However, despite Chapman's longstanding dedication to
Responding at the British Medical Journal to a study conducted by the arguably insane Georg E Matt, Chapman has this to say on the idea that moving into a home once owned by smokers is a health hazard.
[...] the soup of gases, fine and ultra-fine particles in tobacco smoke that include irritants, toxins and carcinogens has much in common with smoke emitted as pyrolisis products from the combustion of other organic matter: when you breath wood smoke, cooking smoke or petroleum smoke, you are exposed to many of the very same irritants and carcinogens that are also in tobacco smoke.Just to translate: that's academic-speak for "you're talking crap, mate". But then, all but the most gullible will have worked that one out already.
So why did Matt et al consider only nicotine? There is not a house anywhere that is not finely carpeted with many of the very same pyrolysis compounds "that go along with" nicotine but which originate from everyday activities like heating, cooking, candles, electrical appliances, and leaving windows and doors open to allow household exposure to motor transport fumes. Had they done so, equally "alarming" information about all our houses would have emerged to give their findings some important perspective.
For someone so wedded to demonising smokers and smoking (Chapman once warned that Muslims would be inhaling pig's blood if they smoked) to speak out, though, would suggest that there is considerable unease in tobacco control circles at some of the execrable nonsense being spewed about thirdhand smoke. In fact, his denouement makes exactly this point.
It is important that research documents residuals from tobacco smoke. But it is equally important that consumers and policy makers are not led to believe that the chemical compounds thus located are somehow unique to tobacco smoke.No. That would be lying and tobacco control organisations wouldn't dream of such a thing, now would they?
The omission of this information in such reports risks harming the credibility of tobacco control.OK, funny though that is, calm down and stop giggling please, you're putting me off.
That Chapman is speaking out should be evidence enough that the thirdhand smoke scam is, well, a scam. But in doing so, he kinda puts some much-belated perspective on the hysteria surrounding passive smoke as well.
He points out that wood smoke is twice as dangerous as that emitted by cigars and cigarettes; that diesel emissions dwarf the dangers of smoke in a casino which allows it; that passive smoke exposure is on a par with emissions from clothes dryers, popcorn poppers, candles, irons and toasters; and that nicotine itself is a benign concern.
If thirdhand smoke studies - which are so far-fetched that rubbishing them is like shooting fish in a barrel - elicit such responses from anti-smokers worried about their reputations and funding ... perhaps we need a lot more of them.
Bring 'em on!
H/T Dave Atherton