Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Don't Be A "Drag" Queen

There was a time not so long ago when there was a tremendous amount of hate and violence being perpetrated against the homosexual community in the United States. I personally can remember reading stories in the news, or seeing it on TV, when the local police departments constantly raided gay clubs, beat their patrons mercilessly, arrested them, and then sent them to jail. Being gay meant a life full of constant persecution.

But, the LGBT community eventually became united, used their collective brains, and fought back hard against that hate, ignorance, and constant persecution. And just like many other minority groups who've been persecuted throughout American history, they've deservedly won the same rights given to all other Americans in this great country.

However, I think they're still being seriously persecuted - but by the tobacco industry.

According to The DC Center -
Members of the LGBT community smoke at a far greater rate than that of the general population, although estimates vary widely. In one 2004 California Study, lesbian women were 70% more likely to smoke than other women, and gay men were more than 50% more likely to smoke than other men. More recent research suggests this number may be even higher. The LGBT National Tobacco Control Network estimates that the LGBT community is 50% to 200% more likely than others to be addicted to tobacco.
These are serious statistics that need to be addressed promptly. I'd like to see the LGBT use the same sort of tenacity they used to win their constitutional rights, but used to fight back against the tyranny of nicotine addiction.

March 26-30, 2012 is National LGBT Health Awareness Week. So for that week, I'm calling on the LGBT community to band together and address one of their greatest threats, one that kills more LGBT members than any physical violence ever did - smoking.

Come out against smoking and stop being considered the tobacco industry's "drag" queen. There's nothing feminine, appealing, or humorous about being exploited and dying young.

1 comment:

  1. Here's how to get started doing something about it -

    Are you between the ages of 16 and 24? Do you care about health and the LGBT community? Do you worry about the toll that smoking and tobacco is taking on the lives of your friends, family and community?

    Join our youth planning committee for the 8th National LGBT Health Equity Summit, Bridging the Gap: Promising Practices in LGBT Health and Tobacco Control in Kansas City, Missouri on August 14th, 2012.

    Source: The Network for LGBT Health Equity