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Thursday, 21 July 2011

More media coverage, and a question to consider.

More media coverage
Have a read of the story in today's Herald Sun newspaper about the campaign.

I was also interviewed this morning on Melbourne talkback radio by Steve Price and Dermott Brereton - I'll link to the podcast once it's available.  Both interviewers were interested and supportive, even commenting that "I make a good point".

It's been delightful to get such positive feedback and support in response to the media coverage. I am continually worried that people won't be able to see past the 'apparent political incorrectness' of the issue and appreciate the very serious implications which lie beneath. It appears I underestimated people's compassion and common sense! What a lovely discovery.

Yes, it's The Alfred Hospital.
To this point I had been avoiding naming the hospital that I am taking to court. But since it's all over the news now, I guess it's ok to say that yes, it's the Alfred Hospital that I am challenging. And increasingly, they are standing alone as other hospitals lift these senseless bans.

My question for today...
Just what IS the motivation behind this policy at The Alfred? It can't really be getting people to quit, because that's not happening. It can't really be protecting non-smokers, because that's easily managed with small smoking shelters. So ... what is their reason? 

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
- Martin Luther King Jr


  1. There is no place for smoking in a hospital. You do not have a right to smoke. Smoking is a freedom granted to you by our community via laws that allow the sale of tobacco products. That freedom is curtailed where appropriate as seen in laws banning smoking in eating places and inside buildings or areas with a roof. Claiming a right to smoke dilutes the value of the real rights we have. If smoking was a right, our government would be required to provide tobacco products for free or very cheap to ensure that you could exercise that right. That is something that is nonsensical given our damaging smoking is the the smoker and the community.

  2. Michael...
    Are you for real ?
    Are you an automated robot ?

    Did you apply for permission from your beloved Government before you posted your comment ?

    You are very sad.

  3. Wow - how thoroughly intolerant Michel. I'm always amazed at how nasty people like you can be. Utterly foul specimens that are allegedly human. Crikey - you should have been in politics in Germany in the 1930s you would have gone far. If that is the case about tobacco then it's true of every legal product on sale including beer and chocolate.
    The only problem with smoking is that it brings creeps like you who think you somehow have a God given right to control what people do out of the woodwork.

    I feel so sorry for smokers in Australia and wonder how the hell it became so fascist. Ahh but then we are talking about the same country that felt it had the right to steal Aborginee babies to make them somehow white and clean. You just shifted your bigotry to a new minority group. Foul, foul people.

    Your rights to this mythical clean air (which doesn't exist anyway) ends where a smokers right to free association with his or her own kind starts in a free democracy . Butt Out weirdo, get a life and leave the vulnerable alone!

  4. I find the comment posted by Michael shows what an unempathic, intolerant bunch these people are.

    We are talking of people with severe mental issues here, who may be using smoking as the final sliver of routine, control and pleasure in a situation in which they may, subjectively, be very close to Hell. Self-medication with tobacco is widespread amongst those with mental health issues and many studies have highlighted the beneficial effects of tobacco on mental health, especially schizophrenia, psychosis and the like (not very PC admittedly, but they are out there).

    To remove this from people in such a state when they have been admitted to such places against their will; they have committed no crime; they cannot choose to leave; the ward or room is their (enforced) home and they are supposed to be in a caring environment that is dedicated to their well being is frankly disgusting. True, other patients also have rights so there may well be a case for smoking and non-smoking wards/rooms. But to deny people in such a vulnerable state that basic element of control, to remove from them the one thing that may be providing even the tiniest shred of comfort is nothing less than sadism. A strong word but entirely apt, here.

    I can only hope that Micheal has nothing to do with the health care system. If he does, then I feel for everyone who has to submit to his tender mercies.

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