The Associated Press has a story that says new research has shown polluted air to be a more serious cause of cancer than second-hand cigarette smoke.

When I saw this, I wondered why it makes a difference, and I'm still wondering about it. Because they're both bad in my book.

I guess on one hand, breathing polluted air is something an individual can't do anything about, other than to wear a mask or go somewhere else.

But I'm not sure that's always an option, and in the end people everywhere are at risk with polluted air.

Now, cigarette smoke is a different deal.  You can choose not to smoke, and your breathing will be easier, although second-hand smoke can still be around.

And it's unmistakable when you run into a smoker. There's nothing like meeting someone in the grocery store aisle who reeks of cigarettes.

So to me, polluted air and second-hand smoke are both bad, kind of a "Hobson's choice." It's really no choice at all.