Free Stuff for People Who Could Afford It But Won't Buy It is "Social Responsibility"
See, it's this idea that makes me want to throw up. This is your mentality, America, babysitting the down-trodden, broke and lazy. Why would they want to change?!
Here's the short version of this plea: Our "clients" spend $3000 a year on cigarettes but they won't spend $45 a week on nicotine patches so FOR THE LOVE OF GOD we have to keep providing them for free, please don't cut us off! Oh the humanity!
via the Jamestown Post-Journal (NY):
To the Readers' Forum:
I want to express my sincere concern about the possibility of eliminating the program to offer free NRT (nicotine replacement therapy/patches, gum and lozenges) to our community. As healthcare professionals, we teamed up with the Tri County Tobacco Control Program to offer these products to our patients and their families to assist in a quit attempt to stop the use of tobacco products.
In the past 18 months, we have provided NRT products to 163 people. They are always very grateful for the help as most have tried many times to quit unsuccessfully. Others have stopped into our clinic in the Riverwalk Center to get free NRT help here. We never turn anyone away.
*A pack a day smoker spends approximately $ 3,000 per year on cigarettes. Additional healthcare costs for a smoker are substantially higher and over a lifetime, cannot be measured.
* Many of the people who need this assistance are lower income and would not consider purchasing these products if they were not free.
*Children and others in the same household who suffer from the effects of second hand smoke can breathe easier.
*An individual's ability to heal from injury is greatly impacted by smoking. Smokers tend to have a higher incidence of infection and significantly slower recovery from surgery or an injury.
*NRT can double the chances of quitting for good.
*One in every five deaths in the US is smoking related.
*Smoking is the No. 1 preventable cause of death.
Nicotine is a very powerful drug and the people I talk with every day report that they wish they had never started. To eliminate this effective program is misguided and insensitive to the needs of so many who have been victimized by the tobacco industry.
Please find the necessary dollars to balance the state budget in programs that have been shown to be unsuccessful, riddled with fraud and overlap other similar programs. Social services are a necessary part of our governing system but the waste and unchecked programs that continue to exist should be the first place Albany looks for the short-fall of funds to balance the budget. It is what any household would do when funds are reduced.
If you or a loved one has successfully quit smoking as a result of this program, please take a moment to share your concerns with: Assemblyman Joseph Giglio at 373-7103 or Assemblyman William Parment at 664-7773 today.
Patient Development Director
Chautauqua PT, OT & SLP Professionals
Judi, it's REALLY cute and heart-warming that you think these people are entitled to government help but, uh, you realize smoking is a non-essential indulgence right? We're not talking about saving the whales or stopping rainforest clear-cutting, we're talking about grown adults spending their money on death sticks (as a death stick consumer myself, I have sympathy for the whole "but it's horribly addictive" argument but you won't see my heart bleeding all over the floor).
Aren't cigarettes $11 a pack in New York? If you're stupid enough to pay that (says the girl who pays $7 in California), you certainly don't deserve a handout as a reward.