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Smoke haters go after smokers with a vengeance

153 Comments

People who resent being exposed to cigarette smoke at the workplace, in restaurants and in other public places have been becoming increasingly militant in demonstrating their dislike.

Spa! (Dec 23) presents four somewhat extreme case studies of these "psychotic" smoke-haters.

In Case 1, volunteer groups patrol an apartment building to hound residents who smoke.

"A couple of years ago, I was in the habit of going out on my apartment's balcony for a smoke," a man named Hojo recalls. "Then I received a complaint from the neighbor upstairs, who insisted that my smoke was causing his drying laundry balcony to smell of tobacco."

As 80% of the members of the cooperative where Hojo lives are nonsmokers, their votes on the matter invariably carry the day. Like the decision to adopt the slogan, "Let's create a smoke-free living environment that keeps smoke out of children's eyes." The building's balconies and other common-use areas were, henceforth, put off-limits to smokers.

"More than once, smoke haters began pounding on my door, shouting in a loud voice, 'Mr Hojo, the exhaust fan is spreading the smoke from your apartment into the corridors!'"

Then six months ago came the straw that broke the camel's back, when the leader of the patrol rang Hojo's doorbell around 11 p.m. Waving a cigarette butt in his hand, he said, "This was dropped in the parking lot. It's yours, isn't it?"

"When I denied it," relates Hojo, "he shouted, 'You liar! You're the only smoker living in this building!' Finally I couldn't take it any more. I'm thinking of moving out."

Case 2 introduces an immature married couple who team up to treat smokers as criminals. In Case 3, the wife of a friend sprays a guest arriving at her front door, who happens to be a smoker, with aerosol deodorizer.

And in Case 4, during a "gokon" (matchmaking party) an agreeable young woman undergoes a complete change of demeanor after a few drinks.

"I just said, 'I'm going to have a smoke now and lit up,'" the man at the party relates. "The smile vanished from her face and she took on the countenance of a demon. 'Put that out, right this minute! If I inhale your secondary smoke, I'll feel sick the next day and unable to do my job. Cigarette smoke spoils the meal too. The cook worked so hard to prepare it --- you should show him some respect. Only Japan permits this kind of behavior. You said you work for a trading company, so surely you know the way it's done in other countries?'"

Spa! also polled its readers regarding smoking etiquette.

During a business discussion at a coffee shop or restaurant, what sort of act concerning smoking do you regard as good manners?

The most common reply was requesting 'Do you mind if I smoke' beforehand, with 57 responses. This was followed by getting up from the table and smoking outside (37); first asking "Do you mind if we sit in the smoking section?" (36); moving to a seat that's downwind from the other person (28); refraining from lighting up until the main meal is finished (28); and blowing smoke in a direction away from you (26).

What sort of action do you take, non-smokers were asked. The most common reply, with 47 responses, was to depart the scene without saying anything. Next came a request not to smoke, so said by 31 respondents. This was followed by even after doing something to catch the smoker's attention without success, then departing the scene (with 27 responses); politely requesting that the person refrain from smoking (26); in situations where ventilation is possible, speaking out and then opening a window or turning on an exhaust fan (21); after complaining out loud, then moving away (17); and try to get the smoker's attention by coughing loudly (16).

Professor Masahiko Shimizu of Nihon Sports Science University, who's a non-smoker, points out that the Supreme Court's 1970 decision on the right to smoke is consistent with the Constitution's Article 13. It states "All of the people shall be respected as individuals. Their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness shall, to the extent that it does not interfere with the public welfare, be the supreme consideration in legislation and in other governmental affairs."

But then in 2003 came the "Health Promotion Act," by which the state became empowered to make decisions on behalf of a person if they constitute a benefit to his or her health. Taken to its logical extreme, worries Shimizu, Japan would revert to aspects of feudalism by which laws created for the public good threaten to interfere with personal rights. It's a matter, concedes the professor, that poses a "big problem." Until it gets worked out to everyone's satisfaction, at the very least, smokers need to mind their manners and abide by common-sense rules.

© Japan Today

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.


153 Comments
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The problem is not only that Japan is decades behind in smoking laws, it's that smokers in Japan are more self-centered and unconcerned with non-smokers around than any other country. It's just bad manners to smoke without asking and to and not consider where your toxic smoke is drifting. I suppose it's an intelligence issue as well - dumb enough to willfully harm yourself, dumb enough to be ignorant of others.

32 ( +41 / -11 )

Japanese complaining out loud about smoking? Yeah sure. Whatever. If that were the case, there'd be a total ban in restaurants already. Late next year, England will make it illegal for someone to smoke inside a car when there is a child. And Japan can't even make sure diners can eat in peace.

The most common reply was requesting ‘Do you mind if I smoke’ beforehand

Never heard that in Japan.

16 ( +23 / -7 )

As a former smoker myself, I would be one of the first to join this group of anti-smokers. It's a disgusting and very unhealthy addiction that severely inconveniences everyone around the person smoking. What igloobuyer said is 100% correct.

20 ( +31 / -11 )

I've gotta say that I found some of those cases very comical! Smokers had their hay-day back in the 60s when a whopping 87% of men smoked and smoking was ubiquitous. Non-smokers had to suffer in silence in almost every public and private area. Now the shoe is on the other foot. Welcome to the New World, smokers!

14 ( +19 / -6 )

what sort of act concerning smoking do you regard as good manners?

Not smoking.

I don't see anything 'psychotic' about the deeds and attitudes described in the article. Deliberately and knowingly burning money, inhaling addictive and harmful substances into your body and contaminating with stinky toxic fumes the air around you that others must breathe - that's psychotic.

18 ( +32 / -15 )

Igloobuyer: yes, people should be considerate, but your attitude essentially calling all smokers stupid is part of the problem. Unless you have absolutely no vices, never overeat, always eat 100% healthy food, exercise daily, and don't get sick, you don't have a right to call smokers stupid for enjoying a vice they know isn't healthy.

2 ( +25 / -23 )

I'd go out on a limb and say that most smokers are people who are dealing with addiction issues. Very few people actually want to smoke, but unfortunately they got addicted when they were young and naive. Instead of treating smokers as disgusting people we should treat them like any other group of people dealing with addiction. Honestly, I'd probably just talk to these people about what they are doing, rather than try and humiliate or embarrass them. I don't like tobacco smoke but I also know that the 'second-hand smoke' fears are massively blown out of proportion.

8 ( +17 / -9 )

who insisted that my smoke was causing his drying laundry balcony to smell of tobacco

That's true. It does, but smokers can't smell smoke. I'm with the smoke haters. Sign me up.

21 ( +29 / -10 )

I find the title highly offensive. Anyone not wanting to eat their cigarette alit, should better put it off in my presence. I'm only going to places where smoking is not allowed...

5 ( +12 / -8 )

Timothy Bedwell

Unless you have absolutely no vices, never overeat, always eat 100% healthy food, exercise daily, and don't get sick, you don't have a right to call smokers stupid for enjoying a vice they know isn't healthy.

The one hugely important difference being, eating unhealthy foods or not exercising are not direct, repulsive nuisances to the people around you. Smoking very much is.

15 ( +28 / -13 )

The smoking in Japan shows the true state of the nation; decades behind, unwilling to change or adopt 'foreign' practices, even when they are so blatantly better.

The amount of smokers here, and the fact that it is basically encouraged and completely socially acceptable is an absolute disgrace to the Japanese, in what is nearly 2015.

8 ( +16 / -9 )

"I'd go out on a limb and say that most smokers are people who are dealing with addiction issues."

That is their problem. They still have no right in public to expose the rest of society to their cancer causing second hand smoke. When my health is at stake and that of my family their addiction means s**t to me and they are always told by me to put it out.

I am sick and tried of having smoke blown in my face walking down the sidewalks here in Nagoya when the city has outlawed public smoking in Naka Ku and Namura Ku and there are sign painted on every 50 feet of sidewalk. The city of Nagoya has encouraged citizens to shame law breaking smokers by coughing loudly and pointing at them - I say absolutely and do it each time.

Their addiction, their problem - not my problem. Addiction is no excuse to expose others to your carcinogens.

13 ( +19 / -8 )

Family restaurants allowing 'parents' to seat their kids in the smoking section - that's psychotic.

21 ( +25 / -6 )

Many people are sickened by the secondhand smoke and there are thousands of nasty chemicals and hundreds are toxic. They can cause many different types of cancer. Secondhand smoke has immediate adverse effects on the cardiovascular system that can cause coronary heart disease, stroke, and increases in the risk of having a hear attack. There is nothing good about second hand smoke. If you're a poison puffer ask yourself why you should continue to smoke and slowly kill yourself. It's never too late to stop being a slave to your cigarette. Go get help.

9 ( +13 / -5 )

The amount of smokers here, and the fact that it is basically encouraged and completely socially acceptable is an absolute disgrace to the Japanese, in what is nearly 2015.

Say what? The smoking rate in Japan is falling every year and is now around 20%. The OECD average is also 20%.

http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/Briefing-Note-JAPAN-2014.pdf

4 ( +11 / -8 )

There is way too much smoking going on in Japan. Why don't they just raise the tobacco tax by 300%.

10 ( +16 / -8 )

Many people are sickened by the secondhand smoke and there are thousands of nasty chemicals and hundreds are toxic. They can cause many different types of cancer. Secondhand smoke has immediate adverse effects on the cardiovascular system that can cause coronary heart disease, stroke, and increases in the risk of having a hear attack.

Sorry to have to break the news to you, but the only time there has been a link between second hand smoke and cancer is in controlled lab experiments where test subjects (animals, not humans) are exposed to huge amounts of second hand smoke. The amount of smoke they are exposed to is much more than a normal person who is exposed to casual second hand smoke. Numerous long term studies have turned up no statistically significant evidence that second hand smoke increases a person's risk of developing cancer (or any of the other things you mentioned).

If you don't like the smell, fine (neither do I!!) but there are many many more things that you are exposed to every day that can have a negative effect on your health than second hand smoke.

