Wednesday, 20 October 2010 13:33

Snus Warriors

Written by Mick Hellwig
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Mick_Hellwig317x434First off I’d like to apologize to my faithful readers for such a long absence from these pages. Launching The Snuff Taker's Ephemeris magazine and working full time has kept my life a bit overwhelming.  I’m slowing down now so I can get back to my writings here.

I titled this “Snus Warriors” as snus is merely the Swedish word for snuff, and the word snuff covers most forms of non-smoked tobacco. I don’t much like the term smokeless, being a compound word formed of “smoke’” and “less”. That is not the point of non smoked tobacco. We don’t use it to smoke less, we use it to smoke none. Sure some of us still smoke a pipe or cigar occasionally, when 90% of our intake doesn’t involve lighting tobacco I say that other 10% doesn’t count.

When a friend and fellow member here at SnusCENTRAL’s forum (link) asked a question a while back,  I realized how far we have to go.  No offense to him (I will not mention his Woman can be Snus Warriors too!name for fear of community wide backlash against him) but his question was one I figured anyone with any time in the world of internet snus would know. He wasn’t aware that the American FDA was trying to ban flavors in non-smoked tobacco.

To me that was a revealing moment. It showed me just how far we yet have to go to get the word out. If even an involved forum member missed that how can the millions of tobacco users that never look at anything tobacco related online supposed to know?

Before finding snus I would never have thought of looking up the laws about tobacco or, honestly, thought about looking for anything related to tobacco online. I would get online read some political blogs, read through half a dozen gun forums, check my email and move on.

Frighteningly, now I see what I was missing. The American politician were moving to tax tobacco, limit our option, minimize the numbers of companies they needed to collect said taxes from, all the while telling us that tobacco was bad.

Unfortunately, our tobacco loving European cousins have it much worse. Even now in America we can pay all the taxes, higher shipping rates, plus actual product cost, and still we are paying half or less than most of Europe. Don’t even think about snus in Australia or Canada.  A tin of 10 mini portions sells for $8-9 US up in the Great White North.

Side-note ADD momentTobacco is not bad. Inhaling smoldering plant matter is bad, see the difference? Inhaling 10-30 grams of dried maple leaves a day would probably cause even more problems than the “evil weed”. Tobacco has many beneficial properties. Just not when smoked. Sorry had to get that off my chest.

Back to my main subject, Snus Warriors. There are several fronts in the War on Tobacco Users. Our Advance Scouts have been doing the work for years with little recognition from our side and living with attacks on their livelihoods, their integrity and in some cases their bodies. They do this while asking no more than our appreciation, moral support and a round of applause now and then.

I stand today and thank those brave warriors. They held the line and will continue to hold it, while we fill in the gaps, and once our lines are strong enough, our voices loud enough we will push back the frontiers of ignorance, intolerance, and lies.

This push will require new warriors: New voices; Your voice. Yes, you, the guy in his underwear in the basement hoping none of your neighbors see you put a huge pinch of snus in your lip. Step Up, Son! We need you.

We need you to be informed of what’s coming. We need you to let your tobacco using friends know what you know. We need you to stop wasting time looking at porn on your computer and start reading up on the threats facing your chosen way of using tobacco.

We cannot continue to lose this fight. If we do tobacco use will be history. I do not want to give up tobacco. When my preferred form of tobacco use holds less threat than a fast food cheeseburger,  I see no real reason to deny myself the pleasure and other benefits I glean from tobacco.

So get out there and support our Advance Scouts. Let them know they are not alone, crying in the wilderness. Outside of my favorite starting point is Velvet Glove, Iron Fist. . Sure it’s a blog from Europe, but the same fight is happening there as here. Same tactics, same people and the same source of funding; Tobacco tax dollars.

We are all in this together. Our brothers in Europe produce my favorite tobacco products; if they go down I’ll be forced to use American tobacco again. I will not be happy about that. And almost no one wants to see Mick unhappy. It’s not pretty or safe. Think wimpy Hulk.

As I sit here writing, a pris of Phantom Blue Lös in my lip, a pinch of Toque’s wonderful Berwick Brown in my nose, a cup of hot tea beside me, my children not coughing or gagging from smoke, I realize the true benefits of non smoked tobacco.

I see the fight ahead; I predict we will win. IF you all join in and get involved, get informed and help carry the fight to the enemy. Our brave Scouts cannot win this alone. Nor are we few in the first wave enough. It will take as many millions of ex smokers as we can muster. Only then will the dark forces of ASH and CFTK run in terror from our truth.


Snus Master


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