You’ve trapped me for the last time!
By Janis McMath, Contributor
This spring, Councilman Peter Koo proposed a bill that would ban walking and smoking simultaneously in New York City—and let me be the first to build a shrine to this beautiful and considerate politician. I passionately believe that his idea needs to make its way to Greater Vancouver because this city is full of self-centred smokers.
My beef with people who smoke on the go is the fact that they’re purposely trapping everyone behind them in a cloud of smog. I constantly see people strolling and blowing smoke in the faces of mothers and their babies. HealthLink BC states that babies “inhale more smoke because they breathe faster than adults.” With that in mind, consider exactly how awful it is for a newborn to be caught in a stream of smoke.
Knowingly forcing people to inhale your cigarettes is shamelessly inconsiderate of those with breathing problems like asthma. An asthma attack can be a serious threat to those with the condition, and The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lists tobacco smoke, including the second-hand smoke of passers-by, as “one of the most common asthma triggers.” That fact alone should prevent anyone from walking on a sidewalk while smoking if they have any decency.
To clarify, I have no problem with people smoking outside. People deserve to enjoy their vices in public as long as they do it in a manner that is mindful of the fact that they are in a shared space. There is no issue with someone smoking off to the side where it is less crowded, for example, because they are not subjecting anyone to their smoke and because everyone can easily pass them.
So, in conclusion, there’s no reason to smoke and walk—unless you’re a jerk who doesn’t care about babies and sick people.