Since Tinnitus Awareness Week just wrapped up a month ago in the UK and is set for May in the US, I felt that I would give a little reflection on a question I was asked the other day.
I feel very strongly about this and want to state, publicly, that I am 100 percent against sound limits. I am against prohibition in general. What I am for is knowledge and education. I just want people to make an informed decision, something I never had when I was growing up. I thought the ringing in my ears was part and parcel of the ‘going out to gigs’ experience. Nobody told me I could permanently damage my brain.
See – that sounds bad doesn’t it? ‘Damage my ears’ doesn’t sound so bad, certainly not bad enough for the government to do anything about it. If the civil servants making these decisions were informed of the facts, that it’s brain damage we’re talking about, then perhaps we’d see less apathy and more action.
Would it not be more intelligent, more caring and responsible to use some of the money allocated to these sorts of public information campaigns for educating people with the truth about tinnitus? That they can permanently damage their brain just by walking into a pub, or a club, or a gig. Surely there must be a plaque, a sign, on display, next to the one that says ‘licensed to sell alcohol’ which reads ‘You can permanently damage your hearing if you do not protect yourself in this venue’. Is that really too much to ask? Wouldn’t a law that makes it the venue’s responsibility to supply earplugs for sale behind the bar make social and economic sense?
What are your thoughts on this?