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Passive Smoking - Surely Now It All Becomes Clear?

April 11, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 138

The advert in questions depicts a room filled with smoke, as though the house is on fire. Eventually, the advert focuses on a small child, and the advert informs us that 80% of cigarette smoke is invisible. The idea is that though it looks like the child is not passively breathing your cigarette smoke, they may in fact be doing just that.

Now in starting to write this article it occurred to me that it would be difficult to remain unbiased. Perhaps I shouldn't be too bothered about being unbiased, after all I represent me and no one else. But I decided in this case I would try to be, as undoubtedly some smokers will read this and I don't wish to offend. But remember in reading this, my concern is for the health of the general public, and more importantly, our children.

One thing that still shocks, and angers me to some extent, is that Scotland was able to implement a smoking ban before England. In the land of Haggis and the Deep Fried Mars Bar, our cousins to the north implemented a law very much conducive to our good health, before England. I wish we had done it sooner, as now when I go for a night out I don't wake up stinking of smoke. When I eat in a restaurant, I don't lose my appetite after a lungful of carcinogenic smoke. Meals and nights out are now a much more pleasant experience for the change.

Yet, I can't help but feel it has just moved the problem along the line rather than stamp the problem out. Now instead of having a side order of smoke with my salmon, (not the kind of smoked salmon I would hope for in a restaurant) I get it as an unwanted desert when I exit the restaurant, as the poor, smoke deprived clientele rush to get their fix at the door. The same is much more apparent now in any town shopping centre. As you exit the larger establishments you are forced to navigate through a haze of foul smelling smoke. Being somewhat angered by this, I can't help thinking one day my exaggerated fake coughs will get me into some kind of altercation or trouble!

The basic conundrum is a tricky one though. Smokers would argue that it is their right to smoke if they want to, and as the law allows, it is their right to smoke outdoors in public areas. This much is technically true, and purely speaking in technicalities, you can't really argue with it. But surely, the rights of those wanting to breathe clean air should come as a higher priority? And as the problem seems only to be a real issue in public areas, when will common sense prevail and see a relatively comprehensive public smoking ban enforced? I say relatively comprehensive, as we cannot expect smokers to go cold turkey from nicotine when out and about. I would even suggest large bus-stop style smoking shelters in built up areas which allow public smoking but protect the lungs of those who don't wish to be exposed to it.

This all brings me on to the most important point though. In the thick of all this, I must see the following ten times every time I go shopping in a town centre. Mum/dad with a cigarette in their hand, at waist level, mere inches from their infant child's face. This is the section of the article where I need the most effort to restrain my anger. We all know smoke rises....of course...but you are outdoors, there are breezes, drafts of air when people walk by you in a hundred different directions...your child is ingesting nicotine and smoke, and irrespective of the quantities, this is not fair on the child. How can it be when the child has no choice? Does this not constitute abuse in some degree? Coming full circle now...back to that advert, with that knowledge now publicly available, I would implore people to rethink this, and stop smoking now, at least in the vicinity of non smokers, and more importantly, children. Just think, even if the research is poor, the statistic possibly inaccurate, why would you take the risk?

Consider this also, we constantly have complaints about waiting times in the NHS, problems with our healthcare service. With reduced smoking, we would take away a percentage of those waiting times and resources, to be diverted to health issues which are not self for thought.

All of my life since ten, I have competed in sport, worked on my fitness etc. Now firmly into adulthood, healthy living and eating are important issues to me. This article is informed by personal experiences, opinion and research gained over all this time.

Source: EzineArticles
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