Archive for Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Senators join calls for smoking ban

January 9, 2008


State legislators seek smoking ban

Five state senators announced today they would make a smoking ban a top priority in the upcoming legislative session. Enlarge video

— A ban on smoking in public places got some added firepower Wednesday as five Republican state senators announced they would make it a top priority in the upcoming legislative session.

"Perhaps the single most effective thing we could do to improve the health of many Kansans and to reduce the cost of chronic disease is to eliminate secondhand smoke and to discourage smoking in general," said Sen. Roger Reitz, of Manhattan, who is a physician.

"We have an opportunity to significantly improve the health of Kansans and reduce the cost of everyone's health insurance and monetary pressure on Medicaid," he said.

Reitz and Sens. David Wysong, of Mission Hills, Pete Brungart, of Salina, Jim Barnett, of Emporia, and Vickie Schmidt, of Topeka, said they would push for the ban in the session that starts Monday.

Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, a Democrat, also supports a smoking ban, noting that nearly half of the state's population is already affected by smoking bans.

The city of Lawrence has banned smoking in nearly all indoor workplaces for more than three years. The city ordinance was challenged and ruled constitutional in June by the Kansas Supreme Court.

Health expenditures related to tobacco use cost the state Medicaid program $196 million per year, according to the Tobacco Free Kansas coalition.

The smoking ban was one of 21 recommendations from the Kansas Health Policy Authority.

Another one would increase the tax on a pack of cigarettes by 50 cents.

Lawmakers, however, have not warmed up to that idea.


Flap Doodle 10 years, 5 months ago

snap writes:

still having a wonderful internet life.

KS 10 years, 5 months ago

If the State of Kansas wants to ban smoking, etc. that is okay with me, but they should just go one step further and just make cigarettes illegal. The State of Kansas can then stop taking the tax revenue. The State is a hypocrite on this one This is just like car pooling. The state does NOT want you to do it. They rely too heavily on gas tax revenue . The same is true on tobacco. This is a bunch of crap. I am not a smoker either. What is going to be next? A ban on soda pop? Too much of it is pretty unhealthy. Good grief. There are more important things for those folks in Topeka to spend their time and our tax dollars on.

lunacydetector 10 years, 5 months ago

does this mean these republicans are Republicans In Name Only (RINO)? i thought republicans got all their money from big tobacco, or is that a passe' assumption?

why didn't the state take all that tobacco settlement money and spend it on smoking cessation programs instead of whatever they did with it? what did they do with all that tobacco money anyway?

lunacydetector 10 years, 5 months ago

the state should ban high fructose corn syrup and make the soda pop industry go back to beet juice like they used to use. you see, the human body can break down beet juice but has a difficult time breaking down high fructose corn syrup which is cheaper to mass produce. that ingredient is the real culprit in causing obesity, or at least it sounds like a good excuse to me.

there should be a class action lawsuit against all the soda pop manufacturers who use high fructose corn syrup. i bet money there are studies about how bad it is for you.

bulldawgs 10 years, 5 months ago

Actually, all of you who have asked for a ban on sodas and HFCS....that has already happened.

The soda manufacturers have been told that they cannot sell regular sugary sodas in places of K-12 education...this ban is currently being phased in...

Thank you for considering the public health ramifications.

SettingTheRecordStraight 10 years, 5 months ago

What right does government have to tell a private business that it may not allowing smoking? This is a horrible intrusion of government into the lives of its citizens.

And don't get me wrong - I am not a smoker, and I absolutely detest cigarette smoke. I just don't want government telling us what we can and can't do.

The solution? If you don't like the smoke, don't work at or patronize the establishments that allow it.

mmiller 10 years, 5 months ago

About your comments regarding high fructose corn syrup - I don't think you can necessarily attribute the obesity epidemic to HFCS. Have you people ever thought about the fact that Americans can't eat food(s) in moderation??!!!! I use to be overweight (not obese). I weighed about 260 lbs. I lost 90 lbs using weight watchers. It taught me how to eat smaller, more sensible portions. It also taught me to eat healthier foods. I've kept the weight off for almost 7 years now! I still eat foods containing HFCS and have not gained a pound. Hello!!! The key is to eat in moderation!!!! Americans over eat!!!! Instead of eating 2 or 3 bowls of ice cream - how about eating the recommended serving size??!!! Oh ya, and we don't exercise!!!! As far as the smoking ban - I'm all for it!!

