Debunking Smoking Myths


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Campus Smoking Policies


Alexis Wenzowski

the past century, myths about tobacco seemed to multiply at a
phenomenal rate. It wasn’t until the 1980s that individuals
began to deconstruct those myths. However, the truths contradicting
those stories haven’t been realized by everyone. Indeed, not
everyone even knows what these smoking myths are. Leave the Pack
Behind is here to debunk some of the smoking myths for you, the
students, this week.

Its about the smoker not the smoke.

It’s hardly about the smoker. Well, the smoker has the choice
to pick up a cigarette and smoke it. However, it’s the smoke that
really irks people because others have no choice but to inhale
when they’re around smokers. They could possibly leave the vicinity
but who wants to put their life on hold for a smoker? Therefore,
when people tell the smoker to stop, it could possibly be about
the health of the smoker, but it’s more likely about smoke bothering
other people. The world does not have a vendetta against smokers,
but rather people in this world dislike having smoke blown involuntarily
in their faces.

It’ s only the tar in tobacco that can harm your health.

ha. There are numerous chemicals in cigarettes. In fact, there
are a plethora. To be specific, there are more than 4000 chemicals
in one little cigarette. Out of those 4000 plus chemicals, there
are over 40 that cause cancer. These deadly forty include Arsenic
(ie. ant poison), Acetone (ie. Paint stripper), Cadium (ie. used
in car batteries), amongst those other treats. Yum! Even nicotine,
that addictive little substance, can be lethal!

The Marlborough man is sexy.

concept of sexy equalling the charming Marlborough man is a bit
dated. Actually, it should be described as a dead concept considering
that the original Marlborough man is dead (and died of lung cancer
at that). If the thought of a dead skeletal Marlborough man isn’t
unappealing enough, then consider his most probably yellowed fingers
and teeth, fetid breath, and impotency. Oh! Did I mention
impotency? Well, according to Health Canada male smokers are
twice as likely to experience impotency as opposed to a nonsmoker.
Indeed, it can be said that considering all the aforementioned
things, the Marlborough man is NOT and was not sexy.

Smoking doesn’t actually cost that much.

I suppose that if you were pulling in a nice fat sum of money
then perhaps smoking wouldn’t cost you that much financially.
However, if you’re reading the illustrious Silhouette, then
you’re most probably a student. And if you’re a student, then
you most probably know the value of budgeting your dollars. Well,
consider this: If you smoke one pack a week, then over the four
years of university, your habit is going to cost you a whopping
sum of almost $1000! If you happen to be really hooked and smoke
a pack a day, then those little packs amount to almost $7000
over four years. So, when buying those cigarettes, consider those
thousands that could be going to better places (like tuition,
books, cds, etc.). Smoking is a financial drain.

If you can’t quit for good, then there’s no point in quitting
at all.

enough, many people do comply with this sort of mentality. Their
reasoning is, “Well, I tried to quit before, and I just couldn’t
do it. I sort of just took a break; then I got stressed out/exposed
to a social situation where I wanted one/craved one, and so I
had one. There’s really no point. I’m a smoker for life.” BUT
this is hardly the truth. In fact, all smokers who quit are at
high-risk for a relapse within their first six months of smoking
cessation. And to make things even more interesting, it takes
a smoker an average of 4 (plus) attempts to actually quit. So,
there’s no need to comply with that sort of mentality. Every
little effort counts.

McMaster students, If you want more information about smoking
myths or are interested in information about tobacco, then Leave
the Pack Behind can be reached through Student Health Services
(in the basement of the Student Centre) or through the e-mail
address of [email protected]

Wenzowski is currently a 3rd year Political Science and Peace
Studies student and hosts a weekly radio program. Her personal
mission is to help and support Richard
, should he ever decide to quit smoking (or at least
cut down).
Questions and comments can be emailed to her at [email protected].
Sass is encouraged

Debunking Smoking Myths
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