If current trends continue, tobacco will cause up to one billion deaths in the 21st century. Trillions of filters, filled with toxic chemicals, are discarded every year. What’s more, child labor is used in U.S. tobacco farming.
The laws governing tobacco use are baffling. If an individual wandered around spraying toxic chemicals on random strangers, they would immediately be arrested and charged with a felony. Yet it is perfectly acceptable to blow deadly secondhand smoke into a child’s face. It is unfathomably reckless to permit that.
Consider these grim stats:
Smoking remains America’s leading cause of disease and preventable death, resulting in nearly half a million fatalities annually. More than 8 million Americans live with a smoking-related illness or conditions.
There is enough nicotine in five cigarettes to kill an average adult if ingested whole. Most smokers take in only one or two milligrams of nicotine per cigarette however, with the remainder being burned off.
The clay found in cat litter is used in cigarettes as filler. This allows tobacco companies to “weigh down” their cigarettes so that they will fall into the “large cigar” category, thus helping the companies avoid taxes.
Ambergris, otherwise known as whale vomit, is one of the hundreds of possible additives used in manufactured cigarettes.
Benzene is a known cause of acute myeloid leukemia, and cigarette smoke is a major source of benzene exposure. Among U.S. smokers, 90 percent of benzene exposure come from cigarettes.
Radioactive lead and polonium are both present in low levels in cigarette smoke.
Hydrogen cyanide, one of the toxic byproducts present in cigarette smoke, was used as a genocidal chemical agent during World War II.
Secondhand smoke contains more than 50 cancer-causing chemical compounds, 11 of which are known to be Group 1 carcinogens.
The smoke from a smoldering cigarette often contains higher concentrations of the toxins found in cigarette smoke than exhaled smoke does.
While they may look like white cotton, cigarette filters are made of very thin fibers of a plastic called cellulose acetate. A cigarette filter can take between 18 months and 10 years to decompose.
Worldwide, approximately 10 million cigarettes are purchased a minute, 15 billion are sold each day, and upwards of 5 trillion are produced and used on an annual basis.
Kids are still picking up smoking at the alarming rate of 3,000 a day in the U.S., and 80,000 to 100,000 a day worldwide.
Approximately one quarter of the youth alive in the Western Pacific Region (East Asia and the Pacific) today will die from tobacco use.
Half of all long-term smokers will die a tobacco-related death.
Every eight seconds, a human life is lost to tobacco use somewhere in the world.
Tobacco use is responsible for five million or 12% of all deaths of adults above the age of 30 each year.