Ceallach 10 years, 5 months ago

Kansas will not be alone, other states have already enacted state-wide smoking bans.

blackwalnut 10 years, 5 months ago

I enjoy the smoke-free establishments in Lawrence, but keep it local, please.

The state should not impose this on everyone. Let the local governments decide.

storm 10 years, 5 months ago

I agree with lunacydetector. We found out what happened to the Desert Storm soldiers with the mysterious disease - it was the fake sugar in the soda pop which was stored at high tempertures. 1984 was the year the soda companies switched sugars to the detrimental fake sugars. They need to go back, people drinking even moderately are getting fat. To me, it's no different than tabacco companies putting in excess nicotine to addict their customers. Agree with the cigs ban and go after the smoker litter-bugs, too.

SettingTheRecordStraight 10 years, 5 months ago

You who support a government ban are using arguments that could one day allow government to control many more aspects of our lives. Think about the civil liberties abrogations before you make broad statements about harmful substances (which surround all of us every day), personal convenience, or preferences.

Moderateguy 10 years, 5 months ago

Ah yes, another "film noir" inspired photograph of a poor persecuted smoker on the front page. Please LJW. Just once, can you show a photo of someone with end stage COPD on oxygen lying in a hospital bed? I know the smoke is sexy in a photograph and all, but shouldn't the story be about the ugly truth instead of a romantic marketing photo for the tobacco industry?

SpiritTat 10 years, 5 months ago

KS - I love your post!!

yet Moderateguy - your point is right on too!!

i love my cigarettes right now ~ but can't wait to be free of them again either (went 6 years without smoking.. and had only smoked a total of 3 years before that.) ok.. sorry - trying to appease my guilt here

while i appreciate when i can have a coffee, drink or dessert w/my smoke, i also great appreciate when my child doesn't have to succumb to a bunch of other smoke..

oscillating is one of my fav (unbeknownst to me just a few years ago) pastimes..

but really I think ya both make viable points. Thank you.

(now I'll go grab a smoke outside and think about it all:.)

texburgh 10 years, 5 months ago

Let's set a few things straight:

First, sugary sodas are not banned from K-12 schools - they are limited. The beverage industry must provide other beverages that don't have the same negative health consequences.

Secondly, a ban on indoor smoking in places of business (not your homes) does not suggest a ban on transfats, or twinkies, or soda pop, or greasy burgers. There is a fundamental difference. You can eat all the unhealthy foods you want and there is no negative impact on me sitting at the next table. I don't ingest transfats by sitting next to you. You harm only yourself.

But when you smoke at the table next to mine I am forced to ingest a portion of your harmful cigarette smoke. Your decision to smoke puts my health at risk and the health of workers in the bar or restaurant or the next cubicle.

It makes perfect sense to ban indoor smoking in public places.

Finally, a statewide ban would be preferable to a municipality by municipality ban. It removes the complaining about "our customers who will flee to Topeka" argument and levels the playing field for business. A number of states have already done this with no negative consequences. Further if countries like France, Ireland, Italy, and Germany all of whom have greater percentages of smokers than the US can do this, why can't Kansas?

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

texburgh I don't really have any problem with anything you said other than this:

"But when you smoke at the table next to mine I am forced to ingest a portion of your harmful cigarette smoke."

No one is "forced" to go into any restaurant or bar that allows smoking and no one is "forced" to stay seated next to someone who is smoking...

Meatwad 10 years, 5 months ago

Texburgh, these people have heard those arguments forever. You will never get through to them. They just will complain and complain. They are still complaining that people can't smoke on an airplane and in the supermarket. There are a small number of these loud complainers. I don't even read their posts. Why even bother. They don't EVER say anything new anyway. I doubt the state will pass one right now. Usually anytime that a state can pass off something like this to local governments, they will. I admire the few senators for trying though! And I hope that the ones that will prevent it from passing get bitten in the rear when they are up for re-election, because of it. Probably not likely, but I think they'll lose a few votes from people who really care about this issue. Kansas is too far behind (generally speaking) as a whole, but little by little, the more forward thinking cities will pass it and then the small ones will catch up. That's how I see it happening. You can see what level of intelligence we are dealing with when people clearly don't understand the diffrence between cigarette smoke and eating junk food. They have had it explained to them over 1000 times and they still don't get it. They never will. Most of the people who respond to these people, you won't see on here anymore. They've given up talking to these people. So don't get frustrated. I say who cares if smokers have to smoke outside. In fact, many of my friends who SMOKE also don't care if they smoke outside.

