Would virtually everyone be a smoker?
Not at today's prices (taxes included).
Why would they ? It stinks, it's expensive, it's addictive, it's dirty, it can set things on fire... You would have to be more specific as to what you mean in "if it was not bad". If smoking would not cause hazardous depositions in your mouth and breathing system, if it would smell good, if it were free, if it were not addictive, if it were clean and safe, if we had only good reasons to do it, yes sure, maybe people would smoke as they drink water and breath. Except it would be so different from what we know of smoking in reality today !
Back before we knew cigarettes were bad for one's health, there were many more smokers. Heck, when I was a kid, just about every adult I knew smoked. It was considered to be sauve and debonair.
Did people seriously not think that it would be bad for their health back then? Maybe I'm just seeing 20/20 in hindsight, but did people really need studies to show that inhaling smoke is bad for you?
Seems like common sense to me.
And no, even if there were no health risks, I would not smoke, and neither would a lot of people. It's expensive, and I've never heard anybody describe any benefits other than "looking cool."
I think many people realized that it couldn't be good for you, but most did not realize just how detrimental to one's health it can be.
As late as the 1990's, I believe, the tobacco company owners sat in front of Congress and flatly denied that tobacco causes cancer. And they had the test results to prove it! This may be one of the greatest frauds ever perpetrated on the public. What's more, by making their product more appealing [by increasing the nicotine levels], the tobacco companies were, intentionally or inadvertantly, designing cigarettes to be as addictive as possible.
Seems like common sense that the moon orbits the earth, as well, but there was a time when this was not so.
No; I wouldn't smoke. It would still make my clothes, car, house, hair, etc. smell awful.
They actually didn't know anywhere close to how bad cigarettes are for you 30 years ago.
Cigarettes are cough suppressants (in the short-term; obviously not in the long-term) so people actually thought they were healthy "back in the day" IIRC. I think they were even prescribed by doctors for coughs.
My father knew that cigarettes were bad for him, but he had picked up the habit at a young age, kept smoking through WWII in Europe and when he returned home. When I was 10, he got a cold that turned into a nasty case of bronchitis and he was pretty much bed-ridden for a couple of weeks. He used to store his cigs in the freezer, and I remember him telling my mother that when a friend of his stopped by to drop off some western novels, she should give him all his cigarettes.
Like a fool, I took up smoking in college - coffee and tobacco were staples for long study-sessions in engineering school. Then I got bronchitis and mono back-to-back and lost a LOT of class-time. I still ended up with good grades in quantitative analysis, physics, etc, but it took a lot of catch-up to accomplish that. Duh! The first time that I was well enough to get back to the dining hall for a meal, I finished it off with a coffee and bummed a cigarette from a girl-friend, and almost immediately was so nauseous that she and one of her friends had to help me back to my room. That was my last cigarette - 40 years ago.
Finally, something that will force people to consider me as such.
To be consistent with how non-sensical people usually are, I'd expect smoking to decrease if it was suddenly not bad for you.
... my conscience would be perfectly clean.
I hate the smell of cigarettes... and it stains EVERRRYTHINNNG.... So no I would not smoke cigarettes ever... and if a girl were going to want to be with me their *** better not smoke either cause I think that a female smoking is the most unattractive thing in the world. Regardless of how attractive you think you are as soon as you put that cigarette to your lips GOOD BYE.
Considering people as far back as the late 1700s called cigarettes "coffin nails" i'm pretty sure people knew it was bad for you.
Considering that cigarettes weren't invented until the 19th century, your "coffin nail" claim is not believable.
Well, isn't that peculiar.
No what they were smoking was first CALLED a cigarette in 19th century. Before that... they were called other things (coffin nails apparently one of them :rofl:)
That is a terrible reference site, but I think a careful reading of the answer says that the expression "nail in the coffin" goes that far back, not that it applied to cigarettes.
This is the original quote
What I get from that is, if you are going to smoke, be happy"?
What did he mean by "care to our coffin"? It strikes me that there may be a bit of irony here [I love irony]. Was he talking about worrying about life's problems too much; things like the health hazards of smoking?
Cigarettes were invented in the 1830's by an Egyptian artillery unit that were rewarded with tobacco after they improved their accuracy by wrapping their charges in paper. Their pipe(s) was broken, so they wrapped the tobacco in paper and smoked it that way.
I heard this from my history professor back in high school (who was a historian and taught at the Naval Academy). I remember him saying they would smoke corn cob pipes though. His point was that people knew smoking would ruin your lungs, even back then.
The phrase about nails in coffins (as it was written in the late 1700's by Wolcot) had nothing to do with cigarettes or even tobacco.
Peter Pindar (John Wolcot): Expostulatory Odes, Ode xv. This is the whole ode:
"Care to our coffin adds a nail, no doubt,
And every grin so merry draws one out."
My interpretation is that if we worry about or death ("care to our coffin"), we come closer to it ("adds a nail"). It seems to be a statement about anxiety and worry being unhealthy. And the second line is obviously the corollary.
I think I would fear anyone that had a smoking ***.
"Care" is being used in an archaic sense, meaning "worry". That is, being worried adds a nail to our coffin; being merry draws one out. Presumably, happy people live longer (and I think there is some evidence for this).
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