I have an ecig but I am not a fan. The last time that I used mine was in the cabin of an American cruise liner, on the occasion of my grand-daughter’s wedding. That was in the Med. And a lovely occasion it was. I got to visit Pompeii – worth three days of wonderment on its own.
Dick Puddlecote (see sidebar) has mentioned ‘sightings’ of lesser-spotted vapers using ecigs blatantly in pubs in The Midlands. They must predominate in the Midlands. It might be worth organising a trip to The Midlands to set up a hide so that we can do some ‘vaper spotting’. The hide would, of course, merely be a base from which to emerge with the appropriate equipment, such as hidden cameras to record the sightings. The back of one of DP’s trucks would be fine as a hide.
I saw a couple of people standing outside the pub using ecigs last Friday. I thought, “Why are they not doing so inside?” I thought of asking them, but thought better. Why should I intervene? It is for them to get the courage off their own bat, without outside encouragement. I have enough on my plate in connection with growing stuff.
But, tonight, the pub was very, very quiet. I know the Manager very well. He appeared. I took the opportunity, and, in the most careful of terms, asked him what the ‘attitude’ was in connection with ecig use. His answer was that the company was against, and that ecig use in the restaurant would not be permitted, but that, in the pub, he was not bothered. Only if ‘something happened’ would he feel obliged to ‘do something’.
What I vaguely understood from this conversation was that Managers more senior than him have decided to ‘turn a blind eye’ until some legal verboten appears. In all probability, they would not even interfere in the restaurant unless someone complained. I just cannot envisage the Management interfering with a party of twenty people who have just ordered £500 of foodstuffs, if one of the party pulled out an ecig. They might all decamp and go elsewhere.
It is a matter of exercising freedom. I might just dig out my ecig and take it with me to the pub next time I go when it is reasonably busy. Say, next Friday. It is a matter of establishing the principle of freedom more firmly. Better to do so when there are a lot of people about who know you. It is a matter of cocking a snoot at the Zealots. It is a matter of drawing a line beyond which the Zealots cannot pass. It is a matter of pressuring the Pubcos, whose shares are junk shares.
What is critical, and I hope that vapers can see this, is that whatever the EU decide is irrelevant to them. They claim to have a solid organisation, but I doubt it. I suspect that they are much the same as smokers – plentiful but disorganised. What they need to do is gain the high moral ground. They can do if they wish, since they are trying to stop smoking tobacco. They have every right to insist that:
1. Their machines are physically safe.
2. That nicotine ecig liquid is safe.
3. That there are no known adverse health effects from small amounts of nicotine.
There is no reason that ecigs should come under the aegis of The Health Dept or Tobacco Control.
It is up to them.
A curious thing appeared when I wrote to my MEP via Forest about the Tobacco Directive. It turned out that my MEP is Nick Griffin of the BNP party! How weird is that! “Of all the MEPs in all the world …… “. But the response from his office was sensible and encouraging:
Nick Griffin recognises that civil liberties and personal freedoms in modern Britain are under attack from the very powerful ‘politically correct’ lobby. At present, it is British patriots and smokers who are the primary focus for sanction and ‘re-education’ but the groups identified as dysfunctional and in need of some ‘PC’ attention will, no doubt, expand with time.
The British National Party believes that individual choice is an essential element in a free society, and that is why it has pledged to abolish the ban on smoking in pubs. In place of the blanket ban on smoking, landlords would instead be given the choice to decide for themselves – according to their own business plans and circumstances – whether to offer a smoking or non-smoking environment to their customers. This will mean, in turn, that individual pub customers also have discretion over whether to direct their custom to a smoking or non-smoking pub, or perhaps a pub with separate smoking and non-smoking areas.
We can only hope that our MPs actually concern themselves with THE FACTS, if ever the directive comes to a vote in parliament, rather than the histrionics of the CHILDREN’S PARTY, which masquerades as part of the Labour party, part of the Liberal Party and part of the Conservative party.
It is time that the chicanery was revealed.