Smoking ban is not the answer: iLIVE
As an ex smoker of 30+ cigarettes a day, I know how difficult it is to stop.
I smoked for years, from the age of 17, with resultant burning eyes, skin turning yellow, stained teeth and fingers, and a constant, dull headache. Yet it isn’t fair to say that people are too weak to stop.
Tobacco companies are the culprits in introducing even more habit-forming substances to the cigarettes, and employing specialists to target the young market to make it seem ‘cool’ to smoke. There are various movies about court cases against tobacco companies etc., and research about the contents of cigarettes is easily obtainable on Google.
Yes we all have a choice and I’m not going into peer pressure etc etc now. I’m just saying that I stopped smoking 35 years ago after going through a week-long 'aversion' course, without which I wouldn’t have been able to do so – I tried various times on my own. It is more difficult to stop smoking than for an alcoholic to stop drinking – especially if the smoker is also psychologically addicted to cigarettes.
Even after 35 years I can well remember the feelings of disorientation, sleeping for hours on end etc. All the withdrawal symptoms.
What I am suggesting here (and I’m taking myself as an example) is that most smokers actually want to stop, but it is too difficult without help. Being attacked all the time, puts them on the defensive. Instead of introducing new laws why doesn’t the Government rather assist people in free workshops, or at a nominal fee, to help people to stop smoking.
It needs specially trained people and a scientific approach. Treat smokers with sympathy, not as criminals. They are the products of advertising – freely allowed by the Government. And let’s not forget the taxes the Government gets from every packet of cigarettes sold. At every annual budget, the “luxury” taxes are always mentioned – put up the taxes on cigarettes and alcohol.
Where do the tobacco companies get “new” smokers all the time? From the vulnerable youth thinking it’s “cool”. And where do they get that stupid idea? From the adverts, of course. Take action against the real culprits, the unscrupulous tobacco companies. Invest in a campaign for schools to put learners off smoking.