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I’ve been flat out busy this past week, so forgive me for this rushed (and late) post. I have a broader post that will go into the data in the post in more detail, but it’ll have to wait another week.

I just want to say something, because The American Cancer Society designated November 15th, 2012 as The Great American Smokeout – a day to encourage an assist smokers to give up smoking. I’m no smoker, so I can’t imagine the difficult giving up somethings as addicting as nicotine, but I wish everyone who tries the very best.

I don’t hate people who smoke, but I hate smoking. Smoking became popular before the consequences were known. Those consequences have been known for decades now, and still cigarettes are for sale. It’s hard to imagine any government allowing the sale of a product that kills so many people.

How many people?

Let’s have a look at some of the statistics. Statistics are what we humans use when we want to avoid the awful facts, they blunt the tragedy behind each terrible loss, each family left behind.

These numbers are for the USA alone, taken from the American Cancer Society’s 2012 report, and rounded to the nearest ten thousand.

  • Every year 450,000 people die of smoking related diseases.
  • An additional 50,000 people die of disease related to second hand smoke.
  • That’s 1 out of every five deaths.
  • If you smoke, you have a 50/50 chance of dying of cancer.
  • If you switch to a smokeless tobacco product your chances of cancer go up.
  • 8,600,000 people suffer from chronic conditions related to smoking, such as bronchitis, emphysema, and cardiovascular diseases. Yes, that’s the right number of zeros – over eight million people.

Some people want to smoke. Fair enough. But some people want to drink a bottle of whiskey and drive, and society doesn’t allow that. Some people want to load up on cocaine to get them through the day, and society doesn’t allow that. So why do we allow the sale of a highly addictive product that results in HALF A MILLION PREMATURE DEATHS EVERY YEAR?

The American Cancer Society has a whole host of resources to help people quit, and you don’t even have to be an American.

I wish everyone attempting to kick the habit the very best of luck, and if you know someone trying to quit, please give them your support.



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