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Assemblywoman Tanner and No-Smoking Rules

September 12, 1987

According to The Times, Tanner was instrumental in blocking an anti-smoking resolution applying to the Assembly chamber and if the ban ever takes effect she said the Assembly sergeants-at-arms will "have to arrest me every day" because "I intend to smoke on the floor."

The deceitful nature of tobacco addiction, which Tanner may not be aware of, is that tobacco only for the moment relaxes the nerves, while subtly storing up a heightened irritability of the nerves which surfaces whenever the tobacco (nicotine) level in the blood drops. That is how it enslaves and promotes either helplessness or belligerency.

The following old laboratory experiment explains this: a full drop of nicotine on the tongue of a dog is instantly fatal. A half drop is not, and the next day, the dog can stand the full drop. Why? Because the dog's basic physiology has been changed by the preceding nonfatal half drop. Similarly, smoking changes the physiology of the smoker's nerves, blood vessels, etc. This also explains why giving up smoking makes the nervous system complain so strongly for a while; like any spoiled creature, it is shocked by a change back to normal.

The way out of the smoking trap is to be aware, first, of the deceitful action of tobacco, and second, of the many hygienic ways to keep the nerves calm without drugs.

Smoking in confined public places is grossly unfair to others, even if as Tanner claimed open windows allegedly reduce or obviate the abuse.

So I was indeed sorry to read of Tanner's intransigent position, and in view of the foregoing physiological facts have urged her to reconsider.

MILES H. ROBINSON

Santa Barbara

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