, pass on from starvation. Plastic can likewise make pockets of air in their gut, making jumping troublesome.

'Indeed, even a solitary bit of plastic can execute a turtle,' clarifies University of the Sunshine Coast sea life scientist Dr. Kathy Townsend. Subsequently, the effect of plastic contamination on marine life is incomprehensible. A cigarette butt, which comprises of the channel that makes of cellulose acetic acid derivation, is additionally one of the assistants that add to plastic contamination. As indicated by Litter Free Planet, a non-benefit against litter association, 4.5 trillion cigarette butts are littered worldwide every year, representing 75% of the 6 trillion sold. Keep America Beautiful, another enemy of litter instructive gathering reports that cigarette butts represent an expected 38% of litter in the United States, and states, areas, and regions spend an aggregate $1.3 billion on litter decrease every year (in Kirk, E, 2016). Consequently, smoking ought to be restricted in open puts in a request to diminish the cigarette butt litter and avoid the smokers litter their cigarette butts outside.

Air Pollution

Besides the above negativity, smoking also causes air pollution in public with harmful smokes such as hydrogen cyanide, carbon monoxide, and ammonia that are let out after a cigarette is lighted. Hence, smoking crucially raises the level of dangerous air pollution in city streets, according to new research that has reignited the debate about banning cigarettes in public places (NZ Herald, 2012). A five-week study by Otago University researchers in Wellington found that cigarettes cause a big increase in the number of dangerous fine particulates such as airborne particles linked to heart disease, altered lung function and lung cancer (ibid, 2012). After testing the air quality around 284 smokers at the Lower Hutt shopping center from an average distance of 2.6 meters they recorded a 70 percent increase in particulates when it came around smokers (ibid, 2012). Moreover, a test was conducted in the small, northern Italian mountain town of Chiavenna which has unusually low outdoor levels of air pollution to prove that cigarettes can cause air pollution (Miranda Hitti, 2004).

The experiment was carried out in a closed up, private garage with six small vents, which were kept open during the experiment in accordance with Italian law (ibid, 2004). It is also said that cigarettes can emit air pollution ten times greater than diesel car exhaust, suggests a controlled experiment, reported in Tobacco Control (ibid, 2004). Through the air pollution caused by cigarettes, it would affect those who are non-smokers because they would be breathing through the same air that had been polluted with cigarettes and that is why smoking in public can bring danger to non-smokers. Public smoking bans seem to significantly reduce the risk of heart attacks, particularly among younger individuals and non-smokers, according to a new study published in the September 29, 2009, issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. Researchers find that smoking bans can reduce the number of heart attacks by as much as 26 percent per year (American College of Cardiology,2009). This is because many will not be exposed to the cigarette that would affect their health. It is also shown that the beneficial effects of smoking bans appear to be fairly immediate, with declines in reported heart attack cases within 3 months (ibid, 2009).

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The impact of bans was strengthened if compliance was good if baseline smoking prevalence was low and if air quality was good (ibid, 2009). Banning smoking in public places can avoid accidental burning. Accidental burning can happen because there are many cases that some careless smokers do not extinguish their cigarette butts after smoking but rather throw it away without doing such would simply throw their lighted cigarette butts into the bush and this can cause burning. This kind of neglect shown by the public causes open burning. As you can see, over 300 cases of open burning, forest and peat fires nationwide were recorded from Aug 31 to Sept 4 (The Star Online, 2015). A check with the Fire and Rescue Department’s website revealed 317 cases for the period (ibid, 2015). This is despite the ban on open burning in several state the Fire and Rescue Department has stated that most of the cause of this cases are un-extinguished cigarette butts. Therefore, it is firmly advised that smoking in public should be banned to avoid air pollution.

Concession and Refutation

Banning smoking in public places would drive many restaurant, bar, pubs, and clubs out of business. This is because smokers would not go to these places. This business would gain lesser cash from selling cigarette and tobacco. In many places, especially pubs and restaurant are important social places for communities. They also provide jobs for a nation with few skills in places with little another job. Therefore, these jobs are important to their survival. The country over, networks are discussing the adequacy of forbidding smoking in every open spot, including private foundations. The strategy issues included are multidimensional, yet the open discussion regularly comes down to financial effect. A case study of Maryville, Mo, serves to illustrate some of the difficulties in gauging the economic impact of smoking bans (Michael, 2005). In evaluating the economic effects of smoking bans, the focus of policy-makers is often directed toward considering the overall effects of smoking bans on business in a community. Tavern and bar owners have been among the most vociferous opponents of 100 percent smoking bans (ibid, 2005).

