Smokers 8/26/2005

Editor MNH:  8/26/05

Beware of using collective nouns. You might be accused of profiling and profiling is politically incorrect. But since I have squandered my reputation in regard to  political correctness some time ago I live rather unencumbered by feelings of what people might think. Therefore I profile and call the smokers slobs and the dog owners good citizens. Driving down Fifth Street I  see them walking their pooches with leash in one hand and a plastic bag in the other in order to pick up the doggy packets. The smokers however feel free to toss their cigarette butts wherever they are. Not only that. More than once I have come upon a heap of cigarette butts  in the parking lot where a smoker had emptied the ash tray of his car. The M&I bank has an ash tray at the entrance. But on the ground right next to it was a cigarette butt. I assume the smoker  flicked it simply by force of habit. A relative, a chain smoker, dying of emphysema in his oxygen tent continually  put his hand to mouth as if smoking. Force of habit!

In one regard I sympathize with the smokers. Buildings are smoke free and a smoker coming in from the street has to get rid of his cigarette. Unfortunately not enough building have an ash tray like the M&I bank. In the army the recruits are taught to strip the embers of the cigarette before it is pocketed.  

There have been a number of bandwagons rolling through town for various causes. Why not start one to cajole, educate and coerce  the smokers to break the habit: smoke and toss. It has to be a concentrated effort by the media, the schools, the police department, and our city government  to turn our smokers from slobs into responsible citizens.