I have mixed feelings about this. Personally I rejoiced when the state I live in banned smoking in restaurants, bars, etc. But that doesn't mean that I don't think laws like this are overkill. Teenagers already get the cigarettes somehow. Changing an arbitrary number is not going to change whether or not teenagers or young adults smoke. I was an exchange student in high school to a country with a very different view on alcohol consumption. Teenagers at 14 were allowed to purchase alcohol with a certain proof (can't remember what it was not though), at 18 were allowed a higher proof, then a higher proof at age 21. There was far less over doing it than in my hometown where the legal drinking age is 21. There seemed to be a more healthy respect for alcohol and cigarettes too. I'm not necessarily saying that I think all teenagers should be allowed to drink, but I am saying that because it's seen as forbidden it pretty much automatically seems fun. I'm not a big drinker, but I went to lots of parties as a teenager where it seemed there was more alcohol available to us than there was in the local store.
Fitness Minutes: (207,160)
7,308 11/2/13 9:18 P
It's sad, but kids will find a way to smoke no matter how old they are,
I think that Mayor Bloomberg should be paying more attention to crime, etc than the sale of cigarettes. I don't smoke and agree that it is a horrible habit but changing the age will not solve anything. When I was 19 they changed the drinking age in my state from 18 to 21. Yes it made getting alcohol a bit more labor intensive for those who wanted it but it really did not deter anyone.
As for marijuana, I watched a program a few weeks ago regarding the medical use. Most people that use marijuana for medical purposes do not smoke it. Most ingest it with food. I have know a few people that have used is and some it helps and others it does not, just like any other drug.
NYC is becoming a nanny state. How about continuing to educate people and putting the scarce $$ into preventative programs instead of legislating laws that we all know are not going to be followed. Kids are going to smoke, drink, drive distracted, eat junk food, have sex whether there are laws in place or not. Adolescence is about taking risks and by making it illegal it only increases the attractiveness of said behaviour in a lot of cases.
Fitness Minutes: (161,455)
10,790 11/1/13 8:01 A
NYC needs to stop regulating everything. If people are stupid enough to choose smoking in this century, no law will stop them.
Fitness Minutes: (0)
306 11/1/13 7:40 A
I think raising the age is good because it will help relieve peer pressure. Kids may think I don't want to get caught with a fake I.D. and have a record and ruin my chances of getting into a good college.
I also disagree with the poster who said we need to be concerned about giving a lot of support to smokers and help them quit. This hand holding to help people stop smoking and lose weight is pathetic in my view.
People need to take responsibility for themselves and stop blaming lack of support for things. I was a smoker from age 14 to 22 before labels were on cigarettes that it was bad for you. I quit when news came out that this stuff could cause health problems and I came down with bronchitis because of it.
I would also like to see the age of driving raised to 18 aas I think it would save teenage deaths caused by car accidents.
Smoking is an addiction. That fact needs to be respected.
I'm an ex smoker and despite being smoke free for nearly 5 years I still crave them most days. Even now when I feel stressed or worried or I need to relax the first thing that pops into my head is "have a cigarette" Its not easy to just stop, it takes a lot of willpower, support and help. There needs to be better support for those who want to quit rather than just some crazy idea that making them off limits will stop people smoking.
NY City feels like quite the nanny state to a friend of mine who lives there. He's not a smoker, drinker or a fan of too large soda drinks but he thinks all the laws are out of control there. I'm not a smoker so I don't have a stake in it but politicians need to focus on helping get this country right instead of making plenty of laws. If you are going to smoke you'll find a way to do it regardless of whatever law is passed.
Fitness Minutes: (40)
992 11/1/13 5:43 A
I don't smoke and it is a little hard for me to care about what the minimum age to buy them is...I do agree the same ones will likely manage to get their cigarettes, whether somebody buys them for them (you might be surprised to find how many parents actually buy cigarettes for teens still at home going to school), whether they cross the state line, or whether they steal or do other criminal activity to get them.
