Britain Attempts To Ban Anyone Born After 2000 From Smoking

tumblr_m44r259AtE1r934r7

Tobacco claims a life every six seconds. It’s estimated that in the 21st century, one billion people will die from smoking-induced diseases.

Last Tuesday, doctors in Britain voted to ban cigarettes for any person born after the year 2000. This is the first step in an initiative toward creating a tobacco-free Britain within the next 20 years.

The motion was presented and passed at the British Medical Association’s (BMA) annual representatives meeting. The doctors’ union will soon be lobbying the government to create a ban on kids currently 14 years and younger.

Previously, the BMA has introduced bans on public smoking and in cars carrying children, which have been successful.

The ban was first proposed by Tim Crocker-Buque, a specialist registrar in public health medicine. He notes that 80% of smokers develop addictions in their early teens, and he hopes that this ban will decrease that likelihood. He said:

“Smoking is not a rational, informed choice of adulthood. Eighty percent of smokers start as teenagers as a result of intense peer pressure. Smokers who start smoking at age 15 are three times as likely to die of smoking-related cancer as someone who starts in their mid-20s.” [source]

Crocker-Buque also added that 90% of smokers wish they had never started. He continues:

“It is not expected that this policy will instantly prevent all people from smoking, but [rather it will] de-normalize cigarette smoking. The level of harm caused by smoking is unconscionable.” [source]

Medical professionals also noted that cigarette addiction is so powerful, that even something as serious as a skin cancer diagnosis isn’t enough to get some smokers to quit the habit. This ban is the first of many initiatives to make Britain the first country to eliminate cigarettes by 2035.

Some doctors, however, believe that a cigarette ban will result in a black market for cigarettes that will be much more dangerous than what is available today. Other doctors such as ear, nose and throat specialist Dr. Yohanna Takwoingi, believe that the ban would make illegal cigarettes more intriguing to children, bringing up the “forbidden fruit” concept.

However, the BMA stands by its proposal and maintains that smoking should never be considered “normal” and that even highly intelligent teens are not wise enough to safely and moderately use tobacco. Crocker-Buque said:

“It is time to play the tobacco end game.” [source]