Smoking can cause serious illnesses and should be made illegal


You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Present a written argument or case to an educated reader with no specialist knowledge.

Write about the following topic:

Smoking can cause serious illnesses and should be made illegal. To what extent do you agree?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.

Sample Answer:

Smoking has been a major public health concern for decades, leading to serious illnesses such as lung cancer, heart disease, and respiratory disorders. The debate over whether smoking should be made illegal is a contentious issue, with strong arguments on both sides. In my opinion, while I agree that smoking is harmful and should be discouraged, making it illegal may not be the most effective solution.

First and foremost, it is undeniable that smoking poses significant health risks. According to the World Health Organization, tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death globally, with more than 8 million people dying each year due to smoking-related illnesses. This staggering statistic alone is enough to warrant serious consideration of making smoking illegal. Additionally, the economic burden of treating smoking-related illnesses is substantial, placing strain on healthcare systems and leading to increased healthcare costs for society as a whole.

On the other hand, making smoking illegal raises a number of practical and ethical concerns. Prohibition has historically shown to be ineffective, leading to underground markets and criminal activity. The potential for a black market for cigarettes, similar to the prohibition of alcohol in the 1920s, could create more harm than good. Furthermore, it raises questions about personal freedom and individual autonomy. While smoking is undeniably harmful, should the government have the authority to dictate what individuals can and cannot do with their own bodies?

Instead of making smoking illegal, a more effective approach would be to continue implementing strict regulations and public health campaigns to discourage smoking. This could include increasing taxes on tobacco products, banning smoking in public places, and providing support for smoking cessation programs. Education and awareness about the dangers of smoking should also be prioritized, particularly targeting young people who are most at risk of starting the habit.

In conclusion, while I agree that smoking can cause serious illnesses and should be discouraged, I do not believe that making it illegal is the most practical solution. By focusing on prevention, regulation, and education, we can work towards reducing the prevalence of smoking and improving public health outcomes.

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