Saturday, July 11, 2009

Are You Kidding Me?????

As a reformed smoker, I fully understand the 'psyche' of a smoker.

As the wife of a no-longer-enlisted-Sailor, I understand a little bit regarding the military lifestyle.

As the mom of two Airman, I respect the responsibility of serving our nation.

As the virtuamom of a soldier currently residing in Afghanistan, I acknowledge the stresses of waiting patiently for the next rocket to arrive at camp.


I fully get the whole idea of a 'smoke-free' world. However, the Military World is different. Perhaps, I am mistaken...but I do not foresee the Military World becoming a Smoke-Free Zone any time soon. Perhaps the day a soldier is no longer waiting for a bullet, that may be the day they will 'kick the habit'. For crying out loud, they are not permitted a cold beer...now let's take away a well deserved guilty pleasure.

C'mon, Defense Department...let these guys have a smoke!



Report Urges Timeline for Tobacco-free Military
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, July 10, 2009 – The military has come a long way from the time when it packaged cigarettes in with rations, but more must be done, according to an Institute of Medicine report.

The report, titled “Combating Tobacco in Military and Veteran Populations,” calls for the Defense Department to set a timeline to eliminate smoking on military installations.

Officials from the Pentagon and Department of Veterans Affairs asked the institute to prepare the report in 2007. It was released June 28.

More than 30 percent of active-duty military members use tobacco products of some kind. “Of greater concern, the rate of tobacco use in the military has increased since 1998, threatening to reverse the steady decline of the last several decades,” the report says. “Furthermore, smoking rates among military personnel returning from Iraq and Afghanistan may be 50 percent higher than rates among nondeployed military personnel.”

The Defense Department and the services have worked hard to become tobacco-free. The services have banned use of tobacco products during basic training, the report said, and they have launched extensive public-education campaigns and commander training. “The committee recommends that [the Defense Department] establish a timeline to eliminate all tobacco use on military installations to protect the health of all military personnel, civilian employees, family members and visitors,” the report says.

The committee --– chaired by Stuart Bondurant, a professor of medicine and dean emeritus at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill --– found that “achieving a tobacco-free military begins by closing the pipeline of new tobacco users entering the military and by promoting cessation programs to ensure abstinence.”

The committee recommends using a phased approach. The military academies and officer training programs should become tobacco-free first, followed by new enlisted recruits and finally all other active-duty personnel, the report says.

The Defense Department fully supports the goal of a tobacco-free military, said Pentagon spokeswoman Cynthia Smith, and officials believe it’s achievable through development and execution of a comprehensive plan as recommended by the report. “However,” she added, “achieving that goal will in part depend on coincident reductions of tobacco use in the civilian population.”

The department has been at the forefront of tobacco-cessation efforts. Officials recently launched the “Quit Tobacco - Make Everyone Proud” campaign at http://www.ucanquit2.org. It targets young enlisted men and women who use tobacco. The Web site provides information, resources, interactive tools and practical help. Service members who want to quit tobacco can get immediate help from a trained tobacco-cessation coach from 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. EST every day.

The report also recommends that the Defense Department to stop selling tobacco products in military commissaries and exchanges, to prohibit tobacco use anywhere on military installations, and to treat tobacco use in the same way as other health-related behaviors, such as alcohol abuse and poor physical fitness.

23 comments:

Average American said...

Real smart! Take another freedom away from those that risk their lives to defend freedom, damned arrogant assholes! Besides, the one GOOD thing about tobacco is it's stress reducing quality, and that is a scientific fact. I don't think I would have made it through my tour without it.

MightyMom said...

“achieving a tobacco-free military begins by closing the pipeline of new tobacco users entering the military "


um so now you can't join the military if you smoke?? THAT'LL help with our enlistment rates....and ENSURE the need for a draft next time war breaks out...not to mention stop loss will never dissappear.......


seeing as how military personnel live on bases all over the world I want to say 2 things. a) the rest of the world SMOKES.. b) saying a military member can't smoke on base is saying they can't smoke at home. Now I've never smoked and am allergic to the smoke so that most anti-smoking recommentdations I'm all for...but I'm not ever going to go into your home and say you can't smoke there. that's just too much.

what a mess our country is in.

AirmanMom said...

avg american...I truly did not think I was off base, responding to this announcement! Thanks for stopping by!

AirmanMom said...

mighty mom...you bring up very valid points! I am by no means encouraging those who smoke, but let's keep it real...smoking in the military is and 'is'. Leave it be!

Mud Puppy said...

Please excuse the language...