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

DirtyLinen This really is an approach worthy of consideration:

"Here's a thought : institute a statewide ban, but include the following provision. A certain number of establishments, say 20% of them (about the percentage of the population who smokes), can get an additional license, at additional expense, to allow smoking. Then the non-smokers who complain they have no place to go will have 80% of the establishments smoke-free, and smokers will still have some options where they can relax too. "

This would still leave the occupational exposure issue unresolved but that could be taken care of through ventilation, filtration and monitoring...

SettingTheRecordStraight 10 years, 5 months ago


You have yet to fully grasp the major themes of my posts. I consistently call for less government, lower taxes, fewer regulations and more rights for the individual (including the unborn). A smoking ban removes rights from private business. It also removes rights from patrons. It grows our oppressive nanny state, and it leads every human being to believe that they are too dumb to make decisions about where the work and eat.

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

Agnostick We could just allow the markets to decide the entire issue...

I'm definitely for allowing the markets to decide the issue of abortion...

janeyb 10 years, 5 months ago

"Five Republican state senators announced they would make it a top priority in the upcoming legislative session."

"As far as smoking bans go, they are just another manifestation of big government and its intrusion into our lies as well as clearly indiciative of the control freaks of the Looney Left::"

Someone doesn't know left from right.

This year's legislature will have no no money for new programs--probably not even for old programs. A statewide smoking ban will cost nothing. There is a good chance this will pass and I'm all for it.

If you want to blame someone for a statewide smoking ban, blame the dude who took it too the Kansas Supeme Court. It was kind of a gray area until then.

temperance 10 years, 5 months ago

lunacydetector: "does this mean these republicans are Republicans In Name Only (RINO)? i thought republicans got all their money from big tobacco, or is that a passe' assumption?"

And I thought Republicans were liberty-loving and opposed government intervention into the affairs of autonomous individuals. Isn't this evidence of the Nanny State I've been warned against for all these years? What's next? They're going to tell me I can't dance naked in public?

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

DirtyLinen I don't believe, that as of yet OSHA has restrictions and or permissible exposure limits for cigarette smoke but of course if OSHA does get involved it doesn't make any difference whether an employee accepts an unsafe condition or not... an employer is still not allowed to expose someone... and, at least in theory, OSHA could cite a business for exposing employees to heavy cigarette smoke under the "General Duty Clause", which is: "Each employer shall furnish to each of his (sic) employees employment and a place of employment which are free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his employees."

but... a business may meet this requirement by providing ventilation, filtration and monitoring...

Meatwad 10 years, 5 months ago

I'm a non smoker, love the smoking ban, and I think Dirty Linen's idea would be great! I don't see it happening, but I'd vote for it.

Meatwad 10 years, 5 months ago

If someone wants to do away with any and all health and safetly regulations, meaning you can't complain when you come down with salmonella and botulism after eating at a restuarant since they will have no laws that govern their practices, you can't complain if you are at a concert and the venue catches on fire and you can't get out because there are no fire exits, then you can complain about smoking bans. (Don't forget that 100 people lost their lives because of a fire at at Great White concert in Rhode Island. I'll bet their families would favor having health and safety laws. So think about that, you who don't want businesses to have to comply with any laws. I hope you enjoy your plane trip full of smoke too and cigarette butts all over the floor of Dillons and Hyvee.)

Meatwad 10 years, 5 months ago

I'll take Dirty Linen's suggestion about having a ratio of smoking bars one step further....Let's have a few restaurants and bars who don't have to have anyone telling them how to run their business. Then you few complainers can go there inhale lovely clouds of cigarette smoke while you eat your salmonella and botulism tainted food, while hoping none of the smokers accidentally start a fire.

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

logicsound04 The reason that the market lead to more bars and restaurants that allowed smoking than what the percentage of the population of smokers would have maybe called for was that non-smokers, including many who now claim that the smoke was making them sick and or killing them were willing to go into the smoky bars and restaurants... and if they were willing to "risk their health and lives" to be in restaurants and bars owners saw no reason to go "non-smoking"...