-16 ( +11 / -25 )

Second the concern about kids being exposed to smokers. Mostly from their own parents. Never fails to shock me. Yesterday, walking out of my child's daycare (adjacent to a indigent/elderly day home), the oyaji driver for the old folks was smoking directly in front of the daycare entrance. Also, as mentioned about Nagoya, here in Kobe there are many areas where smoking is prohibited and no one enforces anything.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

I don't see anything 'psychotic' about the deeds and attitudes described in the article.

I'd like to see you banging on someone's door in the middle of the night or pick up a cigarette butt and take it to a person's apartment because surely he is the only smoker in existence.

Also the trading company excuse is stupid too as the country's biggest trade partners are China and Korea who smoke much more than the Japaense.

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

I'm asthmatic & live next to a chain smoker, having to deal with her 2x cigarettes from 6am before heading out to work each morning, then I get one wafting through my air con / vents all weekend on the hour, every hour. I agree that Japan is decades behind in anti-smoking laws. But with JT chummy with the govt., things are never going to change. Cogarettes are too cheap here for starters. Govt. is chasing more revenue? Raise cigarette prices. They're $1 (~¥100) a cigarette in Australia.

Smoking areas are also a joke here. They're either in some poorly ventilated "box", or sectioned off by a plate of glass or a partition. Australia leads the world in this area, where all smoking areas must be at least 75% open-air, and a certain distance from the bar / dining area of any establishment. I know for a fact that the UK is basically adopting a carbon copy of the laws.

Again, never going to happen in Japan.

6 ( +13 / -7 )

I don't care if someone smokes outside. I don't care if someone smokes inside either, if there is a closed off smoking room. What bothers me is restaurants where the smoking area is just one half the room - as if the smoke doesn't enter the other half the room. I will sometimes just leave, and definitely won't return, to restaurants like this.

As for smokers wanting to smoke when in a group where there are non-smokers, they should just excuse themselves to go to the smoking area, or to go outside and smoke, rather than imposing on the rest of the group. Asking 'do you mind if I smoke' requires the non-smokers to have to voice objection, which in Japan isn't polite.

6 ( +8 / -3 )

The most common reply was requesting "Do you mind if I smoke" beforehand

Never heard that in Japan.

I have seen that phrase on a JT poster but I have never heard it uttered by a Japanese.

I believe most Japanese people will be reluctant to say "no" directly. Probably that's why this phrase didn't become part of Japanese etiquette.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

I didn't see any examples of extreme behavior in the article.

I think nicotine users should be allowed to indulge their habit, but they shouldj ust inject themselves, like the other druggies, so that they don't harm those around them.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Nice! Smoking is equivalent, in my view, to urinating in public. As much scorn as possible needs to be heaped on these people.

2 ( +13 / -11 )

"Smoking is equivalent, in my view, to urinating in public."

Given how many times I've seen old farts peeing in broad daylight on city streets, I'm not sure shaming will work on these people"

1 ( +8 / -7 )

I think we all need to do what we can in our personal lives to fight back against these people who poison our surroundings and our children.

Don't hire smokers. If smokers work for you, don't give them bonuses or raises. Don't go to restaurants that allow smoking. Don't use personal services (barbers, salons, etc.) where you have to get close to smoker employers. If you're a landlord, don't rent to them. If you live in a condo, call votes to make your building non-smoking.

Every day, wake up and resolve to do something to help Japan become a cleaner country.

-6 ( +8 / -14 )

This will only go so far, as J tobacco is a huge supporter (financially) of J-gov.

This is one of those "we're going to re-double our efforts to put an eye on having a discussion about thinking about how to handle this issue" type of things.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

the problem is a lack of tolerance and common courtesy on both sides. if its a place that allows smoking or outside, if someone ask nicely i am happy to try accommodate them within reason. if they are nasty, i will be nasty. if its a place that doesn't allow smoking, i will not smoke. i've always thought that they most logical way would be to let the person that pays the bill decide. make restaurants/bars/shops/work places choose to be either smoking or non smoking and prominently post notice to that effect. then its up to you whether you patronize/work/visit there or not.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

I always go outside to smoke ! But now I find out that's not good enough? Perhaps non smokers should wear an oxygen filled helmet or some other apparatus. Or I guess I could walk further away into an area that infringes on some one else's rights. It's not a crime. I'm not pregnant, and in my country smoking in a car with an under 18yo is illegal. I personally find the smell of cooked meat offence. But I don't make it an issue, I just move away. What's next? No chocolate because my cloths smell like chocolate? Natto. Grilled Herrings that is a very strong smell and defiantly gets in your cloths. Never thought personal choice would be a subject of debate. I also do agree smoking is disgusting inside, my point, outside is it such a problem when I have to smell disgusting food smells . Let's ban anything that produces an order. Now I guess my armpits will be next...they might offed

-9 ( +7 / -15 )

@Cricky I've never been able to detect someone with BO outside of maybe a three foot radius. Not so with smokers.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

that Hojo guy should have closed the door and call police on the non smoking nazi I understand people saying something about clean air somewhere in the village but if you live in Tokyo or any proper urban environment complaining about second hand smoke is simply idiotic, if you care about fresh air to your lungs - start by banning cars

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

Have to say I am ambivalent about this. I really do not enjoy watching people getting aggressive with each other, especially over something like cigarette smoke. In general common sense prevails, or should prevail, on both sides, but when those rare exceptions occur it may be time to say something.

Unless someone offers me a cigarette, I do not smoke. I first smoked in order to put myself in the shoes of smokers so that I could see the world from all sides and overcome the one-sided dagger-looking hidden inside myself.

By the same token, I often wonder how much damage was done to my developing fetus by the frequent smoking and drinking that my mother was doing when she was pregnant.

1 ( +4 / -4 )

kickboard

Say what? The smoking rate in Japan is falling every year and is now around 20%. The OECD average is also 20%.

http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/Briefing-Note-JAPAN-2014.pdf

Those numbers are a bit misleading, though. As the same PDF report states one page earlier, there is a huge gender gap among tabacco users in Japan: 34% of men, and only 9% of women. From my (observational) experience Japanese women are far more likely to smoke at home or away from other non-smokers, due to manners, whereas Japanese men are more likely to light up in restaurants, cafes, on the street, etc. The result being that when you're out and about, it certainly seems like a lot more than just 20% of people are smokers.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Shesh how far have we come, 20 years ago you could smoke on the trains on the platforms, on buses anywhere, the non smoking section was a joke.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

BuBuBu Not sure if you have seen the research undertaken by the CDC in the USA in relation to second hand smoke deaths and illnesses. This page is worth a read http://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/secondhand_smoke/general_facts/ They estimate 34,000 deaths over a 5 year period for those exposed to second hand smoke and the increased risk of heart disease and the like is high.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I'm a smoker but considerate to others. It's a bit like farting; great fun but not something I choose to inflict on others.

6 ( +10 / -5 )

Finally I couldn’t take it any more. I’m thinking of moving out.”

Mission accomplished?

Case 2 introduces an immature married couple who team up to treat smokers as criminals.

Immature?

In Case 3, the wife of a friend sprays a guest arriving at her front door, who happens to be a smoker, with aerosol deodorizer.

Ha! I've felt the same way.

Hate people who walk and smoke on footpaths (sidewalks) or arcades. Feel like throwing a rock at their inconsiderate head.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

...smokers in Japan are more self-centered and unconcerned with non-smokers around than any other country.

I don't know how you can say that unless you have been to every country in the world. From the countries I have been to, I would say Japan is better than average. Still far to go, but hardly the worst place with regard to smoke. I've been to places where people are offended if you refuse their offer to smoke a cigarette along with them. No such concept as "no smoking" at all.

It's a nasty habit but Japan has improved considerably.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Ted,

BuBuBu Not sure if you have seen the research undertaken by the CDC in the USA in relation to second hand smoke deaths and illnesses. This page is worth a read http://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/datastatistics/factsheets/secondhandsmoke/generalfacts/ They estimate 34,000 deaths over a 5 year period for those exposed to second hand smoke and the increased risk of heart disease and the like is high.

This type of research relies on subjects recollections of the amount of SHS they've been exposed to, hardly an accurate measure of data collection. If you don't live with a smoker you have nothing to worry about. As I said, casual SHS has never been proven to lead to anything. http://www.forbes.com/sites/danielfisher/2013/12/12/study-finds-no-link-between-secondhand-smoke-and-cancer/

I'd much rather believe the results of longitudinal studies of 76,000 subjects over a decade than the anedotal evidence presented by the CDC.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

if someone ask nicely i am happy to try accommodate them within reason. if they are nasty, i will be nasty.

fds, you have no right in the first place to smoke near others since your disgusting habit inflicts harm on others. Your attitude is the one that selfish addicted loser smokers display every day in Japan. Smoke around others to get your fix and then throw the used cigarette on the ground like the world in your ashtray.

Maybe this will help you to understand, if I punch you in the face but then you ask nicely for me to stop, I will do that, but if you act nasty I will punch you more. That is what you are saying due to your sad addiction to nicotine.

Everyday in Japan kids are exposed to second hand smoke just by walking to school and back. All kids in Japan have traces of nicotine poisoning in their blood. Some of these kids will get cancer due to this. That is what you smokers are causing in others, kids in this example. These are facts. Smokers are public health destroyers but yet are still tolerated. So what is posted above is a normal and natural response to a daily threat to individual health for all of us non-smokers.

Bottom line, if you smokers want to get lung cancer and die a miserable death, which is the likely outcome to your filthy habit, do it without harming others.

7 ( +12 / -4 )

Admittedly the air in most major cities is quite hazardous, even without any tobacco smoke, but people still choose to live and bring up their children there.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

To quote me,

Hate people who walk and smoke on footpaths (sidewalks) or arcades.

Apart from breathing in the smoke, I don't want to smell it on my clothes. Especially Winter clothes, the stench accumulates.

If you must smoke and walk, don't do it in crowds, especially when people have to walk alongside you every day.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

If harassing neighbors over bad smells is okay I might tell mine that his stinking meal concoctions are making my clothes smell, Man just wanted a soothing smoke away from his wife probably, folks need to wind their necks in a little

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

Have to agree that smokers are just antisocial.....

