1.22.2009

Smoker's Rights?

I don't smoke. And I don't give a shit who does. What you do to your body on your own time is up to you - I lump smoking in the same category as drinking coffee, drinking alcohol, shooting heroin or freebasing crushed-up Pez. Whatever gets you off and doesn't hurt anyone else is just fine by me.

That said, the second your little extracurricular activities start to get in my way or put me at risk, they need to get the fuck out... Preferably by realizing yourself that you're being a dick or a hazard and moving on. But if you're too big of a dick to stop being one voluntarily, I should have every right to demand that your jittery, smoky, caffeine-addled, crack-addict ass move on.

It's for this reason that I find the entire concept of smoker's rights to be laughable. Take for instance the furor building around this job posting for a webmaster for a non-smoking advocacy group. This is lunacy. First off, it's a non-smoking advocacy group, who themselves are special kinds of dicks - those who want to tell you what you can and cannot do with your own body. What smoker in their right mind wants to work for this zealot-laden group of busybodies anyway? Second, shouldn't the advocacy group have the right to request that people supporting the group with their time and effort be at the very least in-line with the group's behavior standard, so as to keep from being hypocritical?

Third, I get where "smoker's rights" groups are coming from... It shouldn't be an employer's business what I do with my free time. But when they make it their business, it's really my decision whether or not to work for them, not the government or society's business to regulate them. I feel the exact same way about the bans on smoking in bars and restaurants across Georgia (especially in Decatur). This shouldn't be a law, or even civic business. It's the restaurant's decision what clientel they want to attract, and if non-smokers want to frequent an establishment where smoking is allowed, fuck them. They can cough and hack, or move on someplace else. It's not THEIR right to insist that a business cease an entirely legal form of narcotic use in their building (especially when they're also serving alcohol).

The same goes for this job posting. Smokers who want employers to accept their personally chosen form of vice are really just big cocks. I don't bring up legal threats against my employer due to my addiction to video games. I don't get "game breaks" from work so that I can go sneak a hit of my chosen drug. I don't get the privledge of inconveinencing everyone around me with the sounds of gunshots and screaming and digital death, just because MY personal vice has a hold on me. So why should smokers?

You picked up the stupid cigarette, you were dumb enough to get addicted... Deal with it. It's a vice - a personal choice. No one HAS to accept it. You can choose to be around folks who do accept it, or you can live the rough annoying life of constantly being harangued for choosing smoking.

Or coffee, or alcohol, or heroin, or video games, or food... It's all the same damn thing.

And before someone gets it in their head to start equating smoking with race, gender or other traits, know that there's a HUGE difference between God-given rights for humankind to have acceptence and equality based on biological features, and your workplace dealing with the fact that you couldn't tell your pals 'No' when you were 16 and started lighting up. Or drinking coffee, or shooting heroin...

Etcetera.