All human beings survive through a sense of influence. Each day, they are subjected to innumerable persuasion challenges from other human beings, organizations, and interest groups. People tend to perceive persuasion as something that an individual does to another individual, rather than what an individual does to him/herself. For instance, some colleges allow students to smoke within their compounds while others do not accept such behavior within their compounds. Everybody knows the effects of smoking, and colleges, being the epitome of knowledge, should contribute to curbing cigarette smoking among students. People have the right to do what pleases them, as long as the rights of others are considered. In arguing about whether colleges should permit smoking or not, language is fundamental in persuading individuals to accept one side of the argument. This study will argue why colleges should not allow students to smoke within their compound.
Why Students Should not be Allowed to Smoke in Campus
Smoking is legal in many countries, and many students can argue that they have the right to do what they desire as adults. However, students should understand that college gates are not designed to keep them within the college compound but to keep them safe. While in college, students should be under strict rules, and one of the rules should be not to smoke within the compound. Many college students turn to smoke to manage depression and stress (Hales 307). Several studies have linked smoking with depression, which leads to low life satisfaction. The college environment should not allow such behaviors to escalate.
Smoking should not be allowed within the college compound because it affects not only the smokers but also those who are closer to them. Smokers should not be selfish with their lifestyle, as they should also mind about others who are closer to them. Environmental tobacco smoke has been ranked the third-leading preventable cause of death, behind cigarette smoking and alcohol (Hales 309). Some students who did not smoke before joining colleges may learn the habit from their colleagues who are smokers. One in every four students who did not learn to smoke in high school becomes habitual smokers due to influence from his/her peers. Sometimes, people misuse their freedom without knowing that choices have consequences. It is not easy for students to evade the consequences of smoking. Thus, colleges should ensure that students do not smoke within the college compound.
Every student has the right to stay in an environment that is free from contamination. Sitting next to a student who is smoking, or even inhaling air that is contaminated with smoke is hazardous to an individual’s health. Colleges should be at the forefront to condemn smoking within their compounds. Smoking is socially unacceptable behavior that risks users’ lives, as well as those who associate with them. According to Hales, cigarette smoking has become a major cause of diseases, as well as deaths in all population groups (307). Each year, approximately 2.1 million women in America die premature deaths due to smoking. With cancer-awareness campaigns all over the colleges, it is logical for colleges to restrict smoking within their compounds.
Students should stop listening to some of their leaders who use propaganda to fit their self-interests. They invite other students to rebel against the college administrations, claiming that they are infringing their rights. A person or the group holding such propaganda endeavors to pass information across, without caring whether the information will attract criticism or not. Students are deceived by propaganda since they do not distinguish it when they see it. They are fooled by propaganda that appeals to their emotions instead of reasons (Miller 1). Students should be reasonable to understand the consequences of smoking and avoid leaders who are not health-conscious.
Propaganda can also be conveyed through false information. Male students claim that smoking creates an impression of masculinity and reduces anxiety while female students feel that smoking assists them in controlling their weight (Hales 307). This just a hypothesis with no substantiation. The only proof is that exposure to cigarette smoke enhances the chances of becoming a smoker. Many students start smoking as a joke, and they end up becoming addicted to smoke. They realize too late that the pleasure they were looking for has become a burden that they cannot leave.
Many students have also been manipulated by adverts that employ doublespeak to convince smokers that smoking is not harmful. Numerous adverts on television do not point out the risks of cigarette smoking. Cigarette manufacturers prefer college students because college students do not mind about their health as adults do and can spend more on cigarettes than other things. According to Lutz, doublespeak avoids responsibilities and does not allow the expansion of thoughts (226). Doublespeak normally comes out in four forms. Euphemism is one form of doublespeak, where words are devised to evade harsh tones or offensive authenticity. Jargons are also utilized in doublespeak to communicate to a certain group of people, especially in a similar profession or class. Lutz asserts that doublespeak does not result from careless use of language or thinking, but it involves using a language that seems to express the truth, although it does not do so (227).