7 ( +9 / -3 )

Psychopaths! If there wasn't the smoking they hate so much there would be something else that riles them up and they'd go hate-crazed about. Besides, smoking isn't all bad as science has found: http://news.discovery.com/human/health/smoking-is-good-for-you.htm

-5 ( +7 / -11 )

@zurcronium, so if a place smoking is allowed, i'm not allowed cause you are there? and you call me a selfish loser? lol! while i acknowledge your arguments, smoking is not quite the same as getting punched in face and name calling doesn't make your arguments any better. like i said the problem is a lack of tolerance and common courtesy and you just proved it.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

@ebisen

Anyone not wanting to eat their cigarette alit, (alight?) should better put it off (out?) in my presence

Are you saying that if I were smoking in a place where smoking is permitted and you came along you would try and make me eat my lit cigarette? That would be interesting.

4 ( +5 / -2 )

Smokers antisocial? Go to a western bar and most people are in the Designated smoking area? Might be 10 people in the non smoking area great good for them, the rest of the crowd are in the outside designated smoking area talking and being very social. Even at work the smoking area is a place for casual interaction? I'm not justifying smoking as its a disgusting habit, but the anger is probably more unhealthy than the actual threat. There are areas designated for smoking. There should be designated areas for cooking stinky foods?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Cricky - while stinky foods may well be an annoyance - as stinky people can also be - I've yet to read credited scientific proof that such aromas promote cancer & a myriad of other health problems for the 2nd party.

And all people against tobacco smoke poisoning are not angry. The fact that smokers can enjoy a camaraderie is great, but not everyone else wants to indulge in their kindred spirit habit.

The simple bottom line is, as always, smoking is not a zone contained habit, therefore its public use should be resricted - like peeing.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

This issue is all about freedom really. Smokers are increasingly portraying themselves as freedom fighters struggling against restraints imposed by a nanny state. In fact they are fools who allow themselves to become addicted to nicotine and enslaved to big tobacco and the taxman. Their addiction controls them so tightly that they can't even think about the freedom of others to breathe clean air. Smoking is an insult to freedom. It's blowing smoke in liberty's face.

I'm also amused by smokers' claims about all the other pollutants that may be more dangerous than their smoke. Over the past few decades, vehicle manufacturers have radically reduced emission levels. What have cigarette manufacturers done to reduce the deadly pollution caused by their products? Well they've stopped using asbestos in the filters, but otherwise the products are worse than ever.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Where can I order hundreds of those stickers in the illustration? I want to put them up on every 100% non-smoking restaurant and izakaya (yes, they exist), so patrons know what to expect and enjoy when they enter. Also, I would want to plaster them all over my local pedestrian overpass as it is trashed beyond endurance by selfish, trashy smokers and their stupid butts. Next, I would post them on every pole in my neighborhood.

If I see someone smoking in a nonsmoking area, I ask them politely but pointedly to no smoke. Riding the bike around, I am happy to yell out "kochira tabako dame"...with a smile on my face. Every day, everyone should strike a blow for the right not to inhale those cancer clouds. Step by step, this society is going to change and ban smoking everywhere. Including apartment balconies. It's a huge issue in this crowded society.

The Olympics 2020 just may be what forces Japan to come to grips with the true huge cost to business (I don't eat or drink in smoking places), health costs, and dirty streets.

I encourage everyone to find 100% nonsmoking places in their neighborhood and post them to Facebook. Mine is "Nonsmoking Ryogoku" and I am finding quite a few places to promote. It is good to be proactive.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

“A couple of years ago, I was in the habit of going out on my apartment’s balcony for a smoke,” a man named Hojo recalls. “Then I received a complaint from the neighbor upstairs, who insisted that my smoke was causing his drying laundry balcony to smell of tobacco.”

I can't count the number of times my laundry has smelled like tobacco when I brought it in from the veranda because of smokers having to have to get their fix nearby.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Carry a cigar with you to restaurants. If smokers near you ignore your request that they not light up, wait till they start eating, then pull out the cigar and send some smoke clouds their way. Then they'll get the message. :)

0 ( +6 / -5 )

For the record, I'm not a smoker but the following is just ridiculous:

Everyday in Japan kids are exposed to second hand smoke just by walking to school and back. All kids in Japan have traces of nicotine poisoning in their blood. Some of these kids will get cancer due to this. That is what you smokers are causing in others, kids in this example. These are facts.

These are lies, actually. I'd be a lot more worried about the massive amounts of carcinogens they are exposed to from car exhaust. Do you drive a car Zurcronium? If yes, you are poisoning our children.

From the Journal of the National Cancer Institute:

The incidence of lung cancer was 13 times higher in current smokers and four times higher in former smokers than in never-smokers, and the relationship for both current and former smokers depended on level of exposure. However, among women who had never smoked, exposure to passive smoking overall, and to most categories of passive smoking, did not statistically significantly increase lung cancer risk. The only category of exposure that showed a trend toward increased risk was living in the same house with a smoker for 30 years or more.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Talking about ultra-sensitive smoke-haters... I enjoy putting a non-lit cigarette in the mouth and then enter non-smoking areas and being amused by all the nervous looks and sometimes some officials confront me: This is a non-smoking area! On which I reply: i'm not smoking, am I?! It always drives them mad that they can't even protest for a person to hold a non-burning cigarette.

-8 ( +6 / -13 )

I hate smoking, but I have to respect that others have the right to smoke. If an adult wants to destroy himself through smoking, he's pretty much free to do it. That being said, the smoker should be respectful of his collateral impact on non-smokers and make every reasonable effort to minimize that collateral impact.

1 ( +3 / -1 )

I now understand if I want to smoke it's best I drive into a Forrest and wear a fish bowl on my head just in case a supper sensitive person smelling of fish of vegetables happens by. Don't smoke in rooms, don't smoke near busy pedestrian areas always are considerate of others, hey how about instead of a few seconds of stink people considerate the rights of smokers (it's not illegal). Or that thought offends them so much it's impossible God forbid people should choose to do something slightly dangerous like drinking coffee,or alcohol or having unprotected sex, eating foods that have no bacteria tests, driving a car with exploding airbags, stepping on to the road in front of a bus. There appears to be nothing I can do to make non smokers happy I have shown consideration even a smoke filled Izikya I leave to smoke outside. Perhaps smokers should go to the moon vegans Saturn meat eaters can stay, but vegetarians Saturn.....or we can all be the same.

-7 ( +2 / -8 )

smoking is not quite the same as getting punched in face

One more sign that smokers just don't get it.

the problem is a lack of tolerance and common courtesy

Yes it is. So please be tolerant of ordinary folks' desire to breathe clean air and not have their hair and clothes reeking of smoke stink, and have the common courtesy not to smoke.

how about instead of a few seconds of stink

It is not 'a few seconds of stink'. For someone with even mild asthma, second-hand smoke can mean days of agony and time off work. When you light up, do you check first that there are no asthmatics or people with other respiratory conditions in range of your smoke?

And the smell lingers for hours. You don't notice it because you've cauterised your senses.

Smokers always retort with 'it doesn't necessarily give you cancer' and 'lung cancer isn't always caused by smoke' as if that answered everything. You can inconvenience people as much as you like, so long as you don't actually kill them? And if you do kill them, just claim it might have been something else?

.....or we can all be the same

Yes, please do be the same as sensible people. Don't smoke.

2 ( +6 / -3 )

Walked into an Indian restaurant yesterday and the waft of cigarette smoke hit me real quick.Definitely not a nice touch.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Don't worry I will be dead soon (aparantly) then there will be one less person enjoying life and many more eating drinking and sucking up all the toxins that sorrond us. Excuse me for being considerate and going outside. I do not condone smoking at all but it was ok when I started. After it was too late, for me. If I am considerate please show the reciprocal consideration. Isn't that fair? Or do your opinions supersede everyone's.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I must say that I prefer the Japanese laws over my own country Sweden. Correct me if I'm wrong but Tokyo for example, people are only allowed to smoke in designated areas and the property owner decides whether its okay to smoke in their restaurant or not. I think that gives you the freedom to avoid smoke if you want to and can choose restaurants where smoking is not allowed.

In Sweden its pretty much the opposite. People are allowed to smoke anywhere in public areas but it's illegal to smoke in restaurants. That makes it really hard for non-smokers to avoid smoke when they're out on the streets. I'd prefer if they changed it to the Japanese way, that way people has the option to avoid smoking areas and smokers have their spot where they can smoke. Much more liberal.

But then again, I might've gotten it all wrong.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Don't worry I will be dead soon (aparantly) then there will be one less person enjoying life

My Mum used to excuse her smoking by saying 'It's my only pleasure'. She was dead at 50, heart failure complicated by respiratory problems. She never got to see any of her kids graduate from uni or get married, never saw any of her beautiful grandchildren or great-grandchildren.

If that's your idea of 'enjoying life', knock herself out.

it was ok when I started

In that case you will be dead soon anyway from old age. It hasn't been 'ok' for a very, very long time. You're in your 80s or later?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I'm not a smoker - but I have to say some of the vindictive self-righteousness and self-appointed vigilantism coming from some non-smokers is disconcerting.

The rapid transition from being a society which actively endorsed and promoted smoking - to one seeks to eradicate it because it's an unhealthy addiction, a financial burden on the health system is at times hurried, unreasonably cruel, insensitive, unsympathetic and - at times – just nasty!

Societal/governmental endorsement permitted the rise and spread of the smoking phenomena. It was a socially acceptable addiction (like drinking). It became ingrained as a normal recreational habit. Not everyone partook – but a vast proportion of society did. As recognition of the negative impacts of smoking (most notably on health) slowly emerged and, presumably, the government ‘bean counters’ around the world realised that the (financial) benefits of permitting this addiction were outweighed by the cost of maintaining it (e.g. impact on the health budget): policy shift – good is now bad.

