As a former smoker, I am now very much against the idea that smokers have a right to pollute the air of others in enclosed spaces. That said, I don’t mind sitting outside a pub and breathing in the occasional whiff of tobacco smoke.
Anti smoking posters range from the informative to the threatening. Being told that cancer kills, and that smoking is linked with various cancers and heart conditions may seem obvious to most people these days. But people who have smoked for decades need cajoling not beating over the head.
I know someone who has had heart bypass surgery, gave up cigarettes for years prior to the surgery, but is now back on the fags. This person persists in smoking even though he has developed a chronic lung condition.
He might argue that as a man in his seventies he can do what he damn well pleases. But knowingly causing yourself harm is not a right that finds a lot of public support. Some might even argue that under those circumstances further medical treatment for his lungs should be restricted. I don’t hold that opinion, and favour a more supportive attitude towards those who need help battling an addiction, whether it be nicotine, drugs or alcohol.