Post C: A different perspective on tobacco

It is evident after extensive research and observations during my time in Ambon that the tobacco problem is quite worse than I had expected in the coming weeks before arriving, under the impression it was just as toxic as any other country. Focusing on the amount of advertisements I never really got an inside look at how people view tobacco use, specifically non-smokers until meeting Yudith Wacanno a regular visitor of Pattimura park while working on my group’s mural design. Yudith approached us recognising the anti smoking symbol from afar with her friend who ironically was smoking and observing. 

After explaining the intentions of the mural Yudith revealed she was also against tobacco use and why she felt so strongly about the topic. We first discussed why smoking is so evident in men rather than women and the causes that entice people to begin smoking in the first place. she explained that in recent years the amount of women who smoke has gradually risen, according to her own observations with friends and family… however it is an act that women often practice in their homes rather than in public due to the negative associations such as rebellion and prostitution.

Yudith has many friends who smoke but has made it clear that she does not like them smoking around her in an enclosed space such as cafes, restaurants, at home or while driving, unfortunately it is not that easy to escape second hand smoke in a small city like Ambon nor are there many people who are aware of the effects of it. Yudith has many friends who smoke but has made it clear that she does not like them smoking around her in an enclosed space such as cafes, restaurants, at home or while driving, unfortunately it is not that easy to escape second hand smoke in a small city like Ambon nor are there many people who are aware of the effects of it.

It’s just not comfortable being in public sometimes”- Yudith Waccano

Yudith opposes smoking due to seeing her fathers health slowly disintegrate since she was a child, like most boys aged as young as 12 her father began smoking at this age during school. In 2005 38% of boys smoked while 41% of boys aged between 13-15 currently smoke (Marie Dhumieres n.d.), although this is a small increase it’s still extremely problematic as most children are not receiving education about the implications of smoking from school, the government or more importantly at home from their parents. She then goes on to say that the most probable causes for smoking would be directly linked to stress and smokers not having access to resources that would support one to successfully quit. With the recent decision to stop tobacco funded music events, Ambon and Indonesia as a whole have a long way to go until they can reach a tobacco-free life.

Marie Dhumieres,The number of children smoking in Indonesia is getting out of control’, Global Post, Viewed 24 Jan 2019.

<https://www.pri.org/stories/number-children-smoking-indonesia-getting-out-control>

Nawi Ng, L. Weinehall, A. Ohman, 2006, ’If I don’t smoke, I’m not a real man’ — Indonesian boys’ views about smoking, Viewed 24 Jan 2019.

<https://academic.oup.com/her/article/22/6/794/640787>


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