Children as young as 5-years-old encouraged to smoke cigarettes in annual Portuguese celebration


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/01/08/children-as-young-as-5-years-o.html


#2

Europeans are weird.


#3

Tobacco industry wet dream.


#4

I think I’ll stick to cheese rolling


#5

So once more things boil down to: Humans do stupid things for no real reason if “religion:” or “celebrities” “we have always done this” tell them to.

Or did Gwynetth Paltrow make a typo and meant women should get their Volvo steam cleaned?


#6

Meh, a couple of pretend puffs? Not really going to matter. Poorer countries have real 5 year old smoking for real.

Next moral outrage is the fact they let kids drink some wine or something.

ETA - what could make smoking less cool than making it something lame your parents force you to do at the holidays. :wink:


#7

When I was 10 or so, I successfully badgered my mum into letting me have a puff of her cigarette.

It put me off trying again for a very long time.


#8

Where is the video of the Portuguese kids inhaling for the first time then coughing furiously, vomiting, and falling over? That’s pretty much what happened to me the first time I inhaled a cigarette.


#9

Wine momentarily excites a few brain receptors that settle back down after the metabolites leave the body. You have to drink a ton of it to permanently rewire the brain, more than you have to consume sugar or caffeine to do the same. And it has some mild health benefits in small quantities. Cigarettes made by big tobacco are loaded up with gratuitous chemicals that make a bee-line for rewiring the brain to an addiction akin in its hold over addicts to opioids, with myriad side effects the most notable of which is a vastly elevated risk of lung, throat and mouth cancer. In summary, while I’m not going to panic about it, encouraging kids to smoke cigarettes is about as smart as giving them morphine, and substantially more harmful than giving them a bit of wine at dinner or a sugary soda.


#10

When I was a kid growing up in Appalachia, the yearly craft fair would host a tobacco spitting contest – sponsored by Beachcraft, IIRC – for the kids of the town (although I don’t think anyone younger than middle-school participated).

The prize was a bronze spittoon.

Everyone’s weird!


#11

I’m not saying they aren’t addictive, but we are talking about one time use once a year. That is neither going to cause addiction nor health issues.


#12

I know and you’re correct. I was merely questing the equivalence with cultures where wine is served with dinner for teens. One cigarette isn’t going to do great harm by itself. But cultural promotion of cigarettes is, IMHO, far worse than wine.


#13

Don’t panic. It’s mostly harmless.


#14

True, but the Portuguese thing makes one wonder if it doesn’t do more to turn kids off smoking than to encourage them to continue on their own time. There’s another anthropology paper …


#15

One of my favorite stories come from a 95-year old friend, who happens to be named Brand Livingstone. He recalls sitting on the knee of his grandfather, who had participated in the Civil War. His grandfather would always be smoking a cigar, and as a curious 3-year old, Brand begged to try it. When he was given the cigar, he did what his grandfather did - inhaled deeply. “I took it all the way to my toes!” I remember him saying as he told the story. Naturally he started choking immediately and his mother was not impressed, but he survived.


#16

Yeah, we as kids were offered wine for Christmas and Easter dinner. Fortunately, this was the 70’s and the wines were sufficiently dank to put me off alcohol through my teens.


#17

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