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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

April 26, 2014 at 4:11 PM

Raising the smoking age: Gives time to educate teenagers

As a high-school student, I’d like to applaud the attempt at raising the tobacco-buying age [“Raise tobacco-buying age to 21, county boards asks Legislature,” Local News, April 23].

It’s supported by Pat Godfrey’s story: Even after quitting smoking, he still got cancer years later. Knowing this is very common, we need to make a push to stop this. One of the ways we can stop this is by raising the smoking age to 21. Students now are falling into bad habits such as smoking, drinking and partying. Making smoking less accessible to teens could lower the rates of other bad habits.

I’d personally like to take this a step further by suggesting that all high schools offer help to teens who have smoking addictions. This help can goes as far as classes and counseling to these students, or just showing them what the results of smoking can lead to, such as cancer, bad breath and lower life expectancy. By doing these things, hopefully we can ensure teen smoking rates are cut in half, or completely stopped.

By stopping smoking in teens, we could not only reduce the death rate, but we could also reduce the cancer rates, and much more.

With the tobacco-buying age raised to 21, if students do happen to start smoking, we can at least give them a few more years to understand the effects of smoking. We need to make an effort to raise the smoking age, and this is how we start.

Logan Johnson, Everett

Comments | More in tobacco | Topics: cigarettes, health, Logan Johnson

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