Are cigars becoming a thing at DHS?

Cigars, cigarettes, cigarillos, pipes, chewing tobacco, and hookah pens are all forms of tobacco becoming increasingly popular among teens at DHS. Some forms are more prominently found than others within the school scene. The guys who are rumored to do “dip” before practice or the folks who stand on the corner and smoke their cigarettes can surely attest to that.

It would be rare, though not inconceivable, to find a teenager who sits down with a pipe after a long day to relax. According to ABC News, despite laws to keep students away from cigarettes, 34 percent of high school students and 15 percent of middle school students use tobacco products.

With all of the information that is given to teens warding them way from tobacco use, why is it that so many gravitate toward the substance?

Some non-using teens speculate on why other teenagers start smoking tobacco.

Sophomore Victoria Cameron said cigarettes could be viewed as “a form of stress relief. It’s a form of control that teenagers want to have.”

“People start smoking in order to fit in with their friends and continue because they become addicted to it,” said junior Brooke Spencer.

Rebellion also carries a significant weight in the actions of many teenagers.

Junior Matt Miller said, “I think kids smoke cigarettes because their parents told them not to.”

Junior Tanner Waltz said he thought teenagers smoke cigarettes, “to be cool,” and “to fit in.” This suggests a certain novelty and popularity that goes along with tobacco use among teens.

“I don’t think I would ever smoke anything, but if I were too, I would smoke a cigar,” said senior Sam Steed.

Teenagers who partake in tobacco use have different explanations. Senior Jacob Pereira said that his smoking of cigars “is more so an occasional whim because it looks classy,” than a habit or an addiction.

“It’s not really a cool thing,” said senior Nick Classen. “It’s more of a social thing.”

Classen explained that oftentimes the reason he smokes is because it’s a common interest. “It’s a lot better than smoking cigarettes.”

“Smoking cigars is just really classy,” said senior Colin Demello.

University of Massachusetts Dartmouth student Evan Raposa said, “Smoking cigarettes was an excuse for me to go outside and get fresh air, even though I got smoke too. And on college campus where everyone smokes, it’s a quick chat that gives everyone a common interest.”

Motivation varies from student to student. At DHS just as it is elsewhere, tobacco use is far from foreign.

According to research done by, studies have found that nearly all first use of tobacco takes place before high school graduation. While tobacco has been regarded as such a bad thing for as long as many of today’s teenagers have been alive, it is intriguing and shocking how prevalent tobacco use is among today’s teens.