Where there's smoke, there's ire, especially on Great American Smokeout Day when the nation's 46.8 million puffers had a choice between a day of abstinence and smoldering recalcitrance.
Smokers at Southwestern Bell and several other companies were told today that they no longer have a choice, as tough anti-smoking policies were announced or went into effect.
In Washington, Rep. Chester G. Atkins (D-Mass.) introduced "The Adolescent Tobacco Education Act" that would ban the sale of tobacco products to anyone under 18. It would also outlaw all vending machine sales of tobacco products and require that existing drug education programs warn students of the dangers of tobacco.
This was the 11th annual Smokeout, and the American Cancer Society confessed that it is becoming harder to win converts.
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"We're at a day and age when anyone who's smoking knows the health risk. We don't have to hit them over the head with the fact that they're killing themselves. They know that," said Margaret Murphy, spokeswoman for the society's New Hampshire chapter.