Proprietors and customers of establishments like bars, bingo halls, bowling alleys, and casinos tend to express concerns about business losses. Survey results reveal that bar owners perceive smoking bans to be a particularly significant threat to their business. In one nationwide survey of restaurant and bar owners, 39 percent of restaurant owners expected revenue losses after a smoking ban, while 83 percent of bar owners expected losses (ibid, 2005). Organizations in networks with a generally high extent of smokers in respect to nonsmokers will be against territorial smoking bans, as will organizations and districts circumscribing networks that have not received a smoking boycott. Two papers, one by Ryan Phelps and the other by Scott Adams and Chad Cotti, have used data available from the Bureau of Labor Statistics to examine the employment effects of smoking bans. Using nationwide county-level data, these two studies examine the changes in employment at bars and restaurants after communities adopt smoking bans.

According to this data, study finds employment changes at restaurants and determine that if smoking banned in public places will seriously affect the business of the restaurant and bar but both find statistically significant employment declines at bars, with loss estimates ranging from 4 percent to 16 percent (ibid, 2005). Many establishments that would be largely unaffected might be inclined to stay on the sidelines of the debate. According to Star Online, Subang Jaya resident Azhar Jusoh, 43, said his friend’s mamak shop saw a decrease in the number of customers since the morning of Jan 1 as regulars avoided the restaurant because of the ban. He said most of his friends had a quick breakfast without staying to chat over a cup of coffee and a cigarette like they used to. “There is definitely loss of business for shops. When customers stay and chat, they are bound to order more food and drinks,” he said, suggesting that the government provide designated areas for smokers (2019). Although most people have accepted the ban on smoking in eateries, owners fear their business will be affected and this has been proven over the past few days (Star, 2019).

The smoking ban is a policy that prohibits smoking in public places like restaurants, workplaces, parks, malls, government offices, and schools, among others. As a matter of fact, smoke-free laws may not harm restaurant or bar revenue. There are policies implemented statewide and there are some that only restrict smoking in public places but not in enclosed areas. However, it can be argued that businesses will lose some customers when smoking is banned but they will gain some more when this happens because a lot of people do not smoke anymore and a lot more cannot stand what might happen if there is second-hand smoke. So for health reasons, there should be a smoking ban. It is more important to protect people’s health than to protect businesses. Pubs and clubs should adopt, for example by trying to earn more money from selling food. After a ban was introduced in New South Wales (Australia), only 9% of restaurants reported a drop in trade. Besides that, the reason of drop the earning of business may not cause but banned smoking in public place.

According to The Star Online, Habebur also said Presma members reported a drop in business by about 25% and 30% in January, however, he felt the cigarette ban was not the main reason. “It could also be due to the consumers’ lower spending power,” he said (2019). Numerous studies and surveys show that smoking bans have no great impact on the revenue of restaurants and bars and on the contrary, it might bring them a profit. According to a study funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, smoke-free laws have no significant economic impact on restaurants and bars (2013). Many studies in a different country have shown that the smoking ban does not have much impact on the profitability of restaurants and bars. For example, a new study published in Tobacco Control finds that restaurants have not suffered economically as a result of Mexico City’s 100% smoke-free law (2011). They used the Monthly Services Survey of businesses from January 2005 to April 2009 included the revenues, employment and payments to employees as the principal outcomes. As a result, there was a 24.8% increase in restaurants' revenue associated with the smoke-free law. Although this difference is not statistically significant it shows that, on average, restaurants did not suffer economically as a result of the law.

Instead, total wages increased by 28.2% and employment increased by 16.2%. In nightclubs, bars, and taverns, the survey shows that there was a decrease of 1.5% in revenues and an increase of 0.1% and 3.0%, respectively, in wages and employment. Approximately, none of these effects are statistically significant in multivariate analysis. As a conclusion, there is no statistically significant evidence that the Mexico City smoke-free law had a negative impact on restaurants' income, employees' wages and levels of employment. On the contrary, the results show a positive, though statistically non-significant, the impact of the law on most of these outcomes. On the other hand, smoke-free policies may also bring benefits and increase restaurant sales. This is because more people are demanding smoke-free establishments. In Michigan, a 2011 poll found that 93 percent of respondents indicated that they go to restaurants and bars just as or more often than they did before the law took effect (2014). The BPAA also found that fewer bowlers smoke, most people choose not to bowl in order to the smoking environment. Moreover, non-smoking bowler outspent smokers, so the smoking ban may make non-smokers as a lucrative customer base.

Furthermore, smoking should not be banned because it would not be effective to certain heavy smoker. It is because groups not really in favor of smoking bans say that they are not effective since smokers will just be usually told to leave and that penalties are not stiff (Ayres, 2015). Smoking boycott approaches don't have enough teeth since repercussions are not sufficiently unforgiving. According to the Star, a Bernama survey conducted in the Kampung Baru, Keramat and Jalan Tun Abdul Rahman found many still puffing away within the 3m designated distance from the premises. There were also not many no-smoking signs at these premises reminding the public of the ban (Star, 2019). This situation shows that it would not be effective to the smoker because it will not affect their smoking habits at all and it also will not reduce the number of smokers nor their consumption. Although the government moves to ban smoking in all eateries.

