A guest post by:
ASH Australia wants to ban smoking outdoors.
However, there’s something much more worrying than smoking cigarettes.
First, you need to understand what causes the damage in smoking.
When you burn something, you create smoke. As the smoke cools down, it creates tar and carcinogens. And it’s that, not nicotine, which causes most of the harm of smoking.
Crucially, it doesn’t matter what you inhale, whether it’s tobacco smoke or a different kind of smoke. (On balance, according to Paul Bergen from tobaccoharmreduction.org, non-plant smoke is probably worse.)
So what’s worse than cigarettes? Something that produces more smoke for a longer period of time.
- I don’t know whether barbecues produce 100 or 1000 more times smoke than cigarettes, but I do know it’s a lot. (You don’t need to weigh someone to know if they are thin!)
- Unlike cigarettes, barbecues produce smoke continuously – in contrast, the average puff on a cigarette lasts two seconds.
- The WHO estimates that around 2 million people a year die because of smoke from solid fuel, while outdoor air pollution causes 1.3 millions deaths a year.
I think it is fair to assume that second hand barbecuing is at least one hundred times worse than second hand smoking, and as for third hand barbecuing – the mind boggles!
Even one of the most liberal and least nanny states in the world, California, is moving to ban barbecues, with one poor victim of barbecuers’ second hand charcoal complaining:
I know personally when I’m at the basketball court down at the park and I get a whiff of that [barbecue smoke), I start choking to death.
And if you think California is wrong to do this, well, think of the children! As one person said:
[There are] things [barbecues] everywhere, and it’s where kids are running around. That scares me.
Source: Ban Barbecues on Manhattan Beach
So let’s get our priorities right, ASH! Forget the fags for now – let’s work on banning barbecues first!
Footnote: ASH Australia told us that cigarettes were their prerogative (comments now sadly deleted on their facebook page) – but as barbecues produce a lot more ASH than cigarettes, we think it is. So it’s time to think of Australian’s non-barbecuers, for a change. (Yes, all 5 of them!)
p.s. This post is not intended to be taken seriously!