Letter writer: High rates of student smoking casts cloud over Warren Wilson College’s image

Graphic by Lori Deaton

Our first visit to Warren Wilson College was in 2010 to hear Bill McKibben, environmentalist, author and founder of the first global climate-change movement. It is the perfect, bucolic setting for recognition of what we citizens of the Earth need to do.

Now that we live near, we’re able to visit more often and attended a recent fiddle and banjo competition there and took out-of-state visitors to see the campus.

Needless to say, your news about the high rate of students smoking casts a cloud over the image of Warren Wilson [“Smoke and Mirrors: Big Tobacco Smokes Warren Wilson College, May 6, Xpress]. Save the Earth, but not the students?

— Emily Cooper
Asheville

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7 thoughts on “Letter writer: High rates of student smoking casts cloud over Warren Wilson College’s image

  1. jack Listerio

    Yet a simple look at the chemistry shows us that its:

    The Chemistry of Secondary Smoke About 94% of secondary smoke is composed of water vapor and ordinary air with a slight excess of carbon dioxide. Another 3 % is carbon monoxide. The last 3 % contains the rest of the 4,000 or so chemicals supposedly to be found in smoke… but found, obviously, in very small quantities if at all.This is because most of the assumed chemicals have never actually been found in secondhand smoke. (1989 Report of the Surgeon General p. 80). Most of these chemicals can only be found in quantities measured in nanograms, picograms and femtograms. Many cannot even be detected in these amounts: their presence is simply theorized rather than measured. To bring those quantities into a real world perspective, take a saltshaker and shake out a few grains of salt. A single grain of that salt will weigh in the ballpark of 100 million picograms! (Allen Blackman. Chemistry Magazine 10/08/01). – (Excerpted from “Dissecting Antismokers’ Brains” with permission of the author.)

  2. jack Listerio

    OSHA also took on the passive smoking fraud and this is what came of it:

    Reference Manual on Scientific Evidence: Third Edition

    This sorta says it all

    These limits generally are based on assessments of health risk and calculations of concentrations that are associated with what the regulators believe to be negligibly small risks. The calculations are made after first identifying the total dose of a chemical that is safe (poses a negligible risk) and then determining the concentration of that chemical in the medium of concern that should not be exceeded if exposed individuals (typically those at the high end of media contact) are not to incur a dose greater than the safe one.

    So OSHA standards are what is the guideline for what is acceptable ”SAFE LEVELS”

    OSHA SAFE LEVELS

    All this is in a small sealed room 9×20 and must occur in ONE HOUR.

    For Benzo[a]pyrene, 222,000 cigarettes.

    “For Acetone, 118,000 cigarettes.

    “Toluene would require 50,000 packs of simultaneously smoldering cigarettes.

    Acetaldehyde or Hydrazine, more than 14,000 smokers would need to light up.

    “For Hydroquinone, “only” 1250 cigarettes.

    For arsenic 2 million 500,000 smokers at one time.

    The same number of cigarettes required for the other so called chemicals in shs/ets will have the same outcomes.

    So, OSHA finally makes a statement on shs/ets :

    Field studies of environmental tobacco smoke indicate that under normal conditions, the components in tobacco smoke are diluted below existing Permissible Exposure Levels (PELS.) as referenced in the Air Contaminant Standard (29 CFR 1910.1000)…It would be very rare to find a workplace with so much smoking that any individual PEL would be exceeded.” -Letter From Greg Watchman, Acting Sec’y, OSHA.

    Why are their any smoking bans at all they have absolutely no validity to the courts or to science!

  3. jack Listerio

    Manufacturing the science to meet the agenda, in black on white. Does anyone still have doubts?

    ”Bal laughs when asked about the role of scientific evidence in guiding policy decisions. “There was no science on how to do a community intervention on something of this global dimension,” he says. “Where there is no science, you have to go and be venturesome—you can’t use the paucity of science as an excuse to do nothing. We created the science, we did the interventions and then all the scientists came in behind us and analyzed what we did.”

    Read under the title :
    Tobacco Control: The Long War—When the Evidence Has to Be Created

    milbankDOTorg/uploads/documents/0712populationhealth/0712populationhealthDOThtml

  4. jack Listerio

    Colleges being forced to go smokefree by Obama Administration

    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced an initiative to ban smoking from college campuses last month. This is part of the HHS goal to create a society free of tobacco-related disease and death, according to their action plan released by the HHS in 2010.

    Colleges who fail to enact campus-wide smoking bans and other tobacco-free policies may soon face the loss of grants and contracts from the HHS, according to the plan. Western receives grants through a subdivision of the HHS called the National Institutes of Health, Acting Vice Provost for Research Kathleen Kitto said.

    Obama administration to push for eliminating smoking on college campuses

    President Barack Obama has already promised not to smoke cigarettes in the White House. If his administration has its way, American college students will soon be required to follow suit while they’re on campus.

  5. jack Listerio

    Buying smoking bans nationwide with federal tax dollars

    Gautier modifies smoking ban

    GAUTIER – The Gautier City Council has changed the local smoking ordinance to exclude bars from having to go smoke-free and will allow businesses to have separate indoor rooms where people can smoke, as long as they have proper ventilation.