Let’s be clear here: the smoking lobbyists are winning. The victory is inevitable. The trajectory of society opinion is moving inexorably in the right direction. Comparatively speaking the gradual disappearance of smoking has been rapid: tobacco was introduced to my country, the UK, in the mid 16th century – and to Japan in the late 16th century. 500 years of mostly approved consumption led to perpetual growth in usage and a global (taxable) industry. An October 2014 UK estimate indicated that usage was at now it’s ‘lowest since records began: around 20% - compared to over 50% of adults in the 1940’s).

Inevitably a social phenomena which took centuries to grow may take a few generations for that transition to be completed if it is to be achieved painlessly and sensitively. And I would assert that sensitivity is essential – since we, the same society are the ones who made this addiction acceptable in the first place.

Alternatively - we could just take we the quick route: willfully intimidate individuals into no longer taking part in a recreational habit which was, until recently, the recreational habit of the majority. And because it’s now officially promoted as ‘bad’ behaviour – we needn’t be retrained in our hounding. Right is on our side. Maybe we don’t even have to regard smokers as ‘people’ anymore – they’re pariahs – or, as I read in another comment thread recently: ‘evil murderers’. It’s much easier to be aggressive to individuals if we regard them as inhuman. We don’t need to burden ourselves with sympathy or tolerance. Tobacco witch hunts are now socially and morally acceptable – as well as quick and decisive.

But wait – it’s an addiction. Telling people that something which was once ‘good’ (and yes – cigarettes were marketed by some brands as healthy) is now ‘evil’ is all very well – but knowing something you’re now addicted to isn’t good for you doesn’t magically endow you with psychological strength or will to kick the habit – any more than someone punching you in the face for biting my nails is going to make the onychophagia stop. In fact – it might even intensify your yearning.

Only sympathetic and patient support is going to help an individual overcome an addiction. Yet what tobacco ‘addicts’ now have to endure is both an addiction that destroys their bodies AND the social status of a leper. (Incidentally – if you’re poor there’s a statistically much higher chance that you’ll become a leper – but that’s ok. They’re addicts because they failed themselves – not because we seduced them into a profitable habit.........and then changed our minds).

The transition from being acceptable to unacceptable interests me. It’s happened throughout history. The fact that such transitions occur doesn’t bother me – for example I don’t think I’ll mourn the disappearance of smoking. But, as someone who enjoys an occasional whiskey I might be more resistant to aggressive vigilantism directed at alcohol drinkers – which is, after all, probably tobacco’s nearest competitor in terms of its contribution to antisocial behaviour and poor health.

It’s HOW the transition occurs that bothers me. Why does it have to be so nasty?

My theory: the self-justifying animosity and self-appointed vigilantism is also a symptom of a latent anger within large swathes of our communities. And I don’t believe cigarettes are the source of that anger. The cigarettes are merely a symbol. A symbol of our lack of power and control over our environment. You can remove the symbol – but that won’t remove the sense of powerlessness and insignificance at the source of the anger. It will simply be re-directed (or steered) toward the next socially (majority) approved bête noir – whatever that might be (alcohol? noisy people? Obese people? Young people? Immigrants? Muslims? The Chinese etc etc.).

Comparative example: I was recently on a train. A young guy was listening to some dance music on his iPhone (with earphones). A uniformed soldier on the train decided, supposedly on behalf of the whole train (even though there was no prior consultation), to demand that the youth turned his music off because ‘It’s annoying EVERYONE’. The soldier was extremely threatening and aggressive in his demand. The young man, who was visibly terrified by the huge beast threatening him, complied. No one on the train objected to this act of aggression except me (whereupon I was subjected to a similarly aggressive response from the uniformed bully.........well - I’d aligned myself to the ENEMY after all!).

Whether the silence of the majority was because they agreed that people who listen to their music too loudly in public places are annoying and need to be put in their place – or whether it was because they were simply too scared to question this self-righteous bully for fear that his aggression would be directed toward them - I can’t be sure. What I can say is that, on balance, I found the soldiers self-justifying aggression much more disconcerting and worrying than the 'btoom btoom btoom' of the young man’s music.

Final observation – which I say as a non-smoker: I would much rather live in a society where smokers blew smoke directly into my face than a society where I can be subjected to the willful anger of a bunch of vigilantes who have decided that my behaviour is unacceptable and that they are therefore justified in intimidating me.

-2 ( +7 / -8 )

I'm 100% against smoking in general, and VERY against people who smoke in non-smoking areas, or public areas where others are obviously subjected to the smoke. That said, the non-smokers in the four examples at the beginning of the article are extremists who create problems on the other side of the spectrum. If the building permits smoking, they have absolutely ZERO right to be doing what they are doing in the first example, and the person should have the right to call the police and/or complain to the landlord/owner about harassment and file charges. If someone ASKED the man kindly not to smoke on his balcony and he kept doing it, they can grumble and complain but so long as they moved into the building after being informed (or at least with information available) that it was a building that allowed smoking, too bad! If they can't hack it, THEY should move, not the man who smokes! Or petition the owner to make it a non-smoking building, and if the owner does, after a certain period of notice, THEN something about the smoker can be done. As for the woman who sprayed her guests with a can of deodorizer upon entering her house, if it were me (and I don't smoke) I'd tell the sprayer to stick the can where the sun doesn't shine and leave -- no need to visit someone so rude.

But those are extreme cases. For the most part what people have posted is true -- that Japan is archaic in terms of making things harder for people to smoke, and doesn't enforce any laws prohibiting people from smoking in the first place. "Smoking areas" that have FINALLY been moved out of the lobby of public buildings (after they were moved to the lobbies a few feet from the working desks) have simply been put in the entrance ways, and nothing is really going to change until prices get jacked up CONSIDERABLY (not just a few yen over two decades).

CGB Spender: "I enjoy putting a non-lit cigarette in the mouth and then enter non-smoking areas and being amused by all the nervous looks and sometimes some officials confront me: This is a non-smoking area! On which I reply: i'm not smoking, am I?! It always drives them mad that they can't even protest for a person to hold a non-burning cigarette."

So you enjoy walking around with a cigarette in your mouth and praying someone walks up to you with the valid concern you might want to light up in a non-smoking area? On the days that no one speaks up do you feel sad? maybe start intentionally bumping into people in the hopes they might try and challenge the power trip you for some reason needed to go on? My friend's two year old makes similar cries for attention, minus the cigarettes.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

CLEO my father died at 52 he didn't smoke or drink, when I started smoking it was cool, Cowboys, movie stars now I know it's an expression of failure on my part. I do understand your disgust and try to distance myself from people at appropriate times.. Aside from trying to give up that is harder than Heroin. I do think there should be areas set aside for people who are partaking in a activity that is repulsive to people like you.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Cricky I'm sorry your father died at such a young age. The fact that some people who lead apparently healthy lives die young for non-smoking-related reasons doesn't mean that smoking doesn't kill. My point is that if she hadn't been a heavy smoker, my mother would not have died of a smoking-related condition when she did. Similarly my father would not have died in his early sixties from a heart attack, after spending two decades a semi-invalid suffering repeated minor heart attacks. They might both still be alive today.

Smoking was never cool, except in the adverts.

2 ( +3 / -2 )

like i said the problem is a lack of tolerance and common courtesy

fds, again, I repeat myself, smoking around others is the first offense. You are poisoning others. But you expect others who suffer from your selfish addiction to offer you courtesy and tolerance. It is the nicotine talking here, as clearly the 5000 chemicals in tobacco have has eroded your intellect.

Here are the facts on second hand smoke and kids . . .The conclusion that secondhand smoke causes respiratory effects in children is widely shared and virtually undisputed. Even the tobacco industry does not contest these effects in its media and public relations campaign.

EPA estimates that every year, between 150,000 and 300,000 children under 1-1/2 years of age get bronchitis or pneumonia from breathing secondhand tobacco smoke, resulting in thousands of hospitalizations. In children under 18 years of age, secondhand smoke exposure also results in more coughing and wheezing, a small but significant decrease in lung function, and an increase in fluid in the middle ear. Children with asthma have more frequent and more severe asthma attacks because of exposure to secondhand smoke, which is also a risk factor for the onset of asthma in children who did not previously have symptoms.

3 ( +6 / -2 )

I don't want to seem mean, but when you smoke, it's not just affecting the smoker, it's affecting everyone around the smoker. Folks are starting to figure that out now, hence the haters.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

I get that some people have strong feelings about smoking, but this is going too far. Especially Case 1. Disrupting someone late at night to shout at them is disturbing the peace, which in many countries is a criminal offence. If you treat people with respect and show manners, you'll find that they're more willing to cooperate. Ask someone to stop smoking on the balcony, instead of shouting at them like a raving lunatic. Case 2 is pretty pathetic as well, and (depending on the couple's exact behaviour) can be classified as harassment, a criminal offence. Case 3 sounds like assault to me. What if that crazy woman had blinded that poor smoker? They'd be well within their rights to sue. Case 4 is the only one I agree with. It's pretty rude to just light up in the middle of a meal like that.

Smoking in public places (shopping centres, restaurants and so on) and in workplaces should be banned, but in open air environments or at home should be left alone. This borderline vigilante behaviour is only going to cause more problems than it'll solve. Have these people ever even tried understanding why a person takes up smoking? Not everyone does so because they like tobacco. About 90% of the colleagues at my workplace (myself included) smoke to help alleviate the stress that we're subjected to on a daily basis. Having smoke haters lecturing us would only make that far worse, and someone (probably me) would end up snapping. Fortunately I live in the UK, where such behaviour isn't commonplace, or acceptable.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Don't see any mention of e-cigarettes. Just wondering what people think of second hand e-cig vapor. I quit nicotine altogether long ago but my brother e-cigs at my house and since he's my brother I don't care but wonder what others think. I know people can get annoyed by habits people have that produce an odor. Tobacco stinks but what if the smell were fruity and delicious?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Everything you consume is foreign body to your own body. Nothing is 'healthy', just necessary to live through the day. Get caught in the endless loop of that thought and die of starvation before you resort to violence, Fascist commentators.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

Their addiction, their problem - not my problem.

Since they are blowing smoke in your face, then, yeah, it is your problem. I think many on this thread don't seem to understand.

It is your problem. Because these people's addiction is affecting your life.

