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A call to action

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  #1  
Old June 10th, 2007, 01:58 PM
Hajo Flettner
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Default A call to action

Recently I have been thinking about the way the public at large sees our favorite pass time and my reflections have not been happy ones. A few months back I had a new patio cover installed in and the workmen saw my Egyptian rig and concluded that it was for less then legal and while they saw that as a good thing it just re-confirmed to me that the general population doesn’t exactly look upon our thing with favour.

I could recall numerous instances in which having a narghile has caused myself and other legal hassles and countless experiences of the general population having a totally wrong perspective about what we do with our rigs.

Yet the legal issues are not the extent of the problems we face and we need to know that. I assume that many of us are aware that it has been perfectly acceptable to be horribly bigoted towards Arabs for several years now. One consequence of such attitudes being prevalent is that to a great many Americans our hobby is reviled for no other reason then it is viewed as Arabic in origin.

Lastly, we need to get serious about confronting the very popular desire to suppress all forms of tobacco consumption. I am sure we all have noted the incessant anti-tobacco adds and indoctrination sessions and ever more draconian public bans yet this just the tip of the ice burg so to speak. The taxes paid on shisha (or any tobacco product for that matter) are outrageous and getting worse every year. In case some of you haven’t been paying attention people are being denied health coverage, losing apartments, the freedom to smoke in your own house and even custody of children all as a result of the supposed danger of second hand smoke.

I raise all this stuff because it is vital that do something to counteract and reverse public perception about what our hobby is and why we do it. Changing how people view us is the first step towards re-gaining our freedoms and the only means to prevent the neo-Bolshevik desire to regulate and control our lives from advancing into other aspects of our lives any more then it already has.

What is needed is practical ideas about how to address how we’re perceived and then act upon them.

Any and all input is welcome.
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  #2  
Old June 10th, 2007, 03:10 PM
mcknight
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Default Re: A call to action

Tryin to get that Nazar Hookah eh?
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  #3  
Old June 10th, 2007, 03:20 PM
girlgeek
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Default Re: A call to action

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcknight
Tryin to get that Nazar Hookah eh?
YOMANK!

On a more serious note, I don't think there are enough hookah smokers to make an effective lobbying group. Not enough money for ads, studies etc. Our best bet may be making a nuisance of ourselves on a case by case basis. I just don't think there are enough clubs and smokers for a real grassroots effort.
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  #4  
Old June 10th, 2007, 05:21 PM
cymptom
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Default Re: A call to action

First of all, I think people should feel encouraged to smoke in public -- it forces onlookers and law enforcement to question their own negative conceptions of what is visibly taking place.

Also, if you have a good restaurant and hookah lounge nearby, take your parents, grandparents, their friends and your friends -- show them what it's all about. I went with my parents and grandparents, and now they're telling their co-workers about it, showing them pictures and making plans to go again...
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  #5  
Old June 10th, 2007, 07:43 PM
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Default Re: A call to action

My friends and family know i smoke hookah. most of them love it. They love the way it smells, how cool it looks. My mom is worried about the whole addiction/ carcenogenic affect, but she was a 2 pack a day smoker for years..... so she understands when i say i dont want to hear it from her. But she doesn't say no either.

My educate everyone i know about hookah. When i am at work people always ask me if i am in "hookah lookah land" because i'm always on hookah boards.

All my officers know what a hookah is and know who to call if they have questions in regards to one. lol. and soon a few will actually smoke with me when i can get a time and date to go to the lounge. That was the FIRST thing ih ad to break about my officers when i started to work here... DONT CALL IT ANY OTHER NAMES BESIDES IT'S TRADITIONAL NAMES.... any others will cause you to get the beatdown. period. and it's worked they no longer call it by it's long distance cousins nicknames.


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  #6  
Old June 11th, 2007, 09:12 AM
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Default Re: A call to action

Yeah, it's always strange explaining to people who don't know about it...they kinda look at you like "yeeaahh.....rigght.." lol. But I've found they come around once they become educated, for the most part.
As far as how John Q. Public views it nationally, that's a whole different beast. I believe that the only reason hookah smoking is generally misunderstood is due to its subculture nature. Popular as it might be, it is not such a phenomenon that it is commonly put into the public eye; Rarely is hookah smoking displayed in a positive light anyway, this surely doesnt help the situation.
So keep your friends,family,and local authorities educated, and for the most part we should be able to smoke in peace.
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  #7  
Old June 11th, 2007, 12:17 PM
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Default Re: A call to action

I need to find out if Ohio allows smoking in their parks now that there is a state-wide smoking ban at restaurants.
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  #8  
Old June 11th, 2007, 05:48 PM
nofrendo
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Default Re: A call to action

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostofdavid
I need to find out if Ohio allows smoking in their parks now that there is a state-wide smoking ban at restaurants.
CA allows smoking at parks and it's banned in restaurants... I'm pretty sure anywhere outside is OK
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  #9  
Old June 13th, 2007, 07:02 PM
PerznPerversion
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Default Re: A call to action

Quote:
Originally Posted by nofrendo
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostofdavid
I need to find out if Ohio allows smoking in their parks now that there is a state-wide smoking ban at restaurants.
CA allows smoking at parks and it's banned in restaurants... I'm pretty sure anywhere outside is OK
Im usually really nervous to smoke at high profile parks because i know cops will give me a hard time

But its the only place where i can smoke in peace. If its true that i can smoke in the park then i guess theres no reason to worry =-)
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  #10  
Old June 14th, 2007, 08:27 AM
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Default Re: A call to action

This is a big frustration to me...having people think I would do anything funny with my beloved hookah! I try to educate, but people automatically assume that the hookah is for illegal purposes...it is really frustrating to me...really really frustrating!