Non-smokers who didn't want to be around smoke could have solved the market problem themselves by refusing to go to restaurants and bars that allowed smoking... but that didn't happen and it was because it was important enough to enough of them:

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

Meatwad Actually... the market should take care of the food poisoning issue... unless there are really that many people who would risk eating some place that is known for tainted food...

Fire exits are another thing: most people don't ever think about them until they need them:

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

DirtyLinen I see your point and I agree that if someone is a smoker there can't be much of any added risk in him working in a smoky bar... but OSHA would not see it that way... Just because some guy might run a chainsaw at home without wearing any protection doesn't mean that OSHA would allow his employer to allow him to not wear protection while running one on the job...

JSpizias 10 years, 5 months ago

The KC Star recently ran a long article and an editorial about a smoking ban study in Indiana that claimed a 70% reduction in heart attacks. The comments below recently appeared regarding this study. The Rest of the Story: "To be blunt, this study is crappy and its conclusions are completely invalid. This study would never have passed scrutiny with me had I been asked to review it. In fact, the results of the study fail to support the paper's conclusion."

I have read the paper and I agree totally that the data presented does not support the conclusions. Moreover, the above study was published in such an insignificant journal that it is not even available to KU Med faculty researchers. Were these comments made by a tobacco company supporter? Hardly, they were made by Michael Siegel, a leading tobacco control researcher at Boston University who is deeply concerned at the distortion, outright lies and false claims being made about secondhand smoke. He has an MD from Yale and an MPH from Berkeley.

Siegel feels the activities of the tobacco control movement are destroying the credibility of public health research, destructive to science, and as one who has been involved in health related research for several decades, I agree strongly. He has just formed a new web site to try and educate the public about what is happening. Here is the description of the site. I would urge readers to take a look. "In order to restore the movement, the Center for Public Accountability in Tobacco Control hopes to highlight the tactics currently being used, bringing these tactics to public attention in order to hold public health groups accountable to their primary constituency: the public. The Center for Public Accountability in Tobacco Control was founded by Dr. Michael Siegel, a physician with 21 years of experience in tobacco control who recently became disillusioned by the direction in which the anti-smoking movement is going. He has published numerous peer-reviewed scientific papers on the health effects of secondhand smoke, cigarette advertising, and evaluation of tobacco control policies, which have appeared in journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, the Journal of Marketing, and the American Journal of Public Health. He has testified in 7 tobacco control cases, including the Engle case which resulted in a $145 billion verdict against the tobacco companies. He has testified in support of smoke-free workplaces at over 100 local and state hearings throughout the country."
Siegel's detailed comments and reasons for his conclusions about the Indiana study are at: New Study Concluding that Heart Attacks in Monroe County (Indiana) Nonsmokers Fell by 70% After Smoking Ban is Latest Junk Science Claim

texburgh 10 years, 5 months ago

On allowing separate ventilated smoking rooms - This is an appropriate concept if you are regulating based on non-smokers who just don't like smoke. If you are regulating based on public health, it is patently unfair to the servers who must work that room. Their health is harmed, health insurance and care costs increase for them. Oh, I know, "they don't have to work there! No one's forcing them!" You're right. No one's forcing them to work so they can eat and pay rent and shop at our stores.

On the continuing whine "well, non-smokers don't have to go where smoking is allowed" - the silliest of arguments. We know how that works. This allows non-smokers to either subject themselves to a health risk or limit their dining experience to McDonald's. Again this is an issue of limiting options for a large majority of citizens because a few believe they have the inalienable right to pass along their harmful habits to everyone.

Frankly, the complaining seems to be contrary to what my experience is in Lawrence. While smokers certainly might and probably do feel inconvenienced, they still frequent our bars and restaurants and respect the smoking ban. If you look at the history of the Lawrence ban, the first casualty was not among the bars who feared a catastrophic drop in revenue - it was the non-smoking bar at 9th and Iowa. Suddenly non-smokers could go everywhere.

The Hereford House complained that they had to close due to the ban. I guess it was just coincidental that the Longhorn opened at the same time selling the same quality of steaks at lower prices with sidedishes that were good and superior service. It was competition killed the Hereford House.

A statewide ban is the best solution. It levels the playing field for all businesses and protects the health of all Kansans.

I'm tired of hearing that the government shouldn't have an interest in the health of all Kansans. Use the logic of the anti-ban people and ...

Why should the government stop me from having a few beers while driving? Why should the government keep me from taking my dog into a restaurant? Why should the government require restaurant owners to have two cutting boards - one for meat and another for vegetables?

