- Personal Finance
The Cost of the Cigarette Habit
I think society as a whole had greatly infringed on the rights of cigarette smokers. They do so by having so many restrictions and added taxes on the cost of cigarettes. Those who do not see it that way, see it as a way to keep society free of a harmful habit, which is true. Yet, the restrictions impinge of their freedom to have a cigarette at a club, bar or maybe, their apartment. Where does one stop?
It was not like that even 20 years ago, let alone further back. Then, a pack of cigarettes cost 50 cents, a carton (20 packs) was like $10-15. While I have always hated cigarette smoke, I tolerated it as a kid of two parents who smoked in the house, in the car. I had friends who smoked, mostly because it was thought of being cool. Why does it still look cool to have a cigarette? I even tried to become a smoker, but the logic killed it- I, mean, why would I spend my money on something I knew was bad for me and could kill me?
I often tried to present this argument to my mom, who started when she was 17 (she lived to be 79, and only got lung cancer in the last six months of her life). She would often cite past attempts to stop. I would even locate her carton of cigs and open the packs and break the cigarettes. Man, she was so pissed. That did not stop her either. As to second hand smoke, despite the studies, I find them silly. I was subjected to it all the time. I can spot a smoker miles away. The second hand smoke is, by the time you might inhale it, sooo dispersed in concentration, whatever dangers are minimal. What you are left with is the smell and traces only.
I am anti-smoking, but smokers have rights also. Why should society tell them they cannot smoke in their apartment? or, be an outcast at a bar (you might has well put a symbol on their back). Why does the law have to intervene? Before the law intervene, people worked it out. If I did not like it, I would ask them to put it out or I would distance myself, open a window. Only 20% of Americans now smoke.
The cost of this habit is just insane now. The taxes should force all to stop ASAP. In New York, a pack costs $4.35 in taxes alone, these are in addition the regular cost, which is the costliest place to smoke. The cheapest is in Missouri, where only 17 cents is added to the cost.The Federal tax on a pack is $1. The tax in Calif. may jump from 87 cents to $1.87 soon. Right now, the cost for a pack is $5. If the new tax occurs, the price will be nearly $7!