One of the most gripping things that I saw when visiting the controversial Bodies Exhibition (in which real corpses are on display) was the real lungs of real smokers. The scientific exhibition, currently running in Washington, D.C., makes a point of showing visitors the grave dangers smoking does to our bodies by showcasing the difference between a smoker’s lungs and those of a non-smoker. Naturally the smoker’s real lung was in a dire state. It was all black and looked rigid and in extremely rough shape.
Visitors to the exhibition that are smokers are encouraged to throw away their pack of cigarettes in a glass box that has a sign above it stating: "On average a pack of cigarettes takes two hours and twenty minutes off your life. We’d like you to be around longer. Leave your cigarettes in the gallery and stop smoking now."
After I saw this, I had this sudden urge to take every smoker I know by the hand and bring them to this exhibition to show them how they are killing themselves — slowly but surely. While there, I kept thinking about my home country, Jordan, and how widespread smoking is there. Would an exhibition such as this one deter people from taking up this nasty habit? Will I live to see the day when young Jordanians find it "uncool" to smoke? Maybe. Only time will tell.