A fellow called this newspaper office not too long ago and asked rather rudely that he be shown just one person who had died from smoking. The fellow was advised that it is against the law to dig up dead folks — one or several.

Of course this fellow was swathed in ignorance. Had anyone approached him with a basket of truth he likely would have run from it as if it contained a cobra.

Many of us grew up in the hypocrisy of tobacco production. We grew it and prided ourselves in the bright golden leaves that were taken from the curing barns. Yet, for many of us, our dads would have taken us behind the wood shed had we been caught dragging on a Lucky Strike or a Philip Morris. We knew it was bad for us even with the little research of that time.

There is incredible evidence that most anything foreign introduced to our lungs is not a good thing. And there is indisputable evidence that those things determined to be carciogens introduced into our lungs can be deadly.

Many people who have smoked most of their lives and then became terminal with emphysema, lung cancer, heart disease, etc., have said they wished they could address this matter to young people and advise them not to go there. Don’t travel that road.

Tobacco is neither food nor fiber. It has no socially redeeming value. That’s hard for many of us who grew up on tobacco farms to admit. It’s a deadly vice. Not one good thing can be said about cigarettes. The truth is overwhelming, and today we see more and more people embracing that truth. But naysayers will always be among us.

Tobacco is no longer the king crop it used to because of a more health conscious society. We no longer have tobacco festivals — how morbid that would be these days with all the medical research that has been presented. We don’t have “tobacco queens.” What a negative connotation that would be for a young lady.

Yes, it was once a key commodity in our diversified farming scheme. But we cannot get past the fact that it is neither food nor fiber and that its tar and nicotine can manifest itself in our bodies to the point of malignancy.

Will cigarettes ever go away? Not likely. But we can hope that man will grow wiser and subsequently healthier. That’s a concept of health care reform we can hope and pray for.

React to this story:

0
0
0
0
0

Recommended for you