I could go on and on.

JSpizias 10 years, 5 months ago

How long until we have a movement for a constitutional equivalent of the 18th amendment regarding smoking? And will the problem of obesity be cast by our "public health" experts in the same mould as smoking? Did we as a nation learn nothing from the experience with prohibition?

From an interview with Siegel. Submitted by WaldemarIngdahl on Mon, 11/26/2007 - 23:29. Michael Siegel is a Professor of Social & Behavioral Sciences at Boston University School of Public Health. He is co-author of a book, entitled Marketing Public Health: Strategies to Promote Social Change and was named a maverick anti-smoking activist by Jacob Sullum at Reason Magazine. We wanted to get to know more about his views, than we have read on his blog The Rest of the Story so Waldemar Ingdahl asked him some questions on tobacco control policy and harm reduction. What is coming up in the near future? ........ WI: What developments in tobacco control policies do you see forthcoming in the next five years?

MS: I think there is going to be an expansion of the scope of smoking bans. We are going to see proposals to ban smoking in almost all outdoor locations, including streets, sidewalks, and parking lots. We are also going to see more smoking bans in cars. We will also see the first wave of smoking bans in the private home. There will be further promotion of employment discrimination policies against smokers and housing discrimination policies against smokers. Some group within the tobacco control movement needs to develop the integrity and courage to stand apart from their colleagues and start questioning the justification for smoker discrimination. This is a role that I have been playing, largely through my tobacco policy blog. It looks like I'll have my work cut out for me for the next five years.

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

texburgh I suppose you could go on and... we all could... but could you just take a moment to clarify that you were never forced to enter an establishment that allows smoking? In an earlier post you had suggested that you had been forced: And, if you don't mind: could you speak to the issue of how many non-smokers who claim that second-hand smoke in restaurants and bars was making the sick and or killing them still chose to go into those establishments?

beatrice 10 years, 5 months ago

Marion: "A recent compilation of businesses which have closed due to causes directly attributable to smoking bans ..."

I'm sure some businesses also had to close when child labor laws went into effect, or restraunts have been shut down for not meeting health standards. So should we not have child labor laws or health standards?

And certainly many want to blame the smoking ban when it is nothing more than poorly run businesses in the first place. If it weren't for the ban, it would be blaming drunk driving laws for bars that close. But then, I'm sure you know better than most the various excuses businesses use when the go into bankruptcy, and the owners never want to blame themselves.

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

beatrice Your line of reasoning would seem to lead to a point where you would be okay with the government putting a ban on unhealthy food and alcohol... and other less than healthy and or safe activities...

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

Agnostick If your talking about the same amounts of those chemicals as what is found in cigarette smoke I'd have absolutely no problem with it... I'd just think you were pretty silly...

by the way... do you have any information on what the parts per million of those chemicals would be in cigarette smoke? and if any of them exceed EPA or OSHA limits?

texburgh 10 years, 5 months ago


Of course non-smokers went into those establishments. I did along with many many more. We were, in essence, forced to choose between a quality food experience (despite the smoke) and smoke free (something that did not exist in Lawrence with the exception of two bars and, I think, one restaurant prior to the ban. I am leaving out of this post references to fast food many if not all of which were smoke free prior the ban.

I recognize that restaurants had non-smoking sections and I always asked for them. But are those sections truly non-smoking. One example is Free State Brewery. It had two non-smoking sections. One, the "beer garden room" could certainly be called non-smoking as it is separated by a narrow hallway from the smoking area. The other was the second story in the front which is open to the lower bar area and, as you know, smoke rises. You might more reasonbly call that section "semi-smoking." And turn-about is fair play. No one forces smokers to go to bars and restaurants or indoor workplaces now. But a lot of them do. If a smoker does not wish to sit through a meal or a few beers without a cigarette, he/she can stay home. Under the ban, smokers are forced to stay home or hold off on smoking. Without the ban, non-smokers are forced to confine themselves to fast food, stay home, or suck in second hand smoke. It works both ways.

I admit that due to the severe asthma of one member of my family, I did have to stop frequenting several particularly bad establishments whenever she was with me.

The fact is that a large majority of citizens (the non-smokers) must either limit their lifestyle choices or accept exposure to a habit that harms not only the smoker but those exposed to second hand smoke.

