To the editor:
Lately, several letters have been published supporting a smoking ban in bars and eating establishments in Lawrence. The issue that pushes such a ban is pushed as saving us all from the evils of secondhand smoke and protecting the health of our citizens.
Hogwash. The issue is a special interest group trying to usurp the rights of the individual to choose the lifestyle they wish to pursue. No one forces any business owner to permit smoking in his establishment. No one forces anyone to work in an establishment that permits smoking. No one forces any patron to enter any establishment that allows smoking. We all can make this choice.
I do not smoke, and I have withheld my patronage of coffee houses that allow smoking because of the offensive nature of the environment inside the coffee house; but I do not relinquish my right to choose which business I patronize to the City Commission or any special interest group.
There are plenty of options for me to support or to withhold my support, without any input from the anti-smoking zealots or an overly intrusive City Commission. A citywide smoking ban is government regulation gone amok.