“Fire Safe” Cigarettes

As news reporters, we are asked to keep our biases to ourselves .. and I think I do a fairly good job of that on the air with most of the critical issues of the day ( politics, etc ). However, I do have one bias I’m not afraid to admit: I hate smoking.

This, of course, is a problem when you are married to a smoker but it’s the whole habit that drives me crazy. I hate the smell, the taste and the after effects of smoking. Let’s be honest: smoking is not good for you and will take years off your life. I don’t care what the tobacco companies say or what stats they try to throw my way. In addition, it’s just disgusting.

That being said, imagine my suprise this morning when Ashley DiParlo reported the story about “fire safe” cigarettes!

In case you have never heard of “fire safe” cigarettes, and prior to this morning I had not, the premise is a cigarette that is supposed to go out after a brief period of inactivity. The paper of the cigarette allows it to put itself out. Why would anyone make a cigarette like that? It’s designed to prevent those who smoke in bed ( why anyone does is an absolute mystery to me ) to keep from burning the house down when they fall asleep. Such “accidents” are among the leading cause of house fires.

While I congratulate the state and the cigarette makers for coming up with a cigarette which won’t kill everyone in the house immediately, it will still kill you and everyone else over time. Sure, you don’t burn up in a fire, but lung cancer can’t be a better way to perish.

I guess cigarettes will always be with us and anything that can make them “safer” should be welcomed, but the technology only takes away the imminent danger. The long-term threat is still there and you’ve just given smokers a license  sit in bed and kill themselves one cigarette at the time.

Hardly a “safer” cigarette.

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