I do not attack the right to smoke any more than I attack the right to drink alcohol. But we accept that government makes rules to protect the lives of others. Just as a ban on drinking and driving is a law designed to protect us from people who have no particular regard for their own lives, a ban on smoking in enclosed places is designed for the very same reason.

I also believe that along with a ban, government (and non-smokers) should advocate for practices that give smokers comfortable places to gather as well. While not perfect, open areas (covered with partial walls and adequate heating) can provide options for smokers for most of the year and every effort should be made to be sure that they can be created. And before you rant, I realize that there are times of the year when that just doesn't work.

texburgh 10 years, 5 months ago


Your response to Beatrice: "Your line of reasoning would seem to lead to a point where you would be okay with the government putting a ban on unhealthy food and alcohol: and other less than healthy and or safe activities:"

Far from it. Unhealthy food and alcohol consumption harms only the consumer; not someone at the next table. It is only when one's consumption of something harms others who choose not to consume it that the government steps in. You can drink but you can't drink and drive. You can smoke but not where you expose non-smokers to second hand smoke. You can eat all the twinkies you want. Nobody cares (except for your spouse or significant other).

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

Agnostick I'm talking about parts per millions by the time the smoke has mixed with the abient air and is breathed in... and of course that would be an average in a bar or restaurant and there would be hot spots... Do you have any kind of numbers on that?

stuckinthemiddle 10 years, 5 months ago

texburgh it's the offering of the unhealthy food and alcohol that hurts others...

like offering people a place were smoking is allowed...

people choose....

texburgh 10 years, 5 months ago


You are absolutely right with this statement.:

"it's the offering of the unhealthy food and alcohol that hurts others:

like offering people a place were smoking is allowed:"

But where it breaks down is the issue of prohibition. I do not advocate prohibition of alcohol or tobacco or unhealthy foods. As you put it, "people choose..."

People do not choose to be killed by drunk drivers so we have laws. People do not choose to fall ill via second hand smoke so we have a ban.

Erin Parmelee 10 years, 5 months ago

I do not attack the right to smoke any more than I attack the right to drink alcohol. But we accept that government makes rules to protect the lives of others. Just as a ban on drinking and driving is a law designed to protect us from people who have no particular regard for their own lives, a ban on smoking in enclosed places is designed for the very same reason.

A brilliant point.

beatrice 10 years, 5 months ago

stuck, to clarify, the government shouldn't ban unhealthy foods -- just hazardous food. It also must protect against forced action. A restaurant (for a business example) can't legally serve food beyond its expiration date, and a restaurant can't force its employees to drink alcohol. In the same manner, a restaurant can't force its clients and employees to breath unhealthy air.

Would you object if a business was closed because it refused to fix a faulty air conditioning unit that was pumping hazardous material into the air? Using your line of reasoning, there shouldn't be any limits on anything a business wants to do.

So I go back to my old standby line of wanting to have a restaurant that allows customers to bring fireworks indoors and shoot them off at random. It would be an old wooden place. Sure, several people may die from second hand fire, but there are risks for everything.

And if you don't like my driving drunk, then stay off the roads. It is your choice to stay home, isn't it?

buffbonzai 10 years, 5 months ago

DirtyLinen (Anonymous) says: texburgh (Anonymous) says:

"You're right. No one's forcing them to work so they can eat and pay rent and shop at our stores."

Oh, right. I can't eat or pay my bills unless I have that job at that restaurant. Think you just won your own award for "the silliest of arguments."

Have you tried to find work in this town? You can't afford to be picky about which establishment you want to work at when you're broke and competing against a flood of other college students. There aren't a whole lot of decent jobs outside the food industry here and folks with bills, rent, kids, cars, tuition, desires to eat food and wear clothing aren't going to turn down a paying job even if they have to work in clouds of smoke for 8 or more hours a day.

Silly isn't it?

texburgh 10 years, 5 months ago

I finally see dirty linen's point: There should be no government interference in anything regardless of the harm that might be done to others.

Serving expired food that was kept for days at an unsafe temperature? You could choose not to eat it. OSHA? You could choose to work only in safe places. Drunk drivers? You could choose to stay off the roads. Clouds of second hand smoke? You could choose to stay home.

I thank the Lord every day that I don't live in dirty linen's non-regulatory paradise. I choose to live in a society that considers the health and safety of its citizens above even the interests of "the marketplace."

