From January 17th to the 23rd is National Non-Smoking Week in Canada and as the anti-smoking band is already marching on, the tobacco control cartel has been severely criticized in at least two occasions.
As many have predicted it would, the backlash, direct result of the exaggerated and disrespectful campaigns we have been witnessing in Canada ever since they signed and ratified the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, is not only beginning to happen but responsible scientists are now openly denouncing the anti-tobacco tactics as of the last few years.
The first criticism came from a research paper conducted at the University of British Columbia. The study found that the de-normalization and stigma that smokers have been subjected to by anti-tobacco campaigners in the last few years is having a very negative impact on them and making it that much harder for the remaining smokers to quit. Feeling, guilty, discriminated and harassed, they find themselves isolated from the rest of society.
The second one came from a renowned Quebec psychiatrist, Dr. Jean-Jacques Bourque, who has published a book on the unfair treatment of smokers. Dr. Bourque told reporters that he waited until his retirement to write his book because he is now free to speak his mind and he is carrying out the promise he made to himself that one day he will speak up for smokers. In his book not only does he criticize the anti-tobacco mindset and tactics but he also acknowledges the benefits of smoking and the exaggerations of the second hand smoke harm. He accuses Health Canada of fear mongering propaganda and the deliberate obscuring of the benefits of smoking.
As was to be expected, the anti-tobacco activists are fuming. They noisily cried foul and went as far as resorting to their all too usual ploy of accusing these scientists of adopting tobacco industry tactics. ‘’We have nothing against smokers’’ they defensively claimed, ‘’only the product’’ but as the article from the Gazette on the UBC study states: ‘’ her (the researcher’s) interest was piqued by what she sees as the contrast between how smokers are treated, and the non-judgmental, "harm-reduction" approach now widely applied by public health to people with other addictions.