Welcome to a Retreat from a Hostile World
Topics covered in these social smoking pages :
Welcome to Social Smoking
Here you can find comfort and solace, and, in your hour of need, links to other sites of support and interest.
These pages are for those who are tired of being persecuted, tired of the often aggressive aversion to smoking that has become the norm. They will concentrate on choosing to smoke for pleasure, enjoying the flavour and experience, in the company of like-minded friends or in peaceful reflective solitude.
And how vindictive the persecution has quickly become! Vast swathes of the world, including Ireland, Scotland and England, have gone completely non-smoking in public buildings and work places - Some of the European countries, e.g.Germany and Austria, seem to have reversed some of their early draconian legislation and adopted a more mature and sensible approach, allowing smoking in specific types of entertainment premises.
The important scientific issues around passive smoking have been seriously distorted and cynically blown up out of all proportion in relation to other risks we all have to face, day to day, in today's crowded society ......
The end result has been the enactment of a draconian and intensely spiteful piece of legislation which has unnecessarily destroyed a way of life for millions.
Smokers must actively campaign to ensure that their freedom to smoke in public places is re-instated where it can be enjoyed in isolation from people who do not want to smoke and those who dislike the smell, with residual levels of smoke kept below those levels considered harmful to workers employed there.
England bottled-out under pressure from anti-smokers, the Labour Government broke its election pledge and took the decision to ban smoking in all public enclosed spaces. Where were the liberal minded politicians and those with sufficient intelligence and strength of character not to be pressured by specious arguments?? Where did they run to? Smokers on the whole appear to have quietly succumbed to the legislation, but what the anti-smoking lobby doesn't know is the intense anger and frustration that lies just below the surface.
NO SMOKE - NO VOTE
When the time comes to vote, then those politicians who voted against smokers' civil liberties (and continue to do so) can expect to incur the wrath of a good proportion of the 10+ million smokers and their supporters.
In addition, there are many who deplore the degeneration of our once open and civilised society into an excessively constrained, over-regulated and suffocatingly politically-correct authoritarian state. All the while, new regulation after new regulation is heaped on the long-suffering public, effectively being treated by the government as wayward children. The time has come to say "Enough" and join those fighting for the freedom of the individual.
It is unfortunate that, in general, most non-smokers cannot understand, and don't seem prepared to try to understand, the way many smokers regard smoking as a personal and social pleasure, smoke with different levels of intensity for different reasons, and use it in a variety of ways to help them enjoy (or perhaps get through) their daily lives.
Benefits of Responsible Smoking
Looking across the many smokers sites and debates and scientific discussions, for many, smoking brings real benefits including relaxation, social bonding, coping with stress, improved concentration, support during depression and anxiety, and social interaction support to name but a few. To them, these benefits far outweigh any health risks. This unfair legislation has seriously affected their ability to manage their own lives and needs the way they want to. It is particularly authoritarian given that properly ventilated separate smoking rooms/venues for smokers are legally viable and could be achieved without inflicting even the smell of smoke on non-smokers who choose to avoid such sites.
Smokers are depicted by the self-righteous anti-smoking lobby as 20-40 a day addicts, most of whom (they say ~70%) are desperate to give up. In this way the anti-smoking lobby enrols the public sympathy vote. While many are keen to give up, this does not represent the whole story. Only around 30% of smokers actually try to give up.
If you believe in maintaining your own freedom of choice (regardless of the smoking debate) then, while browsing through the rest of these "Smokers' Retreat" pages, make sure you visit the "Campaign to Amend the Smoking Ban"
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The health risks of smoking are clear to any thinking person - and this page is not here to encourage people to smoke. On the contrary, it is here to put forward the viewpoint that intermittent and casual smoking of high quality cigarettes for pleasure will reduce the health risks of those currently smoking large numbers of ordinary cigarettes everyday. We must also do all we can to avoid affecting, or injuring the sensitivities of, non-smokers.