Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Eheads as anti-smoking advocates!!!!!

I wish! With the loud whispers going around that a big tobacco company is sponsoring this much-awaited E-heads reunion, my only wish is that this great (dis) band will use their influence for the greater good. How? By talking about the hazards of smoking on their concert night, no less. Imagine one smoke-free concert. That would be double the fun! Great music and clean air (or at least, nicotine-free).

I'm sure Eheads have reached a point in their lives (one time or another) when they looked for significance in what they do. This could be that moment. Besides, Ely Buendia should know the hazards that smoking brings. He almost died of heart attack a year or so ago. I've heard that Ely used to be a smoker. But granting that he never smoked, the second-hand smoke alone that he got during gigs could be a big factor for his illness. (Of course, we know that second-hand smoking is just as dangerous.)

According to the Department of Health, smoking-related diseases kills at least 10 people every hour in the Philippines alone. That is 240 Pinoys everyday or 87,600 every year dying from smoking-related diseases. Public health spending on smoking-related diseases reaches up to P70-billion a year. Imagine how that money could have been used to treat other diseases.

In my family alone, we could have easily spent half a million already the past few years on hospital bills and medicines due to my smoking history. =( Just this morning, I spent P3,000 for my daughter's Pulmonary Function Test. I have yet to buy her medicines. All my three children were born premature (Ben was in the ICU for almost a month), no thanks to my being a heavy smoker in the past, complicated by a previously unknown disease. Unfortunately, they all grew up to have asthma and since they were all born premature, they easily get lung diseases. Almost two years ago, Ben got confined for two weeks due to TB. It was only lately that I was able to put the puzzles together. Smoking did us in!

How did I get into smoking? My father was a heavy smoker and so were all of my siblings (except for one sister). A lot of my cousins were and (some) are still smokers. It was just but natural for me to fall into the trap, like many others.

We have long declared our home smoke-free. And so back to my wishful thinking, I really hope Eheads realize they can use their influence for good, and like their many hits in the past, spread the gospel of making concerts in the Philippines, well, SMOKE-FREE.

(photo from eheads website)

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