Friday, June 25, 2010

Crazy World News - 7 - Smoking 2 year old..

Recently I ran across a story about an Indonesian toddler, hooked on cigarettes..

Not only hooked on cigarettes, but hooked on a massive 40(!) a day.. And not only 40 cigarettes a day, but a diet that has him, at just 2 years old, weighing in at 4 stone (.. I think that's about 25 kilos!)!

My initial reaction was "how sad", followed closely after by feelings of "this is child abuse, why don't the authorities step in and do something about this!"..

2 year old smoker

But then, I thought some more, and started questioning whether or not I really thought it was right that a child in this situation should be forcibly removed from their family.. after all, that's what it would probably have to boil down to if his parents were unable or unwilling to make changes..

His father is even quoted as saying he doesn't know what the problem is as he believes his son looks healthy!!

Smoking Ardi Rizal with friends and family

Clearly there must be many people out there, (maybe even the majority?), that would agree to him being removed from his current environment, and taken into care by those that are wiser..  But I'm just not so sure..

Naturally I find the whole situation repugnant, but the truth of the matter is, if I had a child, and it became public common knowledge that I was only feeding it fruit, which would be the case, make no bones, there would most definitely be a good proportion of people out there, that would want the authorities to step in and stop me/us abusing the poor malnourished baby..

And in the, God-forbid, scenario where such a child were removed, I would be, frankly, devastated.

smoking and playing with guns

I look around and see children being abused everywhere. toddlers eating salty chips and crispy golden cheesy fat saturated chicken nuggets.. lollies, bread, ice cream, pasteurized milk saturated denatured sugar enhanced cereals and greasy chocolate soda pops, and nobody thinks to remove them to a cleaner healthier environment.. In fact, child food abuse is mainstream and pretty much everywhere you turn..

I think despite the ignorance with which this particular child is being raised, it's still quite possible that the parents and family are loving and supportive, with mutual attachment from all sides..

Which is why, I guess, when all's said and done, I would not intervene, other than through education and leading by example...

Sad smoking 2 year old

What do you think?

You can read more of this story here.



fruitarianvagabond said...

i am with you Mango....what you say makes sense to me. this was interesting to think about. miss ya man!! glad you and Kveta are well.....hope to spend much more time with you both in our long lives. hugs,D

Fruitarian Mango said...

Hi Darrick,
I'm sure we'll meet up again sooner or later in the movie..

I follow your blog too, and see you are still in the Philippines.. plans to stay there much longer? any chance you'll be back on Oz shores?


Anonymous said...

Great post Mango. Like you, I was appalled at first, but then, just sad. Education is definitely the way to go! I used to even think that the authorities should intervene for children of smoking parents (due to passive smoking risks), but I guess I've mellowed since then.

Hey, Harley says that you don't eat just fruit, is that true, and if so, what things other than fruit do you eat?


Fruitarian Mango said...

Hi Jeff,
good point about the passive smoking!

Interesting, 2nd time these past couple of weeks that someone has written to me saying Harley says I'm not fruitarian..

I sometimes get the impression that he may feel slightly threatened by the idea of an all fruit diet.. Not sure why though.

For the record, nothing but fruit has passed my lips now, since December last year when I shared the juice of one jelly coconut with a couple of friends, and finally ate one sweetleaf leaf..

Harley is right that there have been exceptions in the past.

On many occasions.

I have written this many times already, (see, among others, this blog entry) and have tried to hide nothing.. A few short years after becoming a raw food vegan convert (very early 90's - after 5 years or so as a vegan), I realised that fruit was the ideal food, and although I was not always in the right place, or even frame of mind, to pull it off, (excuses, excuses!) I committed myself to following the path of fruitarianism.

