Smoking is something that I have never understood – spending hard earned cash on sticks stuffed with grass, standing out in all elements, lighting them up and inhaling the smokey fumes into our lungs – it sounds crazy. But what’s even crazier is the fact that they make you smell, give you bad breath, stain your teeth, cost you money, give you cancer… and yet people still smoke them! The poor people (like myself) who make the intelligent choice to avoid them, are then forced to breath in any second hand smoke from inconsiderate smokers who decide to light up next to us at the bus stop. I think it’s disgraceful.
In 2007, a new law was passed in the UK which banned smoking in enclosed public places. Its main purpose was to cut the amount of deaths from second hand smoke – Doctors estimated that second-hand smoke killed more than 600 people a year (BBC News Online, 1 July 2007). The government also hoped that it would help smokers to quit and also discourage children from taking up the habit . Since then, going to a busy club has been a much nicer experience. I no longer return home stinking of smoke, my clothes are no longer at risk of burn marks, I don’t have to change my bed sheets the morning after going out because they do not stink of smoke anymore – what a breath of fresh air!
So why are some people still against this ban? Well, for smokers I guess the ban is very inconvenient – they now have to contemplate the rain and cold if they want to light up whilst in a bar (boohoo). Some people also argue that the ban is against European Human Rights – but what about the rights of the rest of us who do not wish to passive smoke? Do we get a choice?
In New York, the law is even more stringent, smoking is also banned in most public places – that means anywhere other than home basically. Is this the way which the UK is heading and would this be a good thing? I, for one, would be totally for this idea. Smoking is a filthy habit and one which I do not wish my son to pick up in later life – if the ban means that he is protected from the idea ever reaching his brain, then great. Also, if smoking becomes such an inconvenience that people stop bothering at all, this will surely save the NHS millions and then maybe that money could be used for helping the people who deserve it and not the ones who have dug their own graves despite countless warnings to their health?