Prejudice against smokers increases, state sanctioned.

Gallup in the USA have just published an opinion poll on people’s attitudes to smokers, the obese get a mention too. It seems that 25% of Americans have “less respect” for smokers with disturbingly 5% of smokers themselves having less respect for fellow smokers and ex smokers at 33% being the most intolerant.

Gallup conclude: “This aspect of smoking has intensified over the past two decades as smokers’ share of the population has declined. Overweight people may also feel the sting of social criticism, but it appears to be less routine than for smokers.”

It seems the campaign of denormalisation is working.

One in Four Americans Have Less Respect for Smokers

Smokers face more social disapproval than those who are overweight

by Lydia Saad

PRINCETON, NJ — Both smokers and overweight people face a certain amount of societal disapproval in the United States, but the situation is worse for smokers. One in four Americans report having less respect for someone who smokes, twice the level who say they have less respect for a person who is overweight (12%).

U.S. Bias Against Smokers and Overweight People, July 2011

Society Growing Less Tolerant of Smokers

Anti-smoker bias is higher today than it was two decades ago, when between 14% and 17% of Americans said they had less respect for smokers. The expansion of the nonsmoking population over the same period may partly explain this, as the percentage of adult smokers has fallen from 27% to 22%.

Naturally, nonsmokers are the primary source of bias against smokers. Thirty percent say they have less respect for smokers, while just 5% of smokers share this view. However, former smokers are nearly as likely as adults who have never smoked — 24% vs. 33% — to look down on smokers.

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3 Responses to Prejudice against smokers increases, state sanctioned.

  1. JJ says:

    So – they all have less respect for someone like Albert Einstein because he smoked a pipe, but more respect for a person like Hitler because he didn’t smoke?

  2. Pat Nurse says:

    Yes it seems so JJ. A bit like smokerphobics prefer the smell of faeces and farts than a fresh natural plant. Denormalistion aims to denormalise the normal while normalisaing the weirdos. *sigh* šŸ˜¦

  3. Junican says:

    It would be surprising if the result were otherwise, wouldn’t it? But, more importantly, why should I, a smoker, bother my head about it? What would I want the respect of idiots for? I’m not a politician.
    But I cannot help but wonder why anyone ever thought the question worth asking. Frankly, the sillier they get the better.

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