However, the debate surrounding this ban is a bit misplaced in the view, simply for the reason that this ban is bound to fail. It is because according to the Star, this is not the first time a widespread ban has been imposed on smoking in Malaysia. In fact, there are already 23 designated areas under the Control of Tobacco Products Regulation 2004 in which no one can smoke. But who remembers or, indeed, complies with the provisions of Regulation 11 (Star, 2019). Furthermore, not many people even realize that the area of Jonker Street or the entire districts of Alor Gajah and Jasin in Melaka are designated by law as nonsmoking areas which means you cannot light up anywhere in these areas (Star 2019). Therefore, banning smoking in public places would not encourage people to stop smoking in these places because they just ignore the rule and keep their smoking habits in public places.

However, the argument that say is not strong because banned smoking can reduce the number of smokers. This contention is that it will put weight on the smoker to stop. Since he will be unfit to smoke in open spots, he will figure out how to live without it for extended periods of time. Additionally, when he doesn't see anyone around him smoking or possessing a scent like a cigarette, it may lessen his desire to smoke too. In this way, one of the real favorable circumstances of a boycott is that it actuates the thought to stop smoking. According to Nick Triggle, a right to self-determination may be translated into a right to smoke if smoking is to be viewed as a pursuit of economic, social or cultural development. But to frame a behavior that is highly destructive to oneself and others as ‘social and cultural development’ is a fragile argument at best; thus, it is difficult to maintain an argument that frames smoking as falling within the scope of a right to self-determination. If health is seen as a choice, some may argue that the right to smoke can be construed as a liberty right. (Nick Triggle,2017)

In addition, Dr. Al-Delaimy and his colleagues surveyed 1,718 smokers in California who were representative of the adult population and found that completely banning tobacco use inside the home or in a whole city significantly increased the chances of smokers cutting back or quitting. (Ellis, 2013) The number of smokers in Britain has fallen by 1.9 million since the smoking ban was introduced in England a decade ago, according to Cancer Research UK. Health campaigners are celebrating the 10th anniversary of the legislation prohibiting smoking from almost all enclosed public spaces, including offices, factories, pubs, restaurants and railway stations. Smoking rates are now at their lowest ever recorded and the ban has been an “enormous success” with a significant impact on public health, said the charity’s chief executive. Cancer Research UK’s statistical information calculated the number of adult cigarette smokers in Great Britain had dropped nearly 20 percent from an estimated 10.2 million in 2007 to 8.3 million in 2016. The proportion of 16- to 24-year-olds who smoke had fallen to 17 percent from 26 percent in 2007, a record low and the biggest drop among all age groups (Katie, 2017).


As a conclusion, smoking should be banned because it will cause second-hand smoke, lead to environmental pollution and create air pollution. The environmental impact of cigarette butt waste is inestimable. Cigarette butt has a huge threat to nature, people and animals. It is a stealth killer, slowly devours and maims us. Cigarette butt waste is not just a litter, the filter falsely reassure the smokers, the cigarette waste damages habitat, landscapes, and ecosystems and ignite the destructive, deadly and injurious fire. In accordance with Cigarette Butt Pollution Project, more than 900 people in the United States die each year in fires started by cigarettes, and about 2,500 are injured. Cigarette waste also poisons the wildlife and consumes tax dollars for clean-up and disposal (2013). Ultimately, it would not fade away, but it will last forever. Aware of the dangers of cigarette butts to the ecosystem, many countries are doing their utmost to clean up these discarded cigarettes. The clean-up cost is immense.

As stated in Americans Non-smoker’s Rights Foundation, the city of San Francisco has estimated that it spends $11 million per year cleaning up butts. They expect more cities and states to label cigarette butts as toxic waste and to pursue policy approaches to address this serious environmental problem (American Nonsmokers' Rights Foundation,2017). Smoking should be banned in public place, the main reason is to reduce the number of cigarettes abandoned on the ground as well as to prohibit the harm of second-hand smoke to people. According to Cigarette Litter Prevention Program, a survey of more than 1,000 smokers found that 35% of smokers toss five or more cigarette butts per pack on the ground, overlooking the consequences of their cigarette butt litter because of its small size (2019). In fact, cigarette butts may be small but do not mean that cigarette litter is a small problem.

To reduce the cigarettes litter, we think that banning people from smoking in public place is the wisest choice as it will utterly annihilate the domino effect of the aforementioned cons. Secondly, banning people from smoking in public places can also reduce the exposure of second-hand smoke to others. Second-hand smoke is dangerous to anyone who breathes it in, no matter the smokers or non-smokers. In summary, smoking should be banned in public places because it can effectively reduce the problem and resolve our worries.

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