RE: Non-smokers don’t rule the city By Cindy Fleming, Windsor Star December 9, 2010: Re: Re: Lighting up children’s rights, by Jonathon Liedtke, Dec. 4.
Non-smokers don’t rule the city
By Cindy Fleming, Windsor Star December 9, 2010: Re: Re: Lighting up children’s rights, by Jonathon Liedtke, Dec. 4.
Well put Cindy, I truly enjoy playing games when it comes to children’s health (please note my sarcasm). Cindy says smoking is ok, so it should be allowed. Cindy is upset that cars are allowed to drive fast, and she has to strap her children in, but that the country is allowed to sell them. Cindy is upset with drinking and driving, and that society would never allow it to be taken away…
Indeed Cindy, you are right “Society says we should all live certain ways. We aren’t allowed to choose our ways unless they follow the ‘rules of society’”; such are the costs of living in a society. Smokers and non-smokers did once spend time together, in harmony, in the same establishments, but things have changed. We have learned that smoking negatively affects the other patrons as well, not just smokers; who knew? [Please note Cindy, I am terribly upset that you no longer enjoy the Casino anymore: Hopefully you will find a new vice!]
Non-smokers do not rule the city: a truer statement never written. However, in the current situation smokers indeed do rule the city. You have the rights, whereas non-smokers do not. A non-smoker is unable in their fullest capacity to impart good health upon a smoker. No matter how much non-smoking a non-smoker does, the smoker’s lung quality will not improve, nor cardiovascular system strengthen, risk of stroke still runs high, cancer even higher, but yet, none of these benefits stemming from the non-smoker.
So Cindy, we are at an injunction, or rather an impasse: What are we to do? I enjoy your suggestion; let us bring freedom back to our city so smokers are able to exercise their necessary freedoms and rights. Maybe there is enough room for everyone. I recommend going back to the way it used to be, a smoking-room and standard-room. Properly vent the smoking room, put in a double-tiered door so as not to allow smoke to permeate out, thick glass, etc.
However, my question is this: Cindy, why do you feel it your right to go out of your way to deliberately bring illness to children? Why not expose them to asbestos, mercury, toxic chemicals, or other harmful materials: Why stop with smoking? Clearly you care not for children, but of your own vices solely. I realize I come off strong in these articles, but I would love a response. You speak of freedom and ideologies, however the only point I can strip from your comments, and others opposing this ban, is that you truly need to smoke in direct proximity to children, wilfully ignoring you are actively contributing to the death of that child. This is not a potential matter, as in drinking and driving, whereas if an accident does not occur, the child is okay; every particle of smoke is a guaranteed step towards lower health, serious illness, and death. There is nothing more to this matter? Speak not of freedoms but of the issue: smoking and children.
The room Arnold sat in was not any bigger than a standard prison cell, consisting of 8x8. The only notable objects in the room were the large metallic door which took up an entire wall, a lone swinging light bulb, held only by a single cord, and a bookcase. The light bulb was one of those old relics from another time, bulbous and dangerous. One could hardly believe that at any point in our collected history these things actually existed, let alone for one to still exist!
Arnold studied the room, and pondered what it was that brought him here. Certainly it was not fate, or luck for that matter, this was a grave place. No, indeed it was something else, something much more sinister.
As he rose from the floor which he was perched on, he noticed just how painful his left leg was. It was always painful, not a sharp constant pain, more like a spontaneous crack of lightening, which sent spasms from the tip of his spinal cord, straight to his toes. How it was that a childhood injury of falling off of a playground, could still, to this day, pain him in such an obscure manner, eluded him. He paced, ever so slowly, over to the bookcase, to inspect its contents. With each step, his foot struck the floor with a loud, cold echo, which seemed to resonate throughout his bones. The floor was made of cement, and had clearly been decaying ever since the End.
