- Published: August 23, 2022
- Updated: August 23, 2022
- Level: College Admission
- Language: English
- Downloads: 35
Manifesto for the Eradication of Weapons of Lung Destruction How would you like it if every lamppost and mail box in town emitted puffs of smoke into your face as you walked to work in your neat nice suit, or better yet, what if every tree in your favorite park poured out whiffs of smoke every few seconds How would you like that Where you go for a breath of fresh air Where would you get reprieve These are the questions that the millions of victims of ETS (environmental tobacco smoke) have to ask themselves everyday as their eyes, noses and lungs are pummeled with the toxic fumes generously and thoughtfully exuded by their fellow humans – coworkers, friends, partners, strangers – all over our cities and towns.
Yes, we live in a democratic society and are blessed with many freedoms and all that they entail: the freedom to vote, even for an incompetent government; the freedom to eat what we want, including unhealthy food; the freedom to smoke, and to slowly poison ourselves with nicotine. The greatness of freedom is that we are free to commit atrocities upon ourselves, yet not many people would sign up for the freedom to harm or kill as many people around them as possible. Why then are smokers allowed to do so
We hunt down terrorists because they take innocent lives; the US declared war not only on Al Qaeda who took under 3000 lives in the World Trade Center bombings on September 11, 2001, but also on terrorists in general, including Afghanistan and Iraq. So why do we allow environmental terrorists, viz. smokers to escape with using weapons of lung destruction to take the lives of 3000 non-smokers per year, and not to mention the 35000 who die from heart disease every year The environmental Chernobyl disaster engendered public outrage and instigated new laws, yet we hesitate to implement laws to ban the equally dangerous and insidious smoking in public places, which is associated with approximately 14000 new asthma cases in children and 230000 new cases of bronchitis and pneumonia in children under 18 months old. Scandalous!
If someone were to consistently and systematically poison the city’s water supply, no one would think it strange that lawmakers would arrest the perpetrators and enforce laws to prevent its recurrence. No one would invoke the 5th amendment. Why then are smokers allowed to poison our air supply with a dangerous cocktail of more than 4000 chemicals – more of 50 of which are carcinogens – in the name of individual freedom One of the basic tenets of the human rights declaration is that our individual freedom should not infringe on that of another human being. Then unless only smokers are human beings and the rest of us are delicately minced liver then it is absolutely atrocious that they be allowed to smoke in public places and prove a nuisance to the general non-smoking public.
Indeed, a well-meaning citizen understands that at a certain hour of the night, even if his party in the privacy of his home is in full swing, he must respect those around him by turning down his music and/or ending his fun. It might prove a nuisance to him to do so – yes, it limits his freedom, and he is in his home – but it shows a sense of respect and responsibility, one of the fundamental principles of human co-existence. In the event that he lacks this social conscience, there are laws in place to protect the neighbors. Where, then, are the laws to protect the public from noisome cigarette smoke
We know the dangers of smoking, yet for the sake of political correctness we namby-pamby around the issue and in effect give one set of people the right to exercise a dangerous habit (both to themselves and others). Yes, smokers have the right to pollute their own lungs, but they shouldn’t have the right to pollute ours. Let’s do something really environmental friendly and ban smoking in public places.
CDC. Second National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals: Tobacco Smoke. Atlanta, GA: U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, CDC, National Center for Environmental Health; 2003: 80. NCEH Pub No. 03-0022.
National Cancer Institute. Health Effects of Exposure to Environment Tobacco Smoke. Smoking and Tobacco Control Monograph No. 10. Bethesda, MD: U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute; 1999. NIH Pub. No. 99-4645.
National Toxicology Program. 10th Report on Carcinogens. Research Triangle Park, NC: U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, National Toxicology Program, December 2002.
U. S. Environmental Protection Agency. Respiratory Health Effects of Passive Smoking: Lung Cancer and Other Disorders. Washington, DC: U. S. Environmental Protection Agency; 1992. Pub. No. EPA/600/6-90/006F.