The Question/Topic of the Day for today is this: If the United States Government banned tobacco and cigarettes would it help people quit smoking? Honestly, I do not think it would. I think, if anything, it would cause people to smoke more. Let me go back to the 1930’s to back up my thesis. They tried outlawing drinking alcohol in the US in the 1930’s with Prohibition and look how that turned out. It led people to drink even more as almost a giant “Fuck you!” to the US Government. I had a debate with my youngest sister about almost this exact same topic a few years ago. My sister voiced her opinion that pot should be legalized and alcohol should be illegal, instead of the other way around. Well, being the sensible brother I am, before I called her an idiot, I decided to do the right and respectable thing. I asked her why she thought that. What she said was scary…for two reasons. One: she was 17 at the time; and 2: IT MADE SO MUCH SENSE! Her reasoning was, “Well think about it. What happens when you drink to excess? You get drunk and violent and no fun to be around. On the other side, what happens when you smoke weed? You get high, are really mellow, and don’t have a care in the world.” While she raised a valid point, I was thinking, “You’re 17! How the Hell do you know this?!” I then used the Prohibition example to back up my thought process.
I feel no matter how illegal you make something, someone somewhere will find a loophole. As of right now, marijuana is on the brink of becoming legal for medicinal purposes. In some states, you can smoke it recreationally but need a permit. But whether something is legal or not, people are going to do it anyway.
But going back to my original point: If the Government outlawed smoking cigarettes and tobacco and made them illegal, I think two very unsettling things would happen. First off, protesting and people would be pissed as Holy Hell that smoking is now altogether illegal. People would smoke it even more than they do now, again as a huge middle finger to the Government. The second thing I think would happen is people will leave the country in huge and alarming numbers in protest and anger. And trust me…unless your name is Donald Trump, you do NOT want that happening to the USA. Our economy relies so much on money and steady sources of income, and sadly, a lot of said money comes from tobacco and cigarettes. The United States as a country might go broke (even more so than we are now economically) if smoking were to be banned and outlawed entirely. And as I just said, the United States are already in debt enough as it is.
Now, having said all that, I do not want anyone reading this to get the wrong idea. I AM NOT PROMOTING SMOKING ANYTHING OF ANY KIND BY ANY MEANS! My grandfather died from complications of smoking (lung cancer) when I was 5 or 6. My grandmother had a massive stroke from very unhealthy habits, including smoking and is now almost completely immobile and in poor health. As a comparison, my grandmother in her late 80’s is healthier than the grandmother I just mentioned. I am not saying I am advocating or promoting smoking, but I am not saying it is altogether “evil” either. I see both sides. While smoking is a problem, addiction, vice, and just plain unhealthy, I understand there is a market for it and there is money to be made. I personally do not smoke, but I know it is addicting to countless people in the US. And if it earns the country money and is profitable, then why outlaw it? Even if it is a nasty, unhealthy, life-threatening habit?
So those are my 2 cents on the subject. As always, feel free to weigh in on this topic. Thanks a lot!