In my youth, smoked for a time. I was addicted to nicotine. I stopped soon enough. And not because neighbors and strangers gave me a hard time. In fact, it just made all that easier to light up another spite cig. Y'know, "you ain't the boss of me," and all that. Because part of the whole reason I had started to smoke in the first was because it was 'cool' and 'bad.'

Rebel. Rebel.

I guess what I am saying is this: Stamping and screaming "STOP!!!!! YOUR BAD!!!!! " is counter productive to what you want.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I know people can get annoyed by habits people have that produce an odor. Tobacco stinks but what if the smell were fruity and delicious?

The smell of cigarette smoke is a warning, like the odor they put in gas so you know when it's leaking. If you can smell it, you know it's harming you. So e-cigarettes, whether odorless or perfumed, worry me. Even without the smoke, nicotine is very dangerous, especially to the circulatory system. It causes vasoconstriction and endothelial damage, leading to high blood pressure and clogged arteries. Nicotine also triggers the fight or flight response, causing fats and sugars to be pumped into the bloodstream.

Another danger from e-cigarettes is explosion. Apparently if they are charged incorrectly or with the wrong type of charger, they can go off like firecrackers. And the sweet smells added to the nicotine mix make them attractive to children. I've heard reports of small children dying or becoming very ill after drinking e-cig. fluid.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I don't like smokers around, but they should be allowed to smoke in their own homes and apartments.

In the U.S. several cities ban smoking inside apartments, which is insane. If the housing company forbids it, and puts it in a contract, fine. But banning by law what people can do in their own homes is totalitarian.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I personally hate cigarette smoke - it makes me feel ill - and, I hate when my kids have to be around it. However, I have to say that I am rarely bothered by it anymore in Japan. Compared with 20 years ago there are so many more smoke-free areas, and I really appreciate that! I think it's great that smokers are more aware of how uncomfortable their smoke makes others, but I see no need to treat them like criminals or idiots.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I don't like smokers around, but they should be allowed to smoke in their own homes and apartments.

In apartment buildings it's virtually impossible to prevent smoke from seeping from one apartment into others Smoke travels through ventilation systems, wiring conduits, under doors... So those who want to smoke should be responsible for containing their emissions.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Icarus - thans for your insightful penning. Interesting.

However you condense it all into an ultimatum of only 2 scenarios

1) blowing smoke in my face is better than

2) vigilante intimidation.

How about living in a society with no smoke blowing in your face and one free of intimidation. On here some strong opinions have been espoused, by from my humble limiited observations society has been very very tolerant over the years and still now the majority of non-smokers are not your "in-your-face-types". Maybe you move in different circles.

As an addition, while your historical account of the rise and fall of the tobacco empire spanning 5 centuries may have elements of truth, it is obscured by a smoky haze over the real statistics. For 400 years of that time, smoking was a marginal occupation, indulged by few. Tobacco was not ubiquitous. WW1 and govts and tobacco industry soon made smoking the warriors companion - read men - and it grew unabated. Tobacco finally caught the other half - women - post WW2 as a glamorous accesory to the valiant men. So it really has only been established widescale in the world for a couple of generations.

My final commment - as has been reiterated ad nauseum - keep the residue of your habit within the confines of your body and I then will have no qualms with your free choice of your poison. Like the guy sitting on the next table to me now enjoying his Saturday morning coffee & what looks like a ham & salad bagel. If he keeps it all on his side I will be ok., but if he spits, sprays that coffee my way or flicks his mouth droppings & crumbs onto me, then sorry I will gently put forward mmy objection.

Call me a vigilante!

6 ( +7 / -1 )

In apartment buildings it's virtually impossible to prevent smoke from seeping from one apartment into others

Is your apartment made of wicker?

So those who want to smoke should be responsible for containing their emissions.

I might agree if it were only cigarette smoke to be concerned about, but there are also automobiles and factory smoke stacks in the world. Anyone so very sensitive to cigarette smoke should be sensitive to those also. And if not, and its only cigarette smoke they notice, I would say they have some minor schizophrenia going on. But if they are sensitive to all the above, they should do something about the air quality of their own apartment, beginning with moving out of the third world apartment building they are currently living in.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Have to add my wheezy voice to anyone disgusted by balcony smoke.

We can't open our windows AT ALL due to smoke wafting up from the balcony below us. Even with the windows tightly shut, our kitchen fan sucks in air vented from the balcony. (Thank the technology gods for split aircon!)

There's even a guy down from us a bit who habitually drops unextinguished butts on the corridor outside his apartment door, leaving obvious burn marks on the rubberized surface. He ignores a sign that was taped in front of his door by management back in the summer that this be stopped.

As long as smoking is permitted by law none of this antisocial behavior is likely to change.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

they should do something about the air quality of their own apartment, beginning with moving out of the third world apartment building they are currently living in.

Great idea. Please give the address of the hermetically sealed bubble you live in.

Smokestacks and vehicle emissions are of concern. There are many hazards in the world. So the logical thing is to allow nicotine heads to add a new risk to the mix. Right?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I will make it easy for everyone "as long as the Japan government is in bed with Japan tobacco with a majority of the politicians heavily invested with big tobacco it will take a very large group of voters to make the change. My biggest issue is the heavy smoking right at the entrance, everyone is exposed more so, bicycle riders smoking and the worst is your walking down a nice path and finally get a rare smell of nature only for it to be ruined by the stench of someone smoking

3 ( +4 / -1 )

theres an old saying, the residue of smoking is smoke which gets into everybodys clothes/hair even if your a non smoker, as a non smoker I like to drink, the residue of my habbit is pee, smokers wouldnt like it if I pi``ed all over there hair or clothes would they!?

5 ( +7 / -2 )

So the logical thing is to allow nicotine heads to add a new risk to the mix. Right?

No. The logical thing is to do what you can do and fight the battles you can win. You can seal cracks and you can install air filters, you can strategically place fans, and yes, you can move.

I have lived in many, many apartments over decades, none hermetically sealed, but never smelled cigarette smoke in my own place. And I hate that stuff too!

I once had a friend who complained that his upstairs neighbor backed his car in to park outside my friend's place, then warmed it up for over an hour in the morning with exhaust blowing straight through his balcony and into his sliding doors. That sir, was a legit complaint.

Your complaint is on the level of claiming you smell the farts you heard in the next apartment. I am telling you, it may be mild schizophrenia.

As long as smoking is permitted by law none of this antisocial behavior is likely to change.

Hilarious! The number of changes in smoking behaviors without banning smoking is simply phenomenal! Smoking rates have plummeted, non-smoking areas have been created, and most smokers I know instinctively go outside to smoke without even asking anyone if they can smoke indoors.

Man. Just another great piece of evidence that anti-smokers have lost their minds! Monumental changes have occurred. Anti-smokers act like they never happened!

-7 ( +2 / -8 )

Your complaint is on the level of claiming you smell the farts you heard in the next apartment. I am telling you, it may be mild schizophrenia.

I've never heard or smelt farts from the next apartment. Is that a problem where you live? Thanks for the barroom psychological diagnosis, but I think most people, including the Surgeon-General of the U.S., the WHO and even tobacco companies now recognize that second-hand smoke is a real and not an imaginary hazard.

How does your friend's problem with car exhaust blowing in his balcony windows for an hour compare with my problem of a smoker lighting up every 20 minutes all through the day on the next balcony?

And for the record, I never made the comment about smokers' antisocial behavior not changing as long as it's permitted by law. I hope, fondly perhaps, that smokers will grow some moral fiber and realize that it's wrong to do something that harms other people, even if it happens to be legal. Prohibition is never a solution. That said, I'm convinced that tobacco is only legal because of its long history. If it was discovered today, it would be classed with heroine and opium.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I'm not a smoker, but I still advocate for the e-cigs. I still catch public transportation in my state, but 99% of the time I'm at a bus stop there is guaranteed to be a smoker there completely ignoring the "no smoking" signs posted at the bus and train stops. The least they could do is use an e-cig. Ban burning tobacco period. Make them all use the e-cigs if they must.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I'm convinced that tobacco is only legal because of its long history. If it was discovered today, it would be classed with heroine and opium.

Which would be ridiculous - same as having these drugs illegal is ridiculous. The war on drugs is a failure. Drug addiction needs to be treated as a mental health issue, not a criminal issue.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Even if this article is half-true it warms my heart. I have a very long list of complaints against smokers. On top of this list is the young woman with the cellphone who burned me with her cigarette as I was passing. I showed her the burn mark and she just nodded and went on talking. Yes, we had a neighbor in our apartment building who smoked on his balcony and made us miserable. We complained to the manager and he has knocked it for now. There are the many creeps who I've had to deal with at bus stops and other non-smoking places who would give me a smug smile when I asked to stop and kept on smoking. (I used to tell them smoking is forbidden ; now, with by rudest intonation, I simply say that I detest tobacco and they stop.) My all time "favorites" are the creepoids who smoke between cars on the Shinkansen.

Recently the Starbucks in Motomachi made their outdoor area totally non-smoking. Yay! The smoke used to blow inside.

I could go on. Let me conclude that at one time non-smokers were on the defensive in Japan. It is nice to see the tables have turned. There are many places where I would not dine because of smoke that are now open to me. I can now complain about smokers in my apartment building and be taken seriously. No longer must I search out the lone non-smoking car on the Shinkansen.

The smokers have all my sympathy if they are desperately trying to quit.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Which would be ridiculous - same as having these drugs illegal is ridiculous. The war on drugs is a failure. Drug addiction needs to be treated as a mental health issue, not a criminal issue.

I couldn't agree more. I was simply trying to highlight the hypocrisy that surrounds tobacco and drugs in general. Heroin, cocaine and opium are illegal because they're addictive and harmful. Tobacco is also very addictive and harmful but legal purely because it generates huge profits and tax revenues.

However, tobacco also needs to be approached as a public health issue because the effects of second-hand smoke.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I quit smoking a long time ago, but seeing the ridiculous persecution of smokers referred to here, I am almost tempted to start again.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

@smithinjapan I typically don't need to hope for a conflict because usually some crazed militant non-smoker is around who think they must portray their (non-existent) authority. Try me! Oh, I don't do this for power trips. I don't need that. I do this because it's fun to take the pi** with such overly extremist people that militant non-smokers are. You've pretty much explained them yourself in your comment. It's a subtle act of rebellion in a world full of nut jobs.

