President Obama Still Smokes
According to a new USA Today report, President Obama still smokes. Having just had his first physical exam since taking office, the media and internet are buzzing with the news that the president’s physician has advised him to “continue smoking cessation efforts.” That he’s still smoking despite his efforts to quit is to be expected. Quitting smoking isn’t easy, and it can be expensive. Plenty of people borrow money or use credit cards to do it. Few are able to quit cold turkey.
Smoking is ugly
I’m not just a non-smoker, I am the most intolerant kind of anti-smoker. The photos of the president smoking are indeed ugly. I’d like never to see another one; but on the other hand, I say, “So what?” The president’s physician has advised him to quit smoking. Who cares? For myself, I’d be happy enough to have him smoke so long as I never had to see another photograph of him caught in the act.
Smoking is suicidal
An article posted today on NewYorkDailyNews.com rehashes all the same old facts about smoking. Twenty-one percent of the American population smokes. This year, 450,000 Americans will die from cigarette smoking. More people die every year from cigarette smoking than from all other kinds of drug use combined. Smoking increases the risk of nearly every kind of cancer. Nicotine is more addictive than street drugs. Only 20% of smokers try to quit. Of those who try, only 2% to 3% are successful. Most smokers quit briefly and then go back to smoking. Yada, yada, yada.
For someone campaigning about health care, smoking is hypocritical
Sure, on every level, smoking is a disgusting and expensive habit. That our president smokes cigarettes is of course, hypocritical as well as embarrassing. What needles me, however, is that in the USA Today article, President Obama is reported to have said that he doesn’t smoke in front of his kids and family. What? Should I be thanking him for that? I have no idea about whether it would be possible for the president to smoke in private, away from all possibility of intrusion by the media. I don’t know enough about the office of the president to know why we need to know the details about President Obama’s routine medical examinations. But if he manages not to smoke in front of his family, isn’t there some way that he could keep it out of my face, too?