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What is tobacco?

I don't mean botanically. I mean as a consumer product. There's a really interesting little article on Slate.com, talking about the increasing restrictions on the smoking of tobacco, and the corresponding shift of both consumers (primarily cigarette smokers) and the industry toward forms of smokeless tobacco -- including little pellets that have had some of the carcinogens removed.

The article asks (and doesn't answer, which I like) the question: if tobacco use doesn't affect one's neighbors (since it isn't smoked) and isn't particularly dangerous (since it isn't particularly carcinogenic), will society still want to discourage its use? That is, when it's strictly a personal nicotine-delivery system for addicts, will it still be the bete noir it is now? What will distinguish it from caffeine?

It's an interesting read.

Comments

  • I'm sure it will still be stigmatized, along with whatever else they decide is bad for us and can regulate. Of course, you never know. In 10 years drinking a soda could be as frowned upon as lighting up!
  • phobicsquirrelphobicsquirrel Posts: 7,349
    I'm sure it'll be like anything else, is someone doesn't like it, there will be a stink about it. Then a senator or two will bring up an idea to ban it or tax the hell out of it.
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