Anti-smoking Nazis and king's x(long winded)
patrick Driscoll (PDris1995@AOL.COM)
Sat, 5 Apr 1997 15:00:57 -0500
I have been away and only just got through about a week's worth of
postings. I had to reply to some of the things I have seen about smoking.
I'm a smoker and not proud of it. I have found that I can make it for
several hours at a time without, but then that old monkey starts twitching in
earnest and I have to sneak away to hide my shame from the luckier and the
holier. Not to mention that when I have the uniform on I have a very hard
time doing certain bad habits, so I guess I am slowly improving.
Some of the comments I have seen however remind me of a Stephen King short
story that he wrote years ago, concerning the hunting down and killing of the
last smokers. I don't think that it has happened as yet, but sooner or later
a plea of "Not guilty of murder because the pig was smoking." will be heard
in a court of law.
I, as do many others do the best to hide my addiction from others,
especially Scouts and when caught I go to great lengths to try to make sure
that they know that I made a bad mistake in my late teens and have been
paying for it since and that they should never try. I realize that if a Scout
sees me, or anyone, smoking that it is a bad influence.
However, I do very much object to the moraly superior tone that some will
take. Frankly, now that it is politicaly incorrect to dislike someone
becasuse of most of the reasons that people have used to hate one another, a
lot of people have channeled their need to despise toward smokers. Over the
past few years there has grown an increasingly millitant, rude and just plain
I know that I and most smokers try to be polite and inoffensive and some
of us go to great lengths to try to give up the habit or at least minimize
the effects on non-smokers. I know also that there are those who do not and
will retaliate against requests to not smoke. They are wrong, as are the
people who use smoking as an excuse for their own poor behavior on either
side of the ash-tray.
Smokers know that the stuff is harmful and they have heard many, many,
many times that it will kill them. We have also been subject to comments and
behavior that (as someone else pointed out) if done to someone because of
most any other reason, would be grounds for a lawsuit, or simpler, a smack
across the mouth. (Them's fightin' words, pilgrim.)
All the carping and crying about tax dollars being wasted to treat
people whose illness may have likely been smoking-relating is useless as is
all the holier-than-thou stuff. My reaction to most all of it is "Would you
like some cheese with that whine?"
You object for tax-money to be used to treat someone who you suspect or
can prove is a smoker? Well, I object to my tax money being spent on health
care for anyone who voted for Nixon. I object to having my tax-money spent to
help people who drive below the speed limit on the highway live longer. I
object to giving medical treatment of any kind, no matter who is paying for
it, to people who start advertising Christmas in July. (Last year a
collector's dish with a Christmas theme was in July. As Elmo learned, its no
fun if it is Christmas every day. But, I digress.)
My smoke hurts you no matter how far away I am? What about the motor oil
you have spilled or worse, the impression you give to others that a person
can be degraded and yourself somehow elevated because they got trapped into a
bad habit and haven't been able to find a way out?
Let's lobby for tax money to be spent on getting people's addiction to
tobacco cured. By all means tax the profit made from tobacco sales to fight
the weed. But stop doing dirty things and making snide remarks to other
people just because they are smokers and you are not.
And for smokers that can't or won't have enough control and courtesy to
avoid poisoning others with either their second hand smoke or their example,
then by all means, leave. We do not have the right to damage some young
person's life by our poor example just because what we are doing is legal. If
they won't leave of their own free will, then throw them out for violating
regulations! I'll help.
I promise that I will do my best to keep my addiction out of your face. I
also promise that I will keep trying to quit. I'd like to hear a couple of
smoke-haters promise that they will behave in at least a civil manner and
give encouragement and perhaps even help those of us who want to get away
from the tobacco monkey. Try walking a mile in our lungs. But wear protective
Patrick Driscoll Time flies like the wind but fruit flies like bannanas.
(But they don't
CM P244 smoke them ;-) )
Alamo Area Council
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City