While there are many things I love about Jordan, the proportion of the population that smokes inconsiderately isn’t one of them. It is hard to go to a restaurant, office, or anywhere really and not be “treated” to the horrible smell of cigarette smoke. And, at restaurants, people are even more likely than American smokers to hold their cigarette above their heads outside of their booth, presumably “sharing” them with their neighbors. What a time to be sharing! And, while all of that bothers me, here’s what actually bothers me much, much more…
- Packs of young children, no older than 7 or 8 roaming the streets after school smoking
- Pregnant mothers smoking and damaging the fragile lungs of their unborn children
- Parents puffing away while their children suffer from the traumatic effects of second hand smoke
The American Cancer Society shares these effects of second hand smoke:
“Secondhand smoke can be harmful in many ways. In the United States alone, each year it is responsible for:
- an estimated 35,000 deaths from heart disease in people who live with smokers but are not current smokers
- about 3,400 lung cancer deaths in nonsmoking adults
- other respiratory problems in nonsmokers, including coughing, phlegm, chest discomfort, and reduced lung function
- 150,000 to 300,000 lower respiratory tract infections (such as pneumonia and bronchitis) in children younger than 18 months of age, which result in 7,500 to 15,000 hospitalizations
- increases in the number and severity of asthma attacks in about 200,000 to 1 million asthmatic children
- increased incidence of middle ear infections in young children
Pregnant women exposed to ETS are also at increased risk of having low birth weight babies. “
I aks you, is this what we want for the future of Jordan? Asthma, respiratory infections, low birth weight, isn’t it time to protect this most precious of all assets? Can’t we speak out for those who have no voice? It’s time for us to make a stand. I urge all bloggers to unite. Blog about this, talk about this, e-mail your friends. Please get involved. And, as a first (and easiest) step, sign the petition that El 3atal has created. You can find it at http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/JordanSmokingBan.
It’s time for us to decide what we want for our children, for Jordan’s future, for OUR future. Join us and make your voice heard. In fact, make their voice heard, those children who can’t speak for themselves and whose environment is causing them to make choices that they can’t take back. One of the lovely Konouz heard us talking about this over the weekend and said he’d heard that each cigarette takes a minute off your life. Our hearts should cry out for those 7 and 8 year olds who are already killing themsleves. Please join with us and give them a choice.