ethel’s words

Click your browser’s “Back” button to return to SmashingIkons


Congress is still struggling with tobacco. Not with trans fat; not with inadequate food labeling; not with lack of condemnation of diseased foods, particularly beef. No! So far as I can tell, depending on mass media, only evil, seductive, reviled tobacco.

Nobody needs tobacco until they have established a friendship with it. Smoking tobacco is pleasurable, but more importantly, it becomes a trigger for relaxation. The tension of needing nicotine is joined to all the others. Choice? Freedom? Civil Liberties? Not when the subject is legislation related to tobacco. Truth? No matter. Congress is no place for truth and accuracy balanced against Power.

It may be that hundreds of thousands of deaths are “attributed” to tobacco use. But has there been a study of smokers? Not to my attention. There have been only studies of deaths.

Exactly how did these “channels of discontent” get dug? Why are the lawmakers picking on the problems that have religious underpinnings? Is it health they care about? Let’s be forthright. There didn’t seem to be government interest in “coffin-nails” until the frenzied Christians became a threat at the voting booth. Religion, despite prohibitions--has been sliming its way into government processes since before the nation was born. The wisdom of The Founders has never been equalled, though we have had some intellectual giants in the governance of this country. Why can’t we free ourselves from the superstitions that are built into our languages and our customs? And worse, that get special protection under Law.

Ethel C. Hale