-8 ( +2 / -9 )

"If you don't like the smell, fine (neither do I!!) but there are many many more things that you are exposed to every day that can have a negative effect on your health than second hand smoke."

Very true and keeping smoking out of public keeps one more from us being exposed to. More nonsmoking laws.

6 ( +7 / -2 )

Man. Just another great piece of evidence that anti-smokers have lost their minds! Monumental changes have occurred. Anti-smokers act like they never happened!

Of course we know that has happened, but its not enough. Just because you selfish smokers use to be able to smoke on planes does not mean you have a right to smoke on the streets where you poison others. In NYC half the population has traces of nicotine in their blood due to second hand smoke, and NYC is highly regulated. In Japan all kids show evidence of nicotine poisoning. These are facts that you addicted losers cannot dispute.

There is an interesting pathology reflected in the posts above, smokers want to smoke more now that they know the rest of the world knows their disgusting habit is harmful. So basically smokers who are killing themselves respond by wanting to smoke more, killing themselves faster. And taking glee in harming others that are near them when they get their pitiful fix. Heroin users are not so selfish and angry.

No one is stopping you from smoking, addicts. No one stops people from committing suicide either. Stop smoking around others if you have any moral character left.

1 ( +6 / -4 )

Some smokers can be pretty obnoxious, but some anti-smokers are even more obnoxious.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Strranger - Some anti-smokers can be pretty obnoxious, but some smokers are even more obnoxious.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

That's true as well. Depends on the smoker and depends on the anti-smoker.

My point was that being a non-smoker doesn't mean one isn't obnoxious.

2 ( +3 / -2 )

"Smokers"

Nicotine addicts. Why else would they deliberately suck that smelly smoke into their lungs?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Jake Lonergan: "I once had a friend who complained that his upstairs neighbor backed his car in to park outside my friend's place, then warmed it up for over an hour in the morning with exhaust blowing straight through his balcony and into his sliding doors. That sir, was a legit complaint."

It's not a valid complaint at all unless you are saying the cigarette smoke blowing (or billowing) into your apartment is also valid. If you say one is not, the other is not. It's not just a 'third world' apartment or house that the smell of smoke from neighbouring areas can drift into, my friends. Ever hear of a vent? Well, air can go in just as it goes out. You ever had a fan or the air-conditioner running? well, guess what, air can and does get in via those ducts/holes, etc., as well as, of course, in open windows or balconies. I'm not saying smoking should not be allowed to tenants who have signed a contract to rent a place that is CLEARLY smoking -- I agree with you -- but I don't think people who complain about the smoke/smell getting into the rooms is invalid. As has been pointed out above, the best one can hope for is to have a calm, rational talk with the smoker (or non-smoker if they are complaining) and reach some sort of compromise. If you know the neigbour has laundry out, maybe you try not to smoke on your balcony. Or likewise if once in a while you DO have smoke wafting in to your place from a smoker you close your windows and try not to make a fuss -- maybe they are trying to meet your requests but forgot and lit up outside, or they don't want to/can't leave the apartment.

"Your complaint is on the level of claiming you smell the farts you heard in the next apartment. I am telling you, it may be mild schizophrenia."

Not even remotely comparable, save that the two involve smells. I don't think I need to tell you that the composition of cigarette smoke and that of someone's affluvium is extremely different. Your walls aren't going to turn yellow and sticky (we hope!) from passing wind all day -- there's no residue like there is with nicotine and other chemicals in cigarettes. And of course I don't need to tell you that, while sickening, someone's gas isn't going to hurt you while second-hand smoke DOES.

In any case, again, it's simply overbearing and stupid for the people in example number one to do what they are doing, and it's even criminal if they are harrassing the smoker. THEY should move, or they should petition to have the owner make the building non-smoking. If you walk into a cafe that allows smoking, sit in the smoking section, and start telling off people who have lit up or are going to, you need to get your head screwed on and move to the non-smoking section.

CGB Spender: "...because usually some crazed militant non-smoker is around who think they must portray their (non-existent) authority"

That's not entirely different from what you are doing by literally provoking people only so you can portray your own. And even if you don't agree, it's pretty childish, and I'm willing to bet that there are those occasions where someone just thinks you may be about to light up and are pointing out that's not the area to do it. They may be mistaken, you know... not realize you're walking around seeking out the militant types you mention just for fun and think you just may not be aware... but I don't think they deserve to be corrected like that by someone doing what you're doing as they are just being conscientious.

"It's a subtle act of rebellion in a world full of nut jobs."

I don't know about 'subtle', the way you described it. Nor do I really see it as rebellion, and I do think the odd bit of rebellion is okay. Definitely a lot of nutjobs, as well. But then, couldn't the latter term be applied to someone who spends time walking into non-smoking areas with an un-lit cigarette to get a rise out of non-smokers just for fun?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I quit smoking 10 years ago but I would love to take it up again to just annoy the self righteous antismoker wankers. It's legal and if a smoker is smoking in a non-prohibited area then tough titties to anyone nearby. Those of you who single out Japan as having inconsiderate smokers then try travelling to other countries.

-5 ( +4 / -10 )

It's legal and if a smoker is smoking in a non-prohibited area then tough titties to anyone nearby.

Legality reflects the morality of the politicians who write the laws, and most of them have nicotine on their fingers. You should set your standards higher.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Uh oh, look look, knowitbetter smithinjapan once again feels the need to correct others of what is right and what is wrong. "Mom, somebody is wrong on the Internet!" It doesn't matter what you think, smith. But I must say I envy you! Envy you for obviously having a vast amount of time to write tomes of comments on JT! ... On a second thought, actually no, I don't envy you. As I know better ways to spend my time than that. So instead I pity you.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

What some people are doing here is arguing vs. the straw man. Some anti-smokers are too extreme, I agree. However, I am guessing these cases are about 1% of non-smokers. So these arguments present a false dichotomy: since "most" non smokers are "so rude and extreme", the status quo should remain, and smokers should be able to smoke basically anywhere and anytime they want...Well and throw in a few tables in one corner of the room and label it the "non-smoking section"!

3 ( +6 / -3 )

I think at the rate things are going, by 2020 the only place in Japan you can smoke in public is a bar--it won't be allowed even in a izakaya establishment that serves real food.

Despite what everyone thinks about Starbucks, the decision by Starbucks Japan to strictly ban smoking in their coffee houses actually attracted a lot of new business, especially among female customers. I'm actually surprised that Doutor and the various coffee houses owned by UCC haven't followed Starbucks' example to attract more female customers in the long run.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Looking forward to having no smoking in all izakayas, restaurants, and basically anywhere indoors. I wonder if in 500 years in the future people will still be sucking those cancer sticks and exhaling noxious fumes all over anyone who happens to be breathing nearby.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I think at the rate things are going, by 2020 the only place in Japan you can smoke in public is a bar--it won't be allowed even in a izakaya establishment that serves real food.

You cannot smoke in bars in most European countries and most states in the US. Japan will eventually go the same way.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I smoke. I try to be considerate. If it's posted as non smoking, I don't smoke. If someone asks me politely if I would mind not smoking, I generally do so. But get in my face about it, acting like a maniac and I will react, badly. Non smokers do not have the right to act like fascists or to control other people's lives. If you want me to respect your request not to smoke, you need to respect my right to do so in appropriate circumstances.

0 ( +4 / -5 )

If someone asks me politely if I would mind not smoking, I generally do so.

You seem to assume that if no-one asks you not to smoke, they're happy with it. That's a false assumption. Most people are reluctant to take that step, especially in Japan. In most cases, the people that do ask you to stop are probably feeling desperate after putting up with your fumes and hoping in vain that you'll stop of you own accord.

Perhaps you could define what you consider appropriate circumstances for smoking.

3 ( +4 / -2 )

Anyone not wanting to eat their cigarette alit, should better put it out in my presence.

I'm only going to places where smoking is not allowed...

Lucky for the smokers .... they won't have their lit cigarettes jammed down their throats by Ebisen.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@Alan,

ping-pong! You called out what 95% of smokers don't get in Japan (be they Japanese or foreigner).

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The problem with smokers is the majority completely lack any consideration for those around them and are hardly aware just how far reaching their habit is in affecting others. They litter their cigarette butts around, they smell like ash trays (it was so bad on time there was a pot luck in the apartment building I used to live in and someone brought cookies, they smoked by the way and nobody at the cookies because they tasted like cig smoke....), even if they smoke in their apartment with their door closed you can smell their smoke coming from behind their door.

Heaven forbid should they open a window because they themselves can't even breathe! All the 2nd hand smoke goes out of their window and affects the non smoking neighbors around them because their neighbors are trying to get fresh air. If an apartment building has a shared ventilation system, all the smoking done in a smokers apartment goes through the vents and into other peoples apartments!

I had to help my mom seal off the vents in her home because I could walk under the main vent and could very clearly smell cig smoke coming through from a smokers apartment. She has 2 air purifiers running almost 24/7 to try and alleviate the smoke getting into her apartment but it's not working well since the purifiers can't really filter out the 2nd hand smoke as well as it can for plan dust particles. Her respiratory health is suffering as a consequence and she's never smoked a day in her life.

Many people who rent out apartments and homes to smokers always always have to do a ridiculous amount of cleaning up and repairing apartments after a smoking tenant leaves. Replacing blinds and curtains, trying to clean or paint over the tar and cig residue that yellows up the walls, and the carpet usually needs a thorough cleaning if not full replacement because the odor of tobacco lingers well after a smoking tenant is gone. And finally the ventilation system and filters need to be replaced and cleaned since the smoke gets EVERYWHERE*.

And many smokers don't seem to realize there are people in the world that have serious chronic respiratory problems that their habit can agitate such as asthma, severe bronchitis, pneumonia etc.

