Thursday, November 30, 2006

Let's All Take Up Smoking

Yea, yea, it's bad for you. It can kill you (and will if you smoke and live long enough). So are a lot of things. It is bad for others around you--primarily as an inconvenience. Actually the biggest reason I see not to smoke is because of the dismissive-of-human-life huge tobacco companies. Aside from that, however, look at the benefits. Smoking is a conversation starter (from asking for a light to being asked to do it elsewhere). Smoking curbs appetites, helping the disgustingly overweight USofA to drop a few and keep 'em off--hell, we're probably all fat because we decided to get so healthy by not smoking. Low levels of nicotine potentially help to keep the mind more acute with age. It will piss off those damn hippies (unless it's cannabis you've sparked). And it provides a necessary source of tax revenue to city and state governments that have become increasingly wary of taxing anything that resembles "the wealthy," and we all know that cigarettes are the tobacco choice of the poor and working classes.

This post is the result of this article on a smoking ban in the Virgin Islands which includes a ban w/in 50' of a doorway or window to an enclosed public space. I understand non-smokers not wanting to be around smokers, and I can even agree with keeping kid friendly areas smoke free, but I don't think that government should dictate where people can and cannot smoke except for within government buildings (and airplanes), and I do realize that the British Virgin Islands are not US territory, but Cal, NY, Chicago and many more here have enacted similar measures. If I owned a bar/restaurant/etc. and wanted to allow smoking then I do not understand why government thinks that it can tell me "no." It is not their place. People who don't want to be around smokers: don't come and don't apply for jobs. It can kill you, sure, but so can cheese and bacon, and so can beer wine and liquor, and so can biking to and from work, and so can running a marathon... Point is, I see no reason to demonize people who smoke or cast them to the fringes of society, especially since, from personal experience, they are much friendlier people.

Tobacco companies on the other hand...


Michael L. Heien said...

The should be demonized because smokers are spawns of Satan. Who else but a demon would choose to light a "cancer stick" in front of his mouth. I am add for proposition 2, which would round up all smokers, and force them to move to Canada.

Of course the preceding was a rant, but seriously the libertarian in me agrees that businesses should be able to allow their clientel to smoke. But I love going to a bar and not having to come home smelling like an ash tray. I am conflicted.

Jacob said...

Yea, but it's a choice to go. I'd love it if I could drink lots of brandy, scotch, red wine etc. and wake up invigorated the next morning, but it ain't gonna happen, and forcing liquor companies to rid their products of those hangover inducing impurities is not the proper recourse (never minding that many of those "impurities" enhance flavor).