Time was different then, he knew this much for sure. Children used to be seen playing in the streets, whereas today, very few of either remained; children and streets. Yes, something terrible did indeed happen. But Arnold knew not of the specifics, very few did. Some had grandparents, or teachers who had passed on vital fables of forgotten lore, but for the most part, this was a society which was concerned with the present. The past was history, and the future, more than uncertain, was decaying before it began.
Without a functioning society, the majority of social institution began to collapse, then the public institutions, finally essential services, and last but not least, the schools. Surprisingly, or not, depending on your upbringing, the police, army, military, navy, basically any authoritarian body survived the End. Not because they were left to uphold the law, or ensure that society continued to function, but for the simple reason that they had weapons, and thus, were prepared.
The echoing grew louder with each step, resonating deeper into his soul, causing a flash of memory to flush over him, much like the way one feels during a particularly embarrassing conversation with somebody. This was the constant emotion Arnold was left with, an uneasy mixture of embarrassment, and the feeling as if his stomach were constantly on an elevator, plummeting fast downwards, to its utter demise. Arnold was reminded of a face, but he could not place whose it was, or what it looked like. It was an idea, a memory, and it seemed to fade in and out of his vision. Who was this person, was it a man, woman, child? He quickly grew tiresome of the familiar feeling, and continued onward.
When he reached the bookcase, he realized that it was entirely empty. ‘Funny’, he thought, as he was sure that it was stacked to the brim with objects, not necessarily all books. He continued to survey the shelves, all four of them. First the bottom, as it caused him the most pain to bend down, he figured it best to put this out of the way. It was empty. The following two were equally uninteresting, however, the final, top shelf, proved enough to tickle his curiosity.
A thin layer of dust covered the shelf, with the exception of a small area toward the back. What used to sit there couldn’t have been any bigger than a matchbook, but it still struck Arnold odd as to why it was different. What was there, why wasn’t it there now, why was he in the room? All of these questions continued to flow seamlessly throughout his head, and no matter what he did, he knew they would not escape.
It was not that he was naturally a curious person. In fact, he was quite the opposite. He had always kept to himself, and very rarely did he enjoy the company of other creatures. He was a lone wolf, as he likened it. No, the reason why these thoughts filled his head was because at this time, in this place where he was, one could not. When the majority of your days are occupied simply by waiting for them to end, it is difficult to push thoughts out of your head once they enter.
So Arnold turned round, and began the slow echoed walk, back to where he had been seated. Clap, Clap, Clap went his feet as they stepped on the cold surface. Even without shoes on his feet, the echo was harsh and loud. Why was he not wearing shoes?
Again, he surveyed the room, attempting for dear life, to let his thoughts be occupied by something else. But nothing came. Finally, he rested his eyes on the north-most corner of the room, or what he thought was north. The two cold walls joined together at a strong 90 degree angle, leaving Arnold feeling complacent with his knowledge of Pythagarus.
Yes, Arnold was here for a reason, this much was certain. The large metallic door, which acted as a secondary light source, reflecting and refracting the single bulb, began to emit a clicking noise. Very slow at first, and faint, but indeed, it was clicking.
Then the light went out, and the room went dark. Arnold was left with a terrible feeling of horror, which swept over him like a cold night time wave, over the still warm, golden sand. He felt the hair on the back of his neck begin to stand on end, and he pushed himself backward into the opposite wall. He closed his eyes, and waited, knowing full well that the door would open.
As he waited, he was reminded of the last time the door made this sound, and the light went out. Terrible feelings then too. But what had happened then? What was happening now? Arnold wasn’t sure of anything.
Then, the light came back on, and the noise stopped. Arnold let out a sigh of relief, and tried to let his wits come back about him.
Once he had maintained his composure, he stood up, and surveyed the room. It was not very big, couldn’t have been more than 8x8. He quickly noticed a large bookcase on the wall adjacent to him, and decided to inspect its contents. As he took a step forward, the echo seemed to resonate throughout the entire room, and his body itself. But before he could asses just what was housed on the shelves, the light went out.