Who doesn’t indulge in vices: We overeat, smoke or drink knowing that sooner or later we will pay a price.

The question is should we leave it to God or karma to settle accounts, or should the government or private corporations punish those who give in their weaknesses?

When you see a 400-pound man munching on a Double Whooper do you reason he will die of a heart attack, or do you say to yourself, “Gluttons like him should pay a huge health insurance premium?

From the United Press International:

“Proposals being considered by the British government may deny cigarette smokers routine operations unless they quit smoking a month prior.

The Daily Telegraph said Monday the plans from the Leicester City West Primary Care Trust propose smokers nationwide lose part of their National Health Service benefits unless they give up their vice.

The proposals come in the wake of recent research that found smokers take significantly longer to recuperate from surgery than non-smokers.

The research also found regular smokers were more susceptible to hospital-based infections.”

Smoking is a nasty, disgusting and unhealthy addiction, but I hope the British government doesn’t refuse routine medical procedures to smokers unless they quit smoking before their scheduled operations.

It should be noted that England has National Health Care and the government has the authority to decide who should be treated and under what circumstances.

Where does governmental interfering in our personal lives end? Alcoholics also cost governments billions annually; should they be denied medical treatment for non-emergency conditions unless they can submit proof they recently went to rehab?

And what about grouchy people; they are more susceptible to ulcers, and other medical conditions caused by stress. Should hospitals force ill-tempered folks to make an appointment with Dr. Phil before they are treated?

I hope this “Big Brother” proposal doesn’t gain any traction in America. We should educate smokers about the dangers of their addiction, but the government shouldn’t punish them. Leave the punishment to God or karma.


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