Smokers Sometimes Have Double Standards
Double standards exist in every society and group, but it is amusing to observe how these often play out. A humorous hot guy at a party might be able to get away with saying borderline offensive comments to people because he can laugh it off as joking, whereas someone else might get in trouble for it. The same is true on forums and the Internet, but I think it is just a phenomenon of society really. People do not set out to create double standards, but these pop up most expectantly.
In my life I have often come to accept that double standards are everywhere, but from time to time it is funny to see how some get away with what others cannot. In high school there was that classmate who ditched class almost every day, but still aced the class. On the other hand there would be the students that sat in class asking questions, studying hard, but who would end up with a lower grades than the person who was never there. I even knew people who bragged about not showing up for the final but still got a C in the class, whereas another friend struggled through the entire class and ended up with the same grade. For a long time I have thought part of the grade should more heavily rely on effort and attendance because a few brilliant souls can easily pass any course, whereas others come everyday and might struggle with their studies, but often end up with the same or lower grade as those with lackluster attendance. Honestly I think it is more commendable to put in that Hercelean effort, and five years down the line these individuals will probably cherish the class more than those who never attended.
The same is true for the Internet where double standards pop up from time to time. People have no qualms calling a blatant spammer a spammer, and a few even say they hate spammers. It is okay to say you hate people that clog up your inbox, but one person said they hated smokers, some can get overly sensitive about it. I am an overly sensitive person myself, but I was able to see through the comment that "I hate smokers" did not mean he hated people. Some people do not like smoking and have strong opinions about it, whereas others do smoke and take offense to anyone alluding to how they may hate smokers.
Okay, once my friend and I even said we hated smokers, but that was because everyone had to walk through the commons area at our university, which was lined with benches where almost half of the students smoked. Talk about stinky! Since it was outside and a few feet away from the building people were allowed to do this, but for those of us who could not stand aroma, it really clogged our lungs. It got to the point I was willing to walk the long away around the building as opposed to smelling all of that putrid air. So in jest my friend and I once said we hated smokers, but that was just because we had to walk through their cloud every afternoon to get to class.
Sorry if smokers take that personally, but from time to time there are double standards about smoking. This has subsided since the mid-nineties when I was an undergrad, but even today at bus stops people smoke out in the open. I literally start choking when several people all light up there, and to me it seems that it would not be allowed because it is a place in public where people wait for buses. I actually started walking longer distances because I hated all the smoking people using public transportation engaged in.
Many of us complained to the transportation company about the gagging stench, but seeing the bus driver light up made us realize it must be okay. The bus stop is outside and away from buildings, so I suppose smoking is allowed. To me it seems like a double standard some smokers complain about their rights to smoke inside and smoke in general, when even outside we have to put up with the stench of their aroma.
Honestly for exercise and cleaner air I decided it was just easier to walk the three miles home rather than wait twenty to thirty minutes at a bus stop clogged with smokers. This is one of the several times I have gone the long way to avoid cigarette smoke, but I would rather do this than breath it in.
Another reason I hate smoking is because growing up my dad felt the need to smoke and treat himself to many luxuries, like cigarettes, but he would lecture my mom about driving into the city to buy things we needed. "Why can't you not get it here in town?" he would implore, but when he wanted something, well he always bought it. His double standards went beyond cigarettes and that is not what this is all about, but often others get away with what others cannot. Years later he realized treating his friends to lunch and socializing with them more than his family was a loss since they have all moved on with their lives and left him behind, but it took me a long time to get over this hurt. By the time I was thirty I did not care anymore, but I can tell any parents who smoke that your kids probably have some really strong feelings against it. However, that is just my opinion. Take it or leave it.
So, if someone says they hate smokers on a forum, please do not get overly upset about it. Other people have their equally strong opinions about certain issues, but if it comes to a sensitive topic like smoking, I have noticed people get very upset about it. I do not think anyone would be upset if someone said they hate spammers on a forum. I really, really hate cheese, but I doubt the cheesemakers of the world will take offense to that. I even hate it when people put a cheesy item on my plate, but that does not mean I hate the person. Sometimes hate is a word that is overused to express detest of a certain thing, not hatred of a person.