Feedback: Should Smoking Be 21 And Up?


Story Updated: May 5, 2013

Two New York state legislators from the New York City area are proposing raising the age at which someone can buy cigarettes from 18 to 21.

The proposal comes on the heels of a similiar proposal in New York City.

One study showed raising the minimum age - it's 19 in a handful of other states - reduces smoking among the very young (14 to 17 year olds) by 67 percent, and among 18 to 20 year olds by 55 percent.

The idea quickly picked up support in the Watertown area. Rodger Hicks of Transitional Living Services, which helps young people, said "If you make the ability (to purchase) less, then less kids will start at a younger age."

Young smokers disagreed. Jazzmine Shumaker, a 17 year old in Watertown and a smoker, said "It's very easy for me to get cigarettes. I can get people to buy them for me, there's certain places that don't i.d.

"You know, there's 16 year olds going out and buying cigarettes at places that won't i.d. them."

To see, hear more on the topic, click on the picture to watch Caitlin Cissne's report.

To read more about the state legislators proposing the change, read CBS News coverage here.

For a slightly different take, read the coverage from "Cigar Aficionado."

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