by Max Brantley
A reader thinks I would not be OK with Kinsley's laissez faire outlook. Reader presumes too much. I grew up with smokers and then had smoking in-laws. Saw them all endure unpleasant final days thanks to smoking-related illnesses. When my mother suddenly stopped lighting up, weeks before her death, I knew she was a goner. Nonetheless, I smoked for a time. Rolled my own even. Quit in 1977. Hardest thing I'd ever done, then or still.
So. I have nothing but sympathy for those who can't shake the habit. Wish they wouldn't, particularly around me and in public places that I visit. Appreciate it if Obama is trying to avoid putting the image of a smoking president before the world. I wish him the best with his Nicorette.