Parents Who Smoke Around Kids Are No Better Than Child Abusers

Rant 257

cigaretteIf you're parked in the school parking lot with the windows closed, a kid in the backseat, and you're just a puff, puff, puffing away on your cigarette, expect a gentle knock on the window and not-nearly-as-gentle warning to knock it off. That's right. I have no problem telling a mom with a cancer stick in hand that she's being an abusive parent.

So what do I have a problem with? The latest news that as much as 22 percent of kids are still being held hostage by smokers who decide to light up inside a vehicle. What's next? Kicking puppies? Clubbing seals? Are people really this stupid? I'm starting to think we need an actual law that forbids people from smoking around children.

Oh, I know, the smokers are going to come out and start whining at me about how their rights are being infringed on, and how we're not nearly as mean in this society to the drunks. Blah, blah, blah. Let me stop y'all right there, folks. Drunks are perfectly free to ruin their own livers, but we do, in fact, legislate that they not get into a car while tipsy in order to protect the rights of other motorists.

And so it should be with smokers. They are perfectly free to ruin their own lungs in the privacy of their own homes, but we should be perfectly free to legislate that kids' have the right to grow up free of the secondhand smoke that causes asthma, ear infections, SIDS, and eventually ... the big C.

Just think, if you took an infected needle and plunged it in your kid's arm, giving them some sort of disease, you'd probably be brought up on charges of child abuse, wouldn't you? And yet these smokers get away scot free. Now, I'm not the type of parent who throws the words "child abuse" around every time a parent does something I disagree with. But it's the new millennium, people!

If there is an American parent in this day and age who doesn't know cigarettes kill people, I don't even want to imagine what else they don't know (where babies come from maybe?). And if you know what cigarettes do, and you're still subjecting your kid to it -- either by smoking around them or letting them hop in an enclosed vehicle with another idiot smoker -- are you really any better than the creep with the infected needle? Not in my book

As it stands right now, parents have to know that secondhand smoke is hurting their kids. But so many of them are subjecting them to it anyway.

If common sense won't stop them, can a law save these poor kids?


Image via stevendepolo/Flickr

kid health


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mojoe... mojoe12776

Can I get an "Amen" sister?!?!?  I think what a lot of people are missing is that, yes, there are different levels to child abuse.  Some unfortunately way worse then others.  But I agree, people should not smoke around their children.  I agree you have the right to smoke and I actually think its unfair that they tax the sh*t out of smokers, so long as, you don't smoke around anyone who does not smoke.  I hate when I exit a business establishment and all the smokers congregate outside, right in front of the door.  Thank you for going outside, but please step away so I do not have to walk through your cancer cloud.


nonmember avatar Janet

MeggieK44: It's not simply smoking. Smoking around your child makes you a bad parent. You know it causes harm to your child. You do it anyway. That's beyond a bad habit. NO HABIT SHOULD BE PLACED BEFORE A CHILD's HEALTH. Only an unfit parent could dream to argue otherwise. End of story.

nonmember avatar joelsmom

In Ontario, Canada it is against the law to smoke in a car with anyone under the age of 16. If your caught with a child in your car while smoking, its a huge fine. Dont think of it as abuse tho.

nonmember avatar Heather

I totally agree! & I'm not sorry if this offends anyone. As a child my father smoked and he wasn't allowed to even come near the house but he could smoke in the car and it really sucked being kids in the backseat as ashes, cherries & smoke splattered my brother & I in the face we begged for him not to do it and he still did worse thing for a kid to have a selfish parent choose cigarettes over your well being, Now my father & his Girlfriend have spent over 10 years chain smoking in his house while her son had to sit in this atmosphere he has asthma and is prescribed Clarinex, they still haven't changed their ways. I definitely consider it a form of child neglect especially when we bring our toddler over to visit and all he does is sneeze and cry the whole time!

Jloum... Jloumama28

Wow deadbeat, unfit for motherhood, physical abuse is easier to get over? Seriously judging all parents who smoke like this? If you really care enough volunteer yourself for a nicotine hotline to help support ppl to quit!!! Any parents I know who smoke these days do not smoke in the house or car. My mom smoked and guess what I would take the smoke over any other abuse and she was an excellent mom. All of the smokers I know are not proud of their habit and regret it. This is a real medical issue not one of morals or values. Im sick of this drama- i thought this website is for moms to connect not to read all these judgmental ugly opinions of just as a much judgmental poorly written article. I may just leave cafe mom its a whole lot of negative!

Jakes... Jakesmommie

I don't like smoke but I can tell you this, your view on this is jacked up. To put smokers in the same class as abusers and saying drunks are better shows what a nut you are. Remind me to never schedule a play date with you....

nonmember avatar Katharine

If you spent half as much time loving and/or trying to help smokers in a productive way as you do judging them you would get a lot more accomplished. Worry about yourself and pray for others

Lauri... Lauriemom

I agree it is disgusting. It's pure selfishness to do this.

katyq katyq

I don't know why people on here keep saying things like "this undermines the REAL child abuse in this country" so? You are making your children sick and poisening their bodies, how is that not abusive? There are many kinds of abuse out there and I would definately call harming your childs health ABUSE. I think there should be a law that states that you get a hefty fine if you are caught smoking in a car with a child under 18 in it. Only an idiot or fool who cares far more about himself than his child would do this. I can't stand parents who smoke around their kids, give their kids "sips" of alcohol, "smack" their kids on the back of the head, cuss out their kids, feed their obese kids mcdonalds every other day etc. And I have no problem saying it, it's all abuse.

lstuglin lstuglin

Omg I am laughing so hard , because back in the day when my children were little, we all smoked drank partied, and now we have these new age adult children that seem to have this intitlement disease lol, I as a smoking grandma never ever smoke near or in a car or my own home when my grandchildren are with me, but if you knock on someone's window be prepared to be knocked out cold,

Illegal child abuse jail time , there are enough children living under roofs of parents that physically , mentally abuse them every day, why don't you visit a foster care facility during Christmas , then smoking won't look so bad, these kids are taken from there parents for valid reasons, it's a very sad and happy to see there faces when you bring the gifts in.

A Loving Grandma

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