I know Marion and dirty linen and a few others will call me a commie or a socialist. Feel free fellas, your logic has only confirmed my position on this.

Thank you agnostick, beatrice, and a few others. There's hope.

Erin Parmelee 10 years, 5 months ago

DirtyLinen (Anonymous) says:

Gee, I think I finally see burgh's point : even though he and people like him have choices, they want the right to impose those choices on others, and think the government should back them up by banning behaviors they don't like.

Whine all you want, this has nothing to do with your health. For all you're righteousness, nobody is telling you to either live with the smoke or stay home. You have non-smoking options, and especially in Lawrence, they are hardly limited to McDonald's. What you want is to take away everyone else's ability to have the same right to choose that you demand.

Tell me, oh great burgh, around whom the universe revolves : how often do you eat out in Edgerton? How about Hiawatha? Marysville, Ulysses, Sterling, Norton, etc.? Just exactly how is it affecting your health, how is it interfering in any way with your rights if they choose to allow smoking in their own bars and restaurants?

You're a real piece of work, burgh.

I'm just curious. Why do you feel the need to get so arrogant and condescending when people don't agree with you? Where exactly does that kind of hostility come from? Really. It's just a forum you know.....

Erin Parmelee 10 years, 5 months ago

Gee, podgey, how nice to hear from you. I responded in kind to burgh's post, you know, the one just above mine. I notice you have no problem with arrogance and condescencion when it comes from those who agree with you. But then, for you and burgh, that's what this is all about, isn't it? Acceptable behavior includes only that which is agreeable to you, right?

So, no answer then?

Meatwad 10 years, 5 months ago

I know few college kids who didn't have to work. I had to work and, like the vast majority of my peers, I worked in a restaurant/bar and I breathed smoke. Endless smoke. I came home stinking every night. I knew no better. It's just the way it was. Just like when you'd fly on an airplane, you came off the plane stinking of smoke. I came off the plane coughing. But it never occurred to me it could be any other way, until it was. Parents of the current KU students are fortunate that THEIR kids are the first generation here who don't have a breathe smoke on their jobs. Too bad for kids in other cities.

Erin Parmelee 10 years, 5 months ago

DirtyLinen (Anonymous) says:

HodgePodge (Erin Parmelee) says:

"So, no answer then?"

Oh gee, Podgey, but I did answer : sorry you couldn't understand it : maybe one of your children is home and can explain it to you?

Well, maybe the kiddies are in bed. As I said, sweetie, I responded in kind. Now I know you didn't notice the arrogance and condescencion of the post that I was replying to : that poster agrees with your point of view, so of course you wouldn't find fault with his words. But as I've told you before, oddly enough related to this very same issue, I have no tolerance for those who think they have the right to impose their beliefs as to proper behavior on others, pretending to have the moral high ground and to be fighting the noble fight for peoples' health, when in reality all they're doing is whining because they're not getting things the way they want them.

You know : people like you, Podgey.

So what about you, sweetie : as usual, nothing intelligent to say about why you think a ban is justified, so instead you concentrate on critiquing others' posts? So surprised.

DL, I don't know what your problem is. It would probably take a psychologist to answer that question. I just wondered why you're so nasty all the time. That's all. I have never done or said anything to you, yet you act like a superior ahole in almost every post you make. I asked the question specific to you, because your tone is not limited to your posts in this thread. It's apparent in everything you write. Just trying to get to the bottom of your issue. I guess since you can't answer a simple question (reminder, that was: "why does a simple internet forum have the power to make you so angry?"), I won't hold my breath. Your continued attitude has provided the answer I suspected all along: You're apparently inept and impotent in your real life, so you try and act dominant in your internet life. I hope that's fulfilling for you. It just seems sad to me.

Erin Parmelee 10 years, 5 months ago

I'll let the public decide on that. Whether you think so or not, my posts don't consistently spew vitrol the way yours do. I know you think you were making a point by doing a search of my posts, but I think you missed the mark. Unlike you, I do not post anonymously, therefore, I stand behind everything I have ever posted.

Interestingly, I notice of all your quotes above, only ONE was a statement made to you. Your research skills need a little brushing up.

So, are you going to answer the question or what? I know, you're really clever at trying to avoid answering questions by posing questions of your own, or misdirecting the thread, but I'm genuinely curious......

Erin Parmelee 10 years, 5 months ago

Poor sour man. I hope you find some happiness. I really's just, sad......

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