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Bernhard Schlink

Science is best when discussed: leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments!!

Tuesday, April 06, 2004

(Non)Smoking Section 

Lesbian and bisexual teenage girls seem to have the worst rates of smoking. While I have no trouble believing that, I have a bit of an anecdotal doubt regarding gay male teens smoking so little, according to the study. I'm hard pressed to think of five of my gay friends who don't smoke, fewer if I count those who've recently quit. My sample may be skewed, but I'd like to know more about this survey.

Meanwhile, getting people to quit smoking is generally agreed upon (except by those in/supported by the tobacco industry) as a Good Thing. So, the question is, why is the US government trying to quash a proven step in that direction? HHS denies that smokeless tobacco is less harmful than smoked. Even without seeing a published paper, this is clearly false: smoke, of any kind, is bad for you, and even if the tobacco itself is causing most of the problems related to smoking, eliminating the smoke itself removes a big factor. Plus it eliminates the second-hand effects that everyone keeps whining about.

Clearly, the author of this article has an agenda, but to be honest, even if her agenda is marketing, it's better than the most obvious motivation for blocking these products (support the tobacco industry, a big Republican booster). If even half of what's presented here is true, we have Yet Another Thing about which to be Very Angry with this administration. As if we needed more!

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