Monday, March 18, 2013

Kissing an ashtray

Kissing an ashtray
“Smoke and drink to curse your child for life.”
A worldly wise man once said to me, “I don’t kiss women who smoke. I don’t like kissing ashtrays.” It was a hard hitting comment, and I can safely say, it applies the other way too. But more than the impact of this simple statement, “I don’t like kissing ashtrays,” smoking, and might I also include drinking alcohol, are both harmful not just for the person using these personal enemies against themselves, but also for their children and grand children.
Studies have shown that inhaling cigarette smoke can cause genetic mutations that can lead to cancers, and children are especially vulnerable to the effects of smoking. It is also a well established medical fact that women who smoke and drink during pregnancies have very high chance of giving birth to kids with birth-defects. Now may I ask, “What kind of a man or a woman would curse their own child to live a life full of suffering just because the parents were worse than kids?” Perhaps everybody does not deserve kids!
It is also a well known fact in medical science that smoking causes mutations in the person who smokes cigarettes. Now I would like to extend that study, without the requisite support of research though, and make a statement: “If smoking can cause mutations in human body, then it can very well cause mutation in germ cells found in gonads (Ovaries and testicles) that produce ova and sperms (female and male gametes in humans). And if this is true, then such mutations can be inherited by posterity, and can develop into defects, be it birth defects like hole in heart or cleft lip etc, or be it later life diseases like Alzheimer etc.”
Such defects may appear in the smoker’s immediate kids, or even in grand-kids, depending upon whether the individual inherited a dominant allele for a fit body from the other parent, or a recessive allele that will be overshadowed in effect by the mutated allele. Perhaps that is why there are more instances of genetic disorders like lactose intolerance etc among kids in western cultures where even women have been heavy drinkers and smokers since a long time ago. Compared to it, in eastern cultures, including Indian and other Asian nations, women generally don’t smoke or drink, and smoking and drinking by men is considered a social evil too. Hence one if more likely to find kids suffering from pathogenic diseases like polio in these nations, due to poor hygiene, than genetic defects.
If such a study is not available then perhaps it has not been conducted, or the strong tobacco lobby has nipped such studies in bud. But the question is not about what anyone else has done. Question is, “What you can do?” I can write and talk, and that’s exactly what I am doing. You can quit!
So what would you like your child to grow up to be?
Fatal Urge Carefree Kiss “Amanpreet Singh Rai”