The Great American Spit Out is observed annually on the Thursday of the third full week of February. This year’s event occurs on February 23. It is a day to encourage people to stop using smokeless tobacco products, especially veterans. The day’s primary objective is to provide users with sufficient resources to help them stop using such products. Tobacco plants are grown for their leaves. The nicotine found in tobacco leaves is a highly addictive chemical. Tobacco can be smoked, chewed, or sniffed. The Great American Spit Out is the ideal day to begin combating nicotine and tobacco product addiction. Users of smokeless tobacco are encouraged to quit, even if only for the day.
The background of The Great American Spit Out
Humans and possibly other mammals have fought against addiction for aeons. It is a naturally occurring response in mammals. We become addicted to numerous organic and inorganic chemicals. Since the dawn of evolution, tobacco addiction has afflicted humanity more than any other substance. Tobacco addiction can manifest through chewing, sniffing, and smoking tobacco products.
The history of tobacco is intricately linked to the history of trade routes and human migration. When Christopher Columbus first landed on the American continent in 1492, the native tribes presented him with tobacco leaves and other materials. The Portuguese established the first commercial tobacco plantation in Brazil in the 15th century. Within another century, tobacco became immensely popular worldwide.
During the Revolutionary War, tobacco products gained in popularity in the United States. People soon became aware of the addictive nature and health risks of tobacco. Numerous nations discovered the harmful effects and addictive nature of tobacco, as well as the nicotine it contains. Sir Francis Bacon observed the addictive properties of tobacco in 1610. The history of tobacco parallels that of human conflicts. Wherever wars raged, individuals chewed or smoked tobacco. The Great American Spit Out addresses these veterans’ dependence on tobacco and its negative effects in particular. As a result, we observe this day to encourage and challenge everyone to reduce or quit tobacco use.
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5 IMPORTANT FACTS ABOUT CIGARETTES
Tobacco kills eighty percent of users.
Tobacco contains nineteen different carcinogens.
More than eight million people die annually due to direct and indirect tobacco exposure.
Use of smokeless tobacco is more hazardous than use of traditional tobacco.
Tobacco use kills more people than malaria, tuberculosis, and HIV combined.
THE GREAT AMERICAN SPIT OUT DATES