All of the issues I've posted above can so easily be eliminated by completely banning the sales of burning tobacco. Force smokers to use vapor/e cigs for their nicotine fix if they must have it. They'll smell a lot better, the landlords will be happier, it will lessen the chances of them agitating people with respiratory problems, as well as a ton of us non smokers not having to walk away from a smoker because it gets in our clothes/hair and obviously our lungs.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Honest,

recent research indicates that e-cigs produce ten times the amount of nicotine that regular cigs. So that is not a solution at all. It may smell better but it is more deadly to be around an e-cig than a normal stinky cig.

As for the whining from the addict crowd, funny how you want to become the victims when you cause cancer in others, when asking you to stop smoking causes cancer then you will have a right to object to your disgusting habit being challenged by non-smokers. Not that you will ever understand that as the nicotine is your lord and master. Yes you are free to die ten years earlier than non-smokers, in the most horrible way, just do not think you have any right to kill others.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

research indicates that e-cigs produce ten times the amount of nicotine that regular cigs. So that is not a solution at all.

I'm not sure that this blanket statement can be correct. I believe they sell nicotine free stuff for these e-cigs (I don't know what you call the stuff you put in them). If that's the case, then the 10x number would be incorrect.

As for the whining from the addict crowd, funny how you want to become the victims when you cause cancer in others, when asking you to stop smoking causes cancer then you will have a right to object to your disgusting habit being challenged by non-smokers.

That's the thing though - if one is regularly exposed to second hand smoke it will be bad for them, but the occasional inhalation isn't going to kill anyone. That's what makes the militancy of some anti-smokers so obnoxious.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

no surprise to see the huge amount of comments on this article. this topic is one dear to the hearts of so many JT'ers. i like the tone of the article which seems to be firmly of the view that anti=smokers are strange and fanatical and poor hapless smokers are the victims of their unreasonable obsession.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

if one is regularly exposed to second hand smoke it will be bad for them, but the occasional inhalation isn't going to kill anyone

Smokers, along with base-jumpers, train surfers and Russian roulette players, are free to make that kind of risk assessment for themselves, but they have no right to impose it on others.

I fear that the effects of smoke inhalation are cumulative, especially the effects of nicotine on the cardiovascular system, and that harm begins with the very first inhalation. I don't engage in risky behavior that threatens the health and safety of smokers. They should accord me the same courtesy.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I agree. But militancy isn't going to sway any smoker, and will only cause the majority to get their hackles up. If non-smokers really want smokers to not smoke around them, they should choose other methods than being militant about it.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Smoking is the one downfall of being in Japan. It's all the bloody smokers in bars, restaurants and other public places. I was in Tokyo for a month and no one ever said to me, "Do you mind if I smoke?"

I come from Australia and it is illegal to smoke in all buildings, including bars, restaurants, cafes, hotels, motels and guest houses. It is illegal to smoke at all bus stops and taxi ranks. Smoking in cars is illegal if children are in the car and if you're a smoker some doctors will refuse to treat you. Cigarettes are heavily taxed and a packet will cost you around $40 (3,890¥). Around 15% of the adult Australian population still smokes.

Japan needs to attack the problem of smoking head-on and forcefully. If Japan doesn't, it is going to suffer from a plague of lung cancer in the near future.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

If you don't want my smoking on my balcony to "make your laundry stink of smoke" (bit of an exaggeration), then don't hang your clothes outside. they make my apartment block look like some slum dwelling in a 3rd world country......

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

Japan needs to attack the problem of smoking head-on and forcefully. If Japan doesn't, it is going to suffer from a plague of lung cancer in the near future.

Really? smoking is going down, life expectancy in Japan has always been pretty high. so smoking is demonstrably not making Japanese smokers die younger......

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

they should choose other methods than being militant about it.

Any suggestions? Looking back through this discussion, the most militant comments seem to have come from smokers threatening dire consequences against any non-smoker who dared to challenge their right to light up.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

If the person is smoking where they aren't supposed to: "Excuse me, this is a non-smoking area. Can I please ask you to smoke somewhere else"

If the person is smoking somewhere they are allowed to smoke then nothing needs to be said. The non-smoker should go somewhere else where they won't be bothered by the smoke.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

recent research indicates that e-cigs produce ten times the amount of nicotine that regular cigs. So that is not a solution at all. It may smell better but it is more deadly to be around an e-cig than a normal stinky cig.

Regardless, it does not have the tar, carbon monoxide and other stuff one gets from 2nd hand smoke from burning tobacco. Plus its a VAPOR which dissipates much faster than smoke from a burning cig. I never said it was "safer" for the smoker, just a thousand times less affect those around them. If they want to kill themselves faster with x10 the nicotine then let them have at it.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

In restaurants, smokers rarely smoke while They are eating--because it's gross. But they readily light up while I am eating. Need I point out--that is just as gross. Please don't smoke while I'm eating.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Sorry, Stranger, but if a person is smoking in a non-smoking section, then the right action is to call it to the attention of the wait staff. Every time I've done that it is quickly resolved.

You should not have to be the one to enforce the restaurant's rules.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

After reading this long thread, I stay with fds.

Smoke haters can be zealous, for example in Case 1. I find perfectly justifiable to ask the smoker not to smoke in a balcony, due to the spread of second-hand smoke through the balconies and air vents, but from there to accuse him in the middle of the night with a cigarette butt, is exaggerate. What if it was some other visitor (a person visiting, from another apartment building). Why this guy is a criminal?.

Good for the wife who spread deodorant/sanitizer over the visitor, however, I think it is polite when inviting a friend to tell him/her that you are not allowed to smoke in your house. That way, a Smoker would not have the opportunity to indulge his habit when visiting.

This I don't get: if the number of non-smokers that encourage to ban smoking everywhere is that high, why is that they don't enforce politely the scant laws where it is banned? I mean, why they don't complaint more often?. It seems that they are reluctant to say "no" when a smoker asks, why is that? I don't get it, they vent their frustrations here it seems, as I see even anger and name calling from many posters on this thread from non-smokers.

I said it before, I smoke, I do not impose my habit unto other people, if I feel confident enough, I ask my host/friend if I can smoke, and I don't feel bothered if they say no. Heck, even in my own home when receiving a guest I ask my guest if he/she doesn't mind if i smoke. If that person says he/she doesn't want me to, I don't lit up a cigarette. All I ask in return is that they don't pester me with name-calling and imposing their views trying to convince me to quit.

I would like very much to hear here the comments of people who want pot legalized, and see how contradictory this is.

And yeah, I'm prepared to get lots of thumbs down for my comment, because it seems people can´t be polite with a smoker, with some exceptions of non-smokers here that make sensible comments.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Joe Cocker just died from smoking. I'm sure he wished some of his friends had been more helpful (and more militant) and made him stop smoking. Just sad. Who knows how many people he damaged from second hand smoke as he sucked down zillions of the little white cancer sticks. And people wonder why non-smokers are sometimes polite, but sometimes just sick of it all and get a little pushy.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

why they don't complaint more often?. It seems that they are reluctant to say "no" when a smoker asks, why is that? I don't get it,

Smoking has been a "normal" activity for a long time. It's been portrayed as cool and glamorous by movie stars like Steve McQueen and Humphrey Bogart, musicians like George Harrison, writers like Ayn Rand, and of course the Marlborough Man. On top of that, people are naturally reluctant to get into a conflict with a stranger, especially in Japan. For some people, it's quite an effort to object when a smoker puts the question: "Do you mind if I smoke," especially when they already have the cigarette in their mouth and have clicked their lighter.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It seems that they are reluctant to say "no" when a smoker asks

Smokers don't ask.

Only once has a Japanese man ever asked me, 'Do you mind if I smoke?', and he was a rather obnoxious, lookit me talking to the gaijin lady and being cool type. He became very uncool and flustered when I told him that Yes, I did mind.

I think it is polite when inviting a friend to tell him/her that you are not allowed to smoke in your house. That way, a Smoker would not have the opportunity to indulge his habit when visiting.

That's backwards. When I invite people to my house I do not expect to have to warn them they are not allowed to scribble graffiti on the walls, kick the dog, pour coffee on the carpet, wee in the bath... why should I have to warn them not to pump noxious fumes into my living room? It's polite not to act like a jerk when visiting someone's home.

I smoke, I do not impose my habit unto other people

Unless you smoke in a totally enclosed, airtight bubble, you do impose your habit on others.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

That's the thing though - if one is regularly exposed to second hand smoke it will be bad for them, but the occasional inhalation isn't going to kill anyone. That's what makes the militancy of some anti-smokers so obnoxious.

I have quoted multiple studies in Japan and the USA where non-smokers have traces of nicotine in their blood due to second hand smoke. Fact it smokers, you poison others when you smoke around us. And the pitiful response that smokers have a right to smoke if others are too militant is just too sad. You are the ones causing cancer in others. Your addiction is getting the better of your ability to think.

Really? smoking is going down, life expectancy in Japan has always been pretty high. so smoking is demonstrably not making Japanese smokers die younger......

Example two of nicotine based illogical nonsense. Smoking shortens life by ten years. That is a fact. The number one cause of death in men in Japan is lung cancer. Japanese men would live longer if they did not smoke at all.

I have to ask, does smoking make people stupid in addition to selfish?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Zuc - agree wholeheartedly.

Smokers don't have objectivity - science - on their sides, so they resort to emotionalism and cry it's our right - based on what? - totally ignorant of the fact that their right doesn't include the right to directly infringe upon others rights through arrogantly blowing smoke around.

Only recently lung cancer passed stomach cancer as the #1 cancer killer and it hasn't peaked yet. Heart disease is BIG on the increase - oh but thats only because of western diet, ha, ha naivety ha, ha - and couldn't have anything at all to do with tobacco consumption???

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I purposely ran into a guy who was smoking and walking in front of me. Didn't realize he was holding a cup of coffee, too! Usually though I just tell them to stop, and they say sorry and put it away.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I purposely ran into a guy who was smoking and walking in front of me.