But F#$% Yeah!

Later,

Mud Puppy

Mary Ellen said...

I'm all for encouraging people to quit smoking, helping them to quit, etc., but if somebody who's putting their life on the line - literally - to protect this country, they ought to be able to light one up if they want to. I mean, for heaven's sake.

Becky said...

Until the federal government makes a law saying that the average, day to day American can't smoke, there should be no difference for military members. Obviously it's a nice goal - we all want our service members to be healthy, BUT - give me a break. Ridiculous. As Avg. American said above - it's stress relief for a lot of these guys. My husband quit a few years ago after smoking over a pack a day for ten years but he wouldn't want to see his guys put in a spot where they can't function at top capacity. Can you imagine a whole battalion/company/platoon/whatever going through nicotine withdrawal at the same time? Sounds like something I wouldn't want to witness!

christian soldier said...

This is a 'trial balloon' - a 'test' to see if any one will fight against it...
The freedom takers start small-and stick w/ their plan...
In CA-there is an entire city (wealthy) that does not 'allow' smoking anywhere except 'inside' ones home ...so far...and that is being challenged....
Freedom takers never stop--that why we must be ever alert...
C-CS

HeartBass said...

I'm the mother of a 25-year-old son who has been smoking for 10 years. Both of my parents were heavy smokers and they both died in their 50's as a result. I am strongly against smoking and am glad that it's no longer allowed in public buildings and restaurants in so many places. BUT, even I think the idea of stopping our servicemen and servicewomen from smoking is ludicrous!! My God, they are putting themselves in the line of fire every single day for our freedom and one of those freedoms is the right to choose whether or not to smoke! Sure, I wish they would choose not to so they are healthier people, but don't take away their FREEDOM to make that choice!!

coffeypot said...

What better way to make stone cold killers than by taking their cigarettes away from them. Of course one cannot guarantee who will be shot, stabbed or slapped down. As a 20 year reformed smoker I know how hard it is to quit smoking. I did it cold turkey, but, as you said, waiting for the next bullet or RPG to come by, not smoking seems a little too much stress on an already stressful situation. I can see forbidding smoking in a closed room for the sake of the non-smokers, but that’s why God made doors to the outside.

Of course those ideas come from desk jockies who have NEVER been in combat (and probably never been in another country.) Officers @@%#!!&.

Hammer said...

It's been proven that nicotine helps with alertness mental acuity and gives a sense of well being.

My dad told me that when he was in Vietnam he would light up just to mask the stench of the Jungle and also the smell would remind him of home.

Who are they to deny our soilders this pleasure?

Donna said...

I saw that proposal on the TV and actually shouted back at the screen! How STUPID! If our service men and women are putting themselves out there on the line, defending our freedoms, by all means let them have their cigarettes! Geez Louise! It is a LEGAL product and these are our soldiers! Do NOT deny them one of the few things that they have for enjoyment!

Donna said...

P.S. And I no longer smoke. I used to smoke 3 packs a day and quit about 30 years ago. But I would never, ever want to deny our servicemen and women the right to smoke, just like other U.S. citizens.

AirmanMom said...

mud puppy...thanks!

AirmanMom said...

me...totally agree with your words! Thank you!

AirmanMom said...

becky...I'm with you, would not want to be in the same room with a bunch of soldiers quitting! I remember when I quit, my oldest was 11 years old and almost put me up for adoption!

AirmanMom said...

c-cs...our voices must be heard!
Thanks for stopping by!

AirmanMom said...

heart bass...it is a horrible to watch a loved one die of this disease and yes, it would be a beautiful world if we all quit smoking, but let's be real... as you stated, those who fight for our freedoms should never have any of their freedoms taken from them!

AirmanMom said...

coffeypot...if you get a chance, tell me how you feel ;)
Thank you for stopping by!!!!

AirmanMom said...

hammer... you mentioned two things our soldiers deserve; a little less stress and a reminder of home!
Thank you!

AirmanMom said...

donna...if I had heard of this on tv, I'd be screaming at my tv as well. Our soldiers already sacrifice so much, why should they be asked to give up anything else?

proudsoldiermom said...

We have troops doing 4-5 tours. Suicide rates are up. Stress is high. This idea is ridiculous!
And , as my husband says , they'll enact it and years down the road when they being treated in VA's they'll deny help for smoke related illness since they were told not to smoke.

AirmanMom said...

soldiermom...I thank you for stopping by and sadly, must agree with your husband's viewpoint. I read that 88 active duty soldiers have committed suicide so far this year, why are we not more alamed by these numbers? So sad!