With that said, I find it rather interesting that in the USA, it seems cigarette smoking is getting closer and closer to being totally illegal, one law at a time. And at the same time, marijuana is becoming legal in more and more areas. Sure they want to say it has medicinal purposes, which maybe it does but I'm far from convinced that it is better at controlling pain and other ailments than what we already have out there. It is still something that you "smoke" and I think it is well established that SMOKING anything is NOT good for you. So I don't see why there is a big push to legalize marijuana while making cigarettes practically illegal. I'm pretty sure Marijuana impairs judgement, etc, for drivers more so than cigarettes do.
I'm not bothered by this. I think that the harder it is for kids to get cigarettes, the better. And the older they are when they can do so easily the less likely they are to see smoking as socially acceptable and to get caught up in it themselves.
Fitness Minutes: (28,168)
1,778 10/31/13 7:59 P
We have arbitrary ages for all kinds of things. 16 to drive, 5 for kindergarten 14 to get married in some states with parental permission, so why not arbitrary ages for smoking and drinking?,
Personally, I'm waiting for our politicians to grow a pair and ban the sale of cigarettes. If you want to smoke you would have to grow your own.
The vast, vast, majority of 18 year olds are not in the military and will never fight for our country. Just because you are old enough to be in the military does not mean you should be able to smoke or drink. We need the people in our military to be healthy, so they shouldn't be smoking and drinking anyway. We don't need our soldiers addicted to alcohol or cigarettes. We definitely don't need them out in a tough situation, thinking more about their next drink or cigarette instead of thinking about where they are and what they are doing.
Besides, you cannot be President until you are 35. Want to run for a spot in the US House of Representatives? You have to be 25. US Senate? You must be 30. Most states have minimum ages for candidates as well and, for the majority of offices, it's not 18. In many states, you have to be 30 to run for Governor. As a society, we recognize that 18 year olds are not really mature and do not make mature decisions and we know that we cannot really count on 21 year olds to make mature decisions, either. That's why you cannot run for a lot of offices until you are a certain age and that's one of the reasons why we don't let 18 year olds drink.
Personally, I think the drinking and smoking ages should be 25, minimum. 30 would be better, IMO. Better yet, we'd outlaw cigarettes entirely so no one had to breathe in the second hand smoke.
Its 18 for both smoking and drinking in my country. We have some of the most restrictive laws in the world re smoking - and some of the highest prices too - but it hasn't stopped young people wanting to smoke. The rates for all smokers are going down except for teens. I think education is the key or maybe we need to make smoking as socially unacceptable as possible so people won't want to do it.
Fitness Minutes: (13,947)
2,072 10/31/13 10:48 A
I smoked for years here in NYS and I started when I was young so I know, speaking from experience, kids will get the cigarettes no matter what the age limit is. Just like alcohol they do it long before they are of age and most parents seem to have no problem with it.
If kids are determined to smoke they will get cigarettes just as we did when we were young and stupid.
Fitness Minutes: (87,796)
11,706 10/31/13 10:28 A
another unneeded law!
Fitness Minutes: (59,059)
3,509 10/31/13 10:26 A
First of all, that change is only a proposal by Mayor Bloomberg and it's only for NYC. It has not been enacted into a law yet and I don't think it will be.
Secondly, I agree that the age shouldn't be changed. In fact, I think the drinking age should be 18 too. 21 seems so arbitrary.
Fitness Minutes: (31,937)
3,663 10/31/13 9:48 A
I thought you already had to be 21 to drink alcohol in US (It's 18 in UK). So it doesn't seem illogical to make the age for both smoking and drinking the same. But will it change anything? I understand that initially when the age for buying smoking products was raised from 16 to 18 in UK there was a drop in teenage smoking, but I don't know whether this trend has continued. The fact is if people are determined to smoke they'll find a way.
Fitness Minutes: (18,507)
1,377 10/31/13 9:44 A
I agree. I see no point in raising the age to 21.
Fitness Minutes: (145,595)
3,957 10/31/13 9:37 A
Most 18 year olds can figure out how to cross state lines. Another level of unnecessary criminalization. Cigarettes are already too expensive in New York - why buy them there anyway?
New York is putting into place a new minimum age for purchasing cigarettes to 21. I don't smoke or drink, and I realize it's to save young lives, but if you're old enough to vote and die for your country in the military 18, you're old enough.
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