You don't consider purposefully running into someone more obnoxious than the smoking in the first place? You're lucky you didn't get a punch in the face. I don't smoke, but if I was, and some guy purposefully bumped into me to get me to stop, there would be a good chance of me purposefully bumping into his face with my fist.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I am a non-smoker. It is not a just society if you can't visit a pub without breathing smoke. I stop breathing for a few minutes when I see a smoking passerby coming toward me on the sidewalk, and start breathing when he is meters past me. It's a pity that some smokers seem to feel "harassed" when they are told to stop smoking in the presence of a non-smoker when the situation is the other way around.. Things are much better nowadays than back in the 1980s. In those days, if you complained about the smoke in the atmosphere, you were often asked to leave the cafe. So no caricature of smoke haters, please. We have suffered a lot.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

You don't consider purposefully running into someone more obnoxious than the smoking in the first place? You're lucky you didn't get a punch in the face. I don't smoke, but if I was, and some guy purposefully bumped into me to get me to stop, there would be a good chance of me purposefully bumping into his face with my fist.

No, I don't consider it more obnoxious. He gets bumped, looks like an accident, and is over in a second. With him walking and smoking in front of me, I (and everyone else behind him) have to breathe in his smoke the whole time we are walking. The bump is more of a repayment for the fact that I have to run to get past his smoke.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

No, I don't consider it more obnoxious.

It is, for the reason I'll outline below:

He gets bumped, looks like an accident, and is over in a second. With him walking and smoking in front of me, I (and everyone else behind him) have to breathe in his smoke the whole time we are walking. The bump is more of a repayment for the fact that I have to run to get past his smoke.

So you aren't even interested in trying to correct his behavior, or even let him know that the bump was a result of his smoking. You just want to exact physical vengeance on someone for a perceived slight (particularly if he wasn't doing anything he wasn't allowed to do), to make yourself feel better by being a bully.

Damn rights that is obnoxious. Way more obnoxious than smoking in an area that one is allowed to smoke in.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It is however, illegal to walk and smoke in most of the wards in Tokyo - enforced or not.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Smokers smoking right under a no smoking sign is commonplace in Japan. Pathetic addicts that they are they need their fix and do not care about poisoning others around them. They deserve to be bumped into reality in that case. I suggest hosing them down in the non-smoking areas. Someone above suggested urinating on them as that is somewhat equivalent to what they are doing, but it does not cause cancer in others as smoking does.

Smokers need to be penned in like sheep in contained areas where they only contribute to the cancer of fellow smokers.

Best of all would be the near total ban on smoking as with the country of Bhutan.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@therouguuu Good one. But would you do that back in your own country.......? Sounds like this is a job for Charisma Man.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

“All of the people shall be respected as individuals. Their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness shall, to the extent that it does not interfere with the public welfare, be the supreme consideration in legislation and in other governmental affairs.”

The problem with the Constitution and the 1970 Supreme Court Decision is that they don't define any limits on smokers' rights. Their right to smoke should end at the boundaries of their property or at the entrance to the airways of any other human being nearby. How they can contain their pollution I don't know, but then I'm not the one with a bonfire in my mouth. The right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness shouldn't include the freedom to belch a substance more toxic than cyanide into other peoples' faces.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness shall, to the extent that it does not interfere with the public welfare, be the supreme consideration

There is no way belching toxic fumes does not interfere with the public welfare.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I gave up smoking over 40 years ago, for the obvious reasons, but I still love the smell of cigarette smoke.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I smoke because I enjoy smoking. I smoke at home in the kitchen under the vent fan. I smoke in my car and smoking areas. In public I go out of my way to find a place where I can enjoy my cigarette. If it bothers someone then I can't enjoy it. I think I'm considerate of others and I tell non-smokers not to start. With that said if someone comes to my house to complain, it will be a bad day for them. Because I would get my pipe and go back to the door and tell the to get the hell off my property. What I do in my home is noone's concern but my own.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yesterday I went shopping.

Outside the big OI building in town is a big smoking area.

It was pretty busy with loads of people smoking there. To get to the shops, you have to walk through the smokers. Makes no sense.

But that is not the bad thing I saw yesterday. As I was walking through, I saw a young mother, maybe 25 years old, with a very small baby strapped to her front, with one of those forward facing baby carriers that you wear like a rucksack forwards. The babies head was pretty much touching her chin, and was facing towards her.

She was smoking in the smoking area. I could not believe my eyes, and I could not believe that nobody else was appalled and considered it completely normal.

This is NOT a modern country, and that behaviour is widespread and utterly DISGUSTING, both by the perpetrator and by society as a whole who lets this happen without saying anything.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@theInterstat. So what did you say? I hope you gave her a tongue lashing. It' s one thing to smoke around strangers who can move away but a baby strapped to her? Disgusting. I will usually defend smokers because it' s legal. However, I believe cigarettes should be illegal.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@stranger

So you aren't even interested in trying to correct his behavior, or even let him know that the bump was a result of his smoking.

If you read the second part of my original post, you would see that I did find it more rewarding to just tell them to stop. At least because the people I have told so far have actually done so and looked pretty embarrassed in the process.

You just want to exact physical vengeance on someone for a perceived slight (particularly if he wasn't doing anything he wasn't allowed to do), to make yourself feel better by being a bully. Damn rights that is obnoxious. Way more obnoxious than smoking in an area that one is allowed to smoke in.

No, what is obnoxious is making yourself feel better by smoking while walking in front of other people and acting like you don't give a damn. My action was only for my personal satisfaction and could hardly be considered obnoxious by most definitions. A bit weird? yes. Obnoxious? no.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

If you read the second part of my original post, you would see that I did find it more rewarding to just tell them to stop. At least because the people I have told so far have actually done so and looked pretty embarrassed in the process.

But we aren't talking about your interactions with other people, we are talking about your physical assault on an unknowing pedestrian, for no better reason that too feel good about yourself for bullying someone. You have shown through your own words that you were not interested in correcting his behavior, only in assaulting him to feel like you had somehow righted a wrong done to you.

My action was only for my personal satisfaction and could hardly be considered obnoxious by most definitions.

Physical assault is about as obnoxious as it gets.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Olympics are coming, time to clean up your act on this issue Japan, before the world focuses on you too closely.

As far as positive action, my wife and I go out of our way to support non-smoking restaurants where ever possible and make sure to thank them for it.

However this isn't always an option of course.

There are so many issues that come along with smoking not just for the individual but anyone who happens to be around them..

Cancer, I have lost 2 family members to smoking, how is it still legal anywhere I have no idea. It stinks, it ruins meals and clothes. Its money that could be going to healthier food or savings. Its dangerous, often the cause of fires. It is an addictive behaviour, often used to get around other problems like stress and depression rather than dealing with it. and so on and so on..

2 ( +2 / -0 )

how is it still legal anywhere I have no idea. It stinks, it ruins meals and clothes.

It ruins lives.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Physical assault is about as obnoxious as it gets.

Stranger, smoking around others is a physical assault in it of itself. It causes cancer. What do you not understand about that?

Non-smokers do not want lung cancer from you selfish smokers. Protecting clean air is totally understandable to non-addicts. Smokers are inflicting what would be considered criminal harm on others. That is beyond obnoxious.

Your line of reasoning is weak and nonsensical. Really there is no defense of poisoning others.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Stranger, smoking around others is a physical assault in it of itself. It causes cancer. What do you not understand about that?

Spare me the drama. If you're working in a smoky bad day-in-day-out, then yes, second hand smoke could give you cancer. But if you get a whiff of someone's smoke when walking down the road occasionally, it's not going to give you cancer.

Physically assaulting someone even just one time does make one extremely obnoxious however.

Non-smokers do not want lung cancer from you selfish smokers.

I'm not a smoker. And while you're right, I don't want lung cancer from smokers, due to the fact that I don't spend any time with smokers, I have zero worry that the occasional whiff of second hand smoke is going to give me cancer.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

You have people harassing others for Smoking like the person knocking at the door stating this butt belongs to you, When this happens give that person a criminal record, call the police, this is why there is Law enforcement, Remember You as a Smoker have rights a person like this can be sued Sue them. this is the Law, Let them show you a picture, remember this too is a way to get income, they will finally come into play when the shoe is on the other foot,

You as a smoker have rights like everyone else. As far as communities, even in American there must be smoking sections f there is an Apartment building then the Complex must have 1/3 of the units dedicated to smoking units, and if your harassed then the Key here is Suing not only the person harassing you but the establishment,

If some of you that have the money do not stand up for the rest then this is going to get worst, it is time to stand up for your rights, it is time to bring suits against the governments it s time to condemn the People that Pass Gas, it is surly working in America!

Smoker, You have rights too. I Do! And I sue too, I also call the police too, it works and sends a message loud and clear.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

In addition to all the sickness that smokers cause through their pathetic addiction, they're also responsible for the majority of fires. How many people have died horrible deaths because some fool smoker has thrown a lighted butt out of a car window or fallen asleep while smoking in bed?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

But if you get a whiff of someone's smoke when walking down the road occasionally, it's not going to give you cancer.

Stranger, nice that you have been able to pick an MD between postings on JT. But you must have been out on a smoke break when your Professor talked about the immediate impact of second hand smoke. Within seconds, due to the thousands of chemicals in tobacco smoke, 60 of them cancer causing, the lung passages and blood vessels constrict tying to protect the body from being damaged. The CDC states this clearly, there is no safe level of exposure to SHS. Any exposure is harmful.

So wrong again on fact regarding the dangers of tobacco to non-smokers. Try to stop smoking if you can and perhaps you can then understand science.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@Joseph12345

You as a smoker have rights like everyone else.

That's absolutely true. You have a right to do suck whatever you filth you like into your own body, but no right whatsoever to inflict your filthy and harmful fumes on other people. The conflict arises because you smokers fail to respect the rights of decent people to breathe clean air.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I was born in a family who were followers of only and one religion which does not allow smoking!! Sikh !! So obiviously I never smoked!! Smoking or not smoking is someone's choice!! I know many people who smoke, most of them are well behaved ( here i am not taking their side, smoking is not good ) . And I know many hard core anty smokers who behave like a cult ( here i am with them too if they behave rational ) On a lighter note , once I kissed a woman who was a smoker !! Taste was bad !! Cheers friends and Happy New Year !!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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