Don’t Smoke Em, If You Got Em
Written by: Kuki
Last week, within days of each other, all the cruise lines under the Carnival Corporation umbrella announced new policies dramatically restricting where smoking will be allowed on their ships. These new policies are fairly similar to those in place already on Royal Caribbean International ships (Royal Caribbean and Celebrity). The Carnival Corporation ships have banned smoking in passenger cabins, with Princess Cruise Line extending the ban further to include private balconies.
From the details released it seems each ship will have a minimum of one indoor lounge onboard where smoking is allowed, as well as an area outside on deck where smoking will be allowed. To date Carnival Corporation ships have not announced a ban on smoking in their casinos, as already exists on Celebrity Cruise and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines.
In these generally tumultuous times, where few people can rarely agree on anything when it comes to rules and regulations or social behavior policies (whether government or private companies), it’s more acceptable to propose bans on smoking than it is to suggest plans for world peace. Even the world’s most zealous libertarians, who want to see no rules for anyone’s behavior, are in favor of banning smoking. These days being anti-smoking is probably the most acceptable cause on can take up.
Depending on what studies you refer to, only 18-20% of the North American population smokes. Outside of a rather wealthy tobacco industry, that’s not much of a group to put up much of a fuss. And those that do still smoke do so almost ashamedly; accepting their ostracizing, because they’ve been convinced it’s an “ugly” and unattractive activity. Oh… and there’s the health issue too.
This is where I have to admit I’m one of them; a part of the leper colony. I’ve smoked for 45 years. During that time, because of the prospective negative health issues I’ve attempted to quit a number of times. I’ve tried many of the means of assistance touted as stop smoking aids. I’d manage alright for a bit, but I was in the bar business, and I’d go to work, and then bars were havens for leper smokers. At least that was/is my excuse.
I get it that to non-smokers it stinks. I get it that my clothes smell of tobacco. My problem is I like to smoke cigarettes. I enjoy smoking cigarettes.
The more of a “cause” it has become, the more militant I’ve become about my right to smoke. Aside from what you may say, I do have a right to smoke. Why? Because it remains a legal activity.
I find the banning of it in all kinds of places that have now become socially acceptable; like city streets, parks, beaches, etc. to be hypocritical. If it is such a serious problem to society that it needs to be banned, why is it not simply made illegal?
Remember when marijuana was illegal? You might say it still is, but the reality is medical marijuana is being more universally accepted, and possession of marijuana is now nothing more than a misdemeanor – like jaywalking–if that. That despite the fact that today’s marijuana is 20 times the strength of the marijuana available “in my day”– when simple possession meant jail time, and it was considered “Satan’s weed”.
Every day there’s new hazards to our health being discovered, and regulatory bodies moving to control them or ban them. Over the last several weeks I’ve been reading about studies done, stating that using cellular telephones could be carcenogenic. Because of these warnings is everyone going to quit using their cell phones? HA.
It’s a similar situation to cigarettes really. There were warnings for many, many years about the harmful affects of cigarettes. Yet, for many, many years it was socially acceptable to smoke. I would be visiting at friend’s homes, and start to step outside to have a cigarette, and they would insist it was fine to smoke in their home (I didn’t, and insisted on going outside). But today, because it’s a socially acceptable “cause” they would never make that offer. What changed? Perspective . So, don’t be taking out your land line telephones yet. That, or some other odd obscurity may be the next universal “cause”.
I really do get it though! And I understand the cruise lines are reacting to the demands from their clientele (though the clientele can go chase their nose, if they demand they be allowed to bring their own alcohol onboard). The movement for the cruise lines to “support the cause” has grown, and not unexpectedly.
It’s now time for me, and other members of the leper colony, to decide if we want to accept the restrictions, and give our financial approval to the decisions that have been made by those sectors of the industry.
Smoker’s of the world would unite, but we can’t see each other through the haze.
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Posted: June 28th, 2011 under Kuki.