#TALKSMOKING

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I get pertubbed whenever I see a person smoking. Most people use cheap cigarettes that fill up their lungs with the deadly Nicotine and tar. However, the sight of a lady smoking is a complete turn off to me. Women are supposed to always smell cherry great and have petite, juicy lips. Kissing dead lips and a pungent-smelling mouth is so appaling. Naturally, women are synonmous with stratospheric hygiene levels.

I’ve never been for men smoking, but ladies… Who said that women smoking is a sign of emancipation from the shackles of male chauvinism and feminism. Did the likes of Sonia Gandhi, Hillary Clinton, Margaret Thatcher, Angela Merkel, Dilma Roussef, Christina Fernandez, Gloria Arroyo, Wangari Maathai, Mekatilili wa Menza, Anne Tibaijuka, Dlamini-Zuma, Elen Johnson-Sirleaf et al didn’t do smoking to prove to the world that ladies are ‘equal to and or even better’ than men. They didn’t need affirmative action.

Smoking amongst women was popularised by Edward Bernays, who was a sharp PR mind. He was shrewd and unscrupulous increasing the market base and profitability of the likes of Marlboro and other cigarette-manufacturers. He exploited the women’s need for the so-called anticipation.

The health ramifications of smoking to women are fatal. It leads to break down of elastin, the protein fibre in skin that lends firmness and elasticity to boobs, leaving them drooping and unattractive. It also damages the skin and face depriving it of oxygen and nutrients. It badly affects gums, complicates women’s menstrual and menopausal cycles and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) leading to increased foetal mortality (miscarriage). All these besides Lung cancer and other hundreds of maladies and side effects.

So before you puff that stick of cigar, my beautiful Queen, don’t take smoking for equality. Life is too sweet to lose you.

CHAD BIRONGA is a Counsellor with I CHOOSE LIFE, (ICL) AFRICA and the ICT Director at Life Transformers, UoN. An Economics & Statistics student at the University of Nairobi, I write on issues polity, economy and social life.

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