Everyone knows the dangers of smoking. Colleges are the foundations of knowledge, and should not overlook the issue of smoking among students. Television possesses remarkable authority to influence its viewers, producers are apprehensive of nature, as well as the accuracy of words in persuading people to stick to their programs. College management and administration should use television and radio to warn students about the consequences of smoking. Words used for entertainment and advertising should be simple to allow more people to be hooked to TV shows and programs. College administrations are not ignorant of human rights, but they care about the health of their students. Healthy students can perform better in their studies than unhealthy students.
Traditionally, many colleges had allowed smoking within their compound, but today, national health organizations, such as American College Health Association, have proposed that colleges restrict smoking within their compounds (Hales 307). These organizations have indicated that many people spend a lot of money treating preventable diseases that people get through careless behaviors. These organizations have also advised colleges to disallow the sale, endorsement, or commercialization of tobacco products within the campus environment. Many colleges that consider the interests of students first have hindered the advice, but others are still contemplating doing so. If health agencies are against smoking on campuses, colleges should heed their advice and stop the spread of preventable diseases such as lung cancer and heart disease.
Establishing a smoking zone is a good idea, but does not restrict students from engaging in smoking. Students have the habit of breaking rules, and college administrators have to keep an eye on students to ensure that they adhere strictly to the rules. Unprincipled students can fall into the trap of smokers and engage in the behavior unwillingly. In most cases, the urge to smoke does not wait, and students will waste a lot of time moving to the smoking zone instead of concentrating on classwork. Lack of concentration in class has to lead to poor performance in class. In addition, the relationship between smokers and nonsmokers may become worse if smokers spend most of their free time in the smoking areas. Therefore, a total prohibition on smoking is preferable to establishing a smoking area.
Why Smoking should be allowed in Campuses
Establishing a smoke-free college is extremely difficult, as the college administration may face the rebellion of students who perceive themselves as adults. Banning smoking on campuses seems like infringing other people’s rights. Although students do not own the right to smoke, they have the right to do whatever they wish to, as they are adults. Americans are trusted to recognize what is good and what is immoral. They can make decisions of what to believe and what to accept. Freedom opens the path of creativity and solutions and enables change to come through choice, rather than coercion (Freedom to Read Statement). The pressure toward conformity can create problems of limitation that democracy and culture form their bases. Students should enjoy freedom, just as adults, as they are perceived to apply logic while engaging in behaviors such as smoking.
Historically, prohibitions do not usually work, particularly when they target college students. If the law that restricts underage drinking has never worked, the law to ban smoking in colleges is unrealistic. The only time smoking should be banned on campuses is when the administration is protecting students from inhaling second-hand smoke. However, this can be eliminated by designing smoking zones within the college compound. A smoking policy should be implemented to guide smoking areas. Having smoking zones will enable students to carry on with their smoking habits without disturbing other students who do not smoke. Sometimes the smokers may throw burning cigarettes carelessly within the college compound, causing damage through fire. Hence, smoking zones can prevent incidences of fire, as well as confining smoke in one place where other people will not feel threatened by it.
Smoking should not be allowed in college compounds because it affects other students who do not smoke. Colleges should contribute to teaching students morals behaviors, on top of intellectual knowledge. Cigarette smoking is widespread among college students and allowing them to release all that smoke in the college compound may interfere with the health of students who do not engage in such behavior. Cigarette smoking has become a major cause of preventable deaths, and colleges have a role to play in preventing such deaths. Enjoying one’s freedom includes doing what one perceives as appropriate. However, students should not be denied the right to do what they deem right and admirable, as long as they do not interfere with the happiness of other students. Students should enjoy the freedom of right to decide on what is desirable, and what is unethical. They should also remember that freedom also has limits, as lack of limitations will lead to unpleasant consequences.
“The Freedom to Read Statement.” American Library Association, Advocacy, and Legislation (2014). Web 13 November 2014
Hales, Dianne R. Invitation to Wellness: Making Healthy Choices. Australia: Thomson Wadsworth, 2006. Print.
Lutz, William. “Doubts about doublespeak.” Exploring language (1989): 225-228.
Miller, Clyde Raymond. How to detect propaganda. Ed. Sri Ram Sharma. 1937.