At times I followed it pretty well., At times, not so well.. there were ups and downs, and even occasional reverting back to cooked food.. Since around 2000, I have been pretty consistently raw, and since joining up with kveta in 2006, have eaten pretty much 100% raw ripe fruit nearly every day during that time.. The only exceptions being peas, which we shared on a couple of occasions, and the very inoccasional individual leaf that was picked at. Other than the juice of the coconut I shared in December '09, the last coconut I had was in Thailand 2006..

I'm thankful to Harley for having pointed out these inconsistencies, and it is because of his influence that I decided to stop eating everything not a fruit.. So that there can be no doubts that long term pure fruitarianism (ie none of this 80% fruit stuff) is a valid healthy choice.

hope that clarifies things.. :)

Anonymous said...

Mango, Jeff here again, thank you for your response, you might be right about Harley feeling threatened. Maybe even a little jealous as he sees himself as top dawg! He also says the same about fruitarian Anne, and some dood called jerico something.
time for bed for me now.

Bernie said...

Jeff, I dont always trust what Harely says. I hve noticed that he is not always honest with his observations, and sometimes twists hte facts to suit his needs.

Fruitarian Mango said...

Hi Jeff & Bernie,
the jerico guy must be jericho sunfire, AKA Richard Blackman, he's claiming to be breatharian at the moment, and I understand Harleys skepticism about that. As for Anne, I'm sure she would be happy to give you her side of the story, her website is

Harley has his agenda, and I believe acts the way he feels is best.


Padraig said...

I agree that the child probably shouldn't be taken off the family, but I want to make a point that a line has to be drawn somewhere. For example if they were making their child a heroin addict that would definitely kill them very soon, I think the child would deserve to be saved.

I like the family's reasoning that he seems healthy to them and their skepticism over what the so-called "professionals" say. And who knows: maybe he really is reasonably healthy. Some people seem to be able to throw nearly anything at their bodies, especially in their youth, and get away with it.

Fruitarian Mango said...

Hi Padraig,
Yes.. no doubt there are situations where physical intervention is the right thing to do.. I'm just glad that it is not up to me to decide when and where the line should be drawn.

I don't see this child as healthy at all.. (too me) it looks like he is very visibly suffering from what's happening to him.. I believe his family must be delusional to think otherwise..


Fruitarian Mango said...

I just heard they had him in for rehab and has now thankfully quit the habit..

Ardi Rizal in rehab


electricmel said...

This was a brilliantly thought out point of view. I am somewhat new to your blog, Mango and I appreciate all the work you have put into spreading your experience and belief.

I like how you have put yourself in the shoes of the parents and saw the possibility of what it would be like if you had had a child taken away from you because of your beliefs. I have two children and I would have to be physically detained if anyone took them from me.

On the contrary, I do think the parents in this particular situation were being quite negligent. The crux of the discussion being his father and maother not caring about the boy's health (a.k.a. allowing him to smoke 40 cigs a day!) vs. trying to raise your child with a healthy diet (vegan, fruitarian).

And underage tobacco smoking illegal in his part of the country? I know they have a big problem with Manakchand - a kind of tobacco soaked chew that rots your gums and teeth.

Anyway - great post and thanks again for your insight!

Fruitarian Mango said...


hiya and thanks for dropping by!

I think the way I see it, is that just because I am able to see that something is unhealthy, this does not necessarily make it a fact that the parents can see it.. So, yes I agree that the kid's health was constantly under threat, I am not making a leap in assuming that the parents "don't care" about this.. (I am not trying to defend them in their actions, or also assuming that they are totally oblivious to the fact that they have put their sons life in jeopardy.. - this may be the case, but I simply don't know either way)..

I see it bizarrely enough as still a possibility that the parents are both loving and caring, but otherwise just very very ignorant..

I also wondered on the legality of the situation.. you would think that surely even in a heavy smoking country like indonesia, there would be some law forbidding the consumption of tobacco to people under a certain age..

the mind boggles..

Fruitarian Mango said...

Also a 3 year old girl in China who both smokes and drinks:

Ya Wen

.. :(