I have a huge problem, I wish I could start a campaign or do something that would have a positive outcome.
I am a smoker and get treated and made to feel like a criminal. We are banned from smoking in public areas. I recently saw a program on Sky News where they are changing the packaging of cigarette boxes, using pictures on the boxes of how smoking damages your health.
Why don’t the makers of alcohol put pictures of mutilated bodies, car crashes, people’s lives hanging in the balance in hospital, and abused and neglected children from parents who are alcoholics.
A smoker can drive home without wiping out innocent people in a car crash. Smokers do not cause scenes in public places, stumble all over the place, get loud, cause fights, vomit all over the place, make total fools of themselves or reek of alcohol. Young people in clubs, girls dancing with and drinking alcohol thinking that makes them look so trendy. They then start making even bigger idiots of themselves, falling all over the place, guys than taking full advantage of them in their drunken state. I could carry on with this. The worst is they took adverts of cigarettes off TV – yet they advertise alcohol to the max.
Showing how great it is and associate it with party time. Does one need to get a personality out of the bottle? My list could go on and on. How many lives have been lost through this so-called social beverage. It is so scary. I really feel that this should not be taken lightly and something needs to be done about it.
How long have you smoked for? Do you plan on quitting?
I started smoking in my early twenties. Something I really regret doing. I was more of a social smoker. I gave up for a while. However, with life’s stresses, I started again.
If your grandchild starts smoking one day what will you tell him/her?
I would try in every which way to prevent my granddaughter from smoking.
Drinking is a social behaviour and is seen as acceptable, what do you suggest we as a society we do to discourage excessive drinking?
Alcohol is the one thing I never took to. We never kept alcohol at home and although I tried, it took one glass of wine for me to never drink. I may as well eat a box of rotten grapes.
Do you have first-hand experience of alcohol abuse (friends or family) and how did you deal with it?
My father-in-law was an alcoholic. This scared my husband for life as he used to come home and hit my mother-in-law or they would get calls to fetch him from the police station as he was found lying in the gutters. My husband who does drink on occasion vowed he would never go that route. My father-in-law was also an embarrassment when we went out. My husband’s siblings followed the same route which has been embarrassing and humiliating to watch. Fights would break out or his brother would beat his wife in public for example. Both my daughters have lost friends through alcohol-related accidents.
Would you ban alcohol advertising?
Just reading the news or hearing on the news or driving past a fatal accident is enough to say enough is enough with alcohol. Most accidents and deaths are alcohol-related.
I work at a high school and see and hear enough stories that would make your hair stand up. Recently Carte Blanche interviewed parents who had lost their children through alcohol-related incidents. During the break, an ad for alcohol comes on. I ask you with tears in my eyes?
Children today are very easily influenced. We have had pupils bring alcohol to school getting totally drunk. Some parents find it amusing. I’m talking about pupils that are eighth graders as well. Surely you yourself have seen a lot. I apologize if I have deviated in any way but something must be done.
This must stop. BUT HOW?