Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Letter of the Day

When the smoke settles

  • Print

A great kudo to the smokers of Quebec who persevered to bring their class-action lawsuit against three tobacco companies. The misery, illness and financial impact of the use of tobacco will not be lessened by any financial settlement that may arise from this lawsuit. The tobacco companies' reply to this action is: "If the tobacco was such a poison, why did the government allow it?"

On that point most people would agree the government should also have been included along with the tobacco companies in the lawsuit. Most governments, eager for the tax revenue, have chosen to take a blind-eye approach to the sale of tobacco and have let their citizens suffer the consequences. Many people will await the judgment of this lawsuit so that, perhaps, they, too, can take a swing at the tobacco manufacturers.

 

LOU SPAKOWSKI

Winnipeg

 

ñü

This morning, as I headed off to the bus stop, it was easy to feel that spring had arrived. There was a warmth and a freshness and a promise that seemed out of sync with the time of year, but I wasn't complaining. At some point, though, I realized I was breathing cigarette fumes. In the distance, up ahead, I watched as smoked billowed from a young lady who was walking ahead of me. For several minutes I followed her at a distance of several hundred feet, unable to enjoy the awful stink she left in her trail.

When it comes to the impending court battle, I pray the courts have at least half as much legal sense as the cigarette companies have had in the past. But this may be expecting too much, so I'll offer a suggestion: When the court case finally ends, and the lawyers on both sides have padded their pockets, I suggest all the financial awards go straight to the provincial treasury, to the departments of health.

The cigarette companies have lied or prevaricated about the known dangers to the health of their consumers for decades, and should absolutely pay a stiff fine. And the tobacco lepers that I see hanging around the back doors of malls and businesses have known for decades (that is, since before they began smoking) that this habit was addictive and dangerous. More than 50 years ago, 16mm films were shown in the classroom comparing healthy pink lungs with bags of black tar that looked suitable for filling potholes. The results of the smokers' failures to exercise common sense in the past will now be remedied by having their hospital bills paid as they lie on hospital beds.

It would be utter nonsense to provide cash awards to smokers who may or may not be suffering (yet), and then ask the public to pay for their care as they cough their lungs out.

 

Eric Unger

Winnipeg

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition March 15, 2012 A11

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

7 questions with Craig Kielburger before We Day Manitoba

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • Marc Gallant/Winnipeg Free Press. Gardening Column- Assiniboine Park English Garden. July 19, 2002.
  • MIKE.DEAL@FREEPRESS.MB.CA 100615 - Tuesday, June 15th, 2010 The Mane Attraction - Lions are back at the Assiniboine Park Zoo. Xerxes a 3-year-old male African Lion rests in the shade of a tree in his new enclosure at the old Giant Panda building.  MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Are you in favour of the Harper government's new 'family tax cut'?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google