    On June 3, the City Council passed the ordinance for all businesses. The only exclusion was a private club.

    The council voted 5-2 Tuesday to make the change. Five residents and business owners asked the council to make the change.

    Danielle Litsey of the Mississippi Tobacco Free Coalition of Jackson County says the ordinance as revised would not meet federal standards as a “comprehensive” ordinance that would have qualified the city for health insurance grants

    The main condition to obtain a $50,000 Blue Cross Blue Shield Healthy Hometown grant is to have a smoke-free ordinance wothout any exception, and the change prevents the city from obtaining it. Namely this disappointed the city mayor, but he will not stop Gautier from moving forward. They will find good ways to make Gautier a healthy city.

    • jack Listerio

      The blue cross blue shield grant comes thru the obamacare 9 billion dollar a year slush fund………

      • jack Listerio

        THE CDC GIVE GRANTS OUT TO ANTI-TOBACCO GROUPS TO LOBBY FOR SMOKING BANS AT THE STATE AND LOCAL LEVELS……………

        Illicit Lobbying
        Report: Local health departments illegally used federal stimulus money to lobby

        April 16, 2013 2:15 pm

        At least seven local health departments illegally used stimulus grant funds to lobby for greater taxes and restrictions on tobacco and unhealthy foods, according to a report released Tuesday by a nonprofit watchdog group.

        The stimulus-funded Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) program disbursed about $373 million intended to educate the public about tobacco use and obesity. Federal law prohibits grantees from using the funds for lobbying activities.

        According to the group Cause of Action, local health departments from Alabama to California used the funds to devise or promote legislation designed to curb tobacco use or combat obesity.

        The report detailing the allegations is the product of a 19-month investigation into the CPPW program.

        “[Cause of Action’s] investigation revealed that CPPW money went to support lobbyists and public relations companies who used taxpayer dollars to push laws and agendas that would lead to tax increases on tobacco and high calorie products,” the report said.

        The report said illicit uses of CPPW grant funds “essentially transform[ed] the CPPW program into a conduit for lobbying for higher taxes and bans on otherwise legal consumer products.”

        Federal law prohibits grant recipients from using federal grant funds to influence “an official of any government, to favor, adopt, or oppose, by vote or otherwise, any legislation, law, ratification, policy, or appropriation.”

        Internal guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which administers the CPPW program, clarifies that the law applies “specifically to lobbying related to any proposed, pending, or future federal, state, or local tax increase, or any proposed, pending, or future requirement or restriction on any legal consumer product.”

        Cause of Action executive director Dan Epstein criticized the CDC for faulty oversight in an interview with the Washington Free Beacon. He also said specific CPPW grantees may have “committed not just violations [of lobbying prohibitions], but fraud.”

        According to internal communications from South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) obtained by Cause of Action through public records requests, DHEC officials altered meeting minutes in order to hide the involvement of officials involved in grant fund disbursements after CDC expressed concerns about the use of grant funds for lobbying activities.

        “The DHEC stated outright that the purpose of altering the minutes was to hide the fact that its CPPW program coordinator had directed illegal lobbying in the pursuit of smoke-free ordinances,” according to the Cause of Action report.

        The DHEC did not return a request for comment.

        DHEC grant activities, like those of other state health agencies examined in the report, were explicitly geared toward specific legislative goals. Its application for CPPW funding said it would use taxpayer funds to “increase the support for and adoption of comprehensive smoke-free laws.”

        While that proposal and similar ones from other states appeared to violate laws governing the use of federal grant funds, Epstein says the CDC has made no effort to effectively oversee the CPPW program.

        “It’s not just a sign of misuse of taxpayer dollars,” Epstein said. “In fact, there’s some indication that the CDC encouraged this to occur.”

        Previous investigations of the CPPW program have produced similar findings.

        According to the inspector general for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), CDC’s parent agency, federal guidelines for CPPW grant recipients “appear to authorize, or even encourage, grantees to use funds for impermissible lobbying.”

        Members of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce cited that report and apparent violations of the lobbying prohibitions in multiple communications with HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius regarding the CPPW program. The committee’s investigative panel examined the program during a 2012 hearing.

        Annual CPPW disbursements are scheduled to grow to about $2 billion in 2015. When expenditures increase six-fold, Epstein said “we’re in a serious situation, because we’re going to undoubtedly see six times the fraud.”

        Florida’s Miami-Dade County Health Department, one of the agencies singled out in Cause of Action’s report, denied any wrongdoing in a statement emailed to the Washington Free Beacon.

        The Department “did not utilize any of the CPPW funding for lobbying activities, nor does the Department have any reason to believe that any of its contracted providers did so either,” said spokeswoman Olga Connor. “The Department of Health’s contracts specifically bar any provider from utilizing the CPPW funds for any type of lobbying activities.”

        The CDC did not return request for comment. Miami-Dade County was the only local government highlighted by Cause of Action to return a request for comment.

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