When the early white settlers noticed the Native Americans puffing away on pipes filled with
tobacco, they saw a great novelty indeed. But then the Native Americans did not smoke as crazily
as we to today. To them smoking was part of a ritual. The early white settlers must have tried it and
liked it. So together with potato and rubber - two really useful items - the use of tobacco spread
to other parts of the world. Some chewed it while others smoked it. When they saw a demand, the
economists jumped at the chance. A whole new
industry sprang up. Huge plantations were planted
with tobacco and all sorts of tobacco products spread all over the world.
Even at the outset, a few great minds - including some rulers - began to see that the new habit
that was spreading like wildfire, could not be good for the people. There are records of there being
anti-smoking and anti-tobacco campaigns centuries ago. Obviously they were not effective.
Today, smoking has been linked to several illnesses and to the most dreadful of them all, cancer.
Many governments the world over are spending millions on educating people on the dangers of
smoking. Yet the grip that the leaf has on people is so strong that cigarette companies are still
thriving. In more enlightened countries, cigarette advertisements are banned. Moreover laws have
been passed to stop the sales of cigarettes to minors. However the measures taken are not enough.
Young people are beginning on the dreaded habit every day.
Can cigarette companies be blamed? They claim that they are making a living and point to the
millions of workers in the industry who will lose their means of livelihood if the industry were
stopped. The companies have turned their attentions to developing countries. Here they find that the
people, frustrated with hard lives, seek some simple relief. With heavy advertisements, the idea is
touted that smoking is a cure all to a lot of life's problems. Probably because of the large
that the sales of cigarettes bring in, the governments allow the sales of cigarettes - even though
they know that they are harming their people.
Not surprisingly, the dangers of smoking are being ignored by smokers. They point at many smokers
who do not get cancer even though statistics show many who do. Anyway, it is known that it is very
difficult to give up smoking. The reason being that it is both a physical and a psychological
addiction. Therefore, the fight against smoking is led by non-smokers. Latest discoveries show that
non-smokers are even more affected by passive smoking than are smokers through direct smoking.
Armed with this knowledge, non-smokers are fighting for their rights to have clean air. More 'No
Smoking' areas are being set up, to meet the demands of non-smokers. In many countries smoking
is prohibited in cinema halls, public buses and trains, government buildings and offices. This has
effectively cut down on smoking, as far as the number of cigarettes go, but not on the number of
Many of them still puff away. Their attitude is fatalistic and they feel that if they were fated to die
then they would. All the heroism, however, seems to disappear like smoke when the doctor reveals
that the smoker has contacted the dreaded cancer. Then in retrospect they
realize that they could have stopped any time they wanted, but didn't.
||Smoking has been proven to be the cause of
many terrible illnesses, including cancer. Governments of several
countries are spending large sums of money to educate people on the
hazards of smoking. Yet somehow, the cigarette trade is flourishing as
people continue to smoke. In many countries, cigarette advertisements
are outlawed and there are laws that check the sale of cigarettes to
young people. In spite of this, youths are beginning the habit everyday.
Cigarette companies defend themselves by claiming that they provide
livelihoods to millions of people. the companies now concentrate on less
developed countries, whose frustrated people turn to cigarettes for
relief. Many governments, though aware if the dangers of smoking, are
doing little to battle it. However, smoking is being banned in certain
places throughout the world and the campaigns are being led by
non-smokers -- who do not want to suffer the harmful effects passive
smoking. Many programs are being carried out to discourage smoking... ( 160 words )