I took my hookah on vacation, and I got 4 new people to try it out. The non-smokers loved it, and asked me to bring it out every night...and the cigarette smokers, only tried it a few times. But they did like the Choc/Mint
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  #11  
Old June 18th, 2007, 11:26 AM
Hajo Flettner
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Default Re: A call to action

I’m glad to see the replies and I hope a few people are thinking about this topic.

One idea that has occurred to me with respect to people not understanding what our narghiles are for is that we need to spend more of our smoking time in public places. Given the current anti-tobacco climate we should expect plenty of snide, self righteous comments and petty hassles by police and the “you are poisoning me” types. Still, it’s the best way to let people know what our thing is all about.

A second point is a bit more difficult yet it is something we need to do anyways and that is educate ourselves about what is wrong with the arguments made by the anti-smoking lobby.
I regularly hear people say smokers are self-destructive and that second hand smoke threatens the environment and everyone near the smoker and that suppressing smokers is justified as a result. Being able to debate these people in public is something that is often forced upon us and we should be able to do so if we are to be taken seriously. If we wish to enjoy our shisha in a lounge, park or coffee shop we do need to be able to talk about what we do in an intelligent matter be it in a park to some random crank, the owner of a coffee shop, a letter to a newspaper or a town meeting.
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  #12  
Old June 18th, 2007, 12:21 PM
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Default Re: A call to action

It's not the public debate that's the problem (At least within the UK).

It's the fact that the government have already made up there mind to outlaw it. How can you debate the government?

Having said that, I don't personally enjoy sitting in restaurants or pubs and having to breath in cigarette smoke. It actually makes me feel ill. And I certainly do not wish my children to breath in cigarette smoke whilst in aforementioned establishments.

So the smoking ban, in my opinion, is not a bad thing.

The paranoia surrounding smoking however is.

Just my 2pennies.

S.D.
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  #13  
Old June 18th, 2007, 12:58 PM
Hajo Flettner
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Default Re: A call to action

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth_DeNightshade
It's not the public debate that's the problem (At least within the UK).

It's the fact that the government have already made up there mind to outlaw it. How can you debate the government?

Having said that, I don't personally enjoy sitting in restaurants or pubs and having to breath in cigarette smoke. It actually makes me feel ill. And I certainly do not wish my children to breath in cigarette smoke whilst in aforementioned establishments.

So the smoking ban, in my opinion, is not a bad thing.

The paranoia surrounding smoking however is.

Just my 2pennies.

S.D.
Well I suppose that the fact is that public smoking will eventually be banned everywhere in the Western world. Still, I oppose it on principle and my comment about smoking in public are basically for Americans as means of informing the public. One should choose sides based upon what is right rather then chance of success.

As to cigarettes I don't like them at all but the truth is that the second hand smoke bit is junk science. The anti-tobacco lobby is about social control based upon pseudo-science and fadism.
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  #14  
Old June 18th, 2007, 01:46 PM
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Default Re: A call to action

I've had this discussion with several people this weekend alone. It's kinda annoying repeating myself so often, but worth it if just ONE person postivily spreads the words that HOOKAHS are not illegal items.

My BF doesn't mind me smoking, although he doesn't enjoy hookahing as much as myself (and he bought the 1st one!), but allowed me to buy my travel hookah - and now won't let me BRING IT ANYWHERE! He's too worried about what other people and possibly cops will say or do!

Little does he know, that I have FULL INTENTION of smoking in public! There's a beach within walking distance I am planning on visiting as well as a very large public park. One park I did see "No Smoking" notices out - but that's becasue it's a wildlife center as well.

I found a few more places in town that may even allow the hookah as well... but again, happy little BF doesn't want me to take it out! ARGH! It drives me bonkers!
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  #15  
Old June 18th, 2007, 01:59 PM
Hajo Flettner
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Default Re: A call to action

Quote:
Originally Posted by sammniamii
I've had this discussion with several people this weekend alone. It's kinda annoying repeating myself so often, but worth it if just ONE person postivily spreads the words that HOOKAHS are not illegal items.

My BF doesn't mind me smoking, although he doesn't enjoy hookahing as much as myself (and he bought the 1st one!), but allowed me to buy my travel hookah - and now won't let me BRING IT ANYWHERE! He's too worried about what other people and possibly cops will say or do!

Little does he know, that I have FULL INTENTION of smoking in public! There's a beach within walking distance I am planning on visiting as well as a very large public park. One park I did see "No Smoking" notices out - but that's becasue it's a wildlife center as well.

I found a few more places in town that may even allow the hookah as well... but again, happy little BF doesn't want me to take it out! ARGH! It drives me bonkers!
I tend to think that the motto do right and fear no one is an ideal to strive for. If you meekly let others limit your actions you'll soon discover you no longer have a choice. I don't care any longer about being hassled by police and would be commissars so I say what I think and act publicly. If some one is offended by my unwillingness to be intimidated so be it.

I really think we have no choice but to forcefully (and politiely) point out our positions in a well informed manner as often as possible.
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  #16  
Old June 19th, 2007, 09:19 AM
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Default Re: A call to action

"I tend to think that the motto do right and fear no one is an ideal to strive for. If you meekly let others limit your actions you'll soon discover you no longer have a choice. I don't care any longer about being hassled by police and would be commissars so I say what I think and act publicly. If some one is offended by my unwillingness to be intimidated so be it. "--Hajo Flettner

Dude, I'm making posters, t-shirts...what a great quote.
Very well said, man.
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