Archive for Saturday, January 16, 2010

Double standard

January 16, 2010


Although the Kansas Senate passed two versions of a statewide smoking ban last year, some critics have come up with a legitimate complaint about the Senate plans.

During his State of the State address on Monday, Gov. Mark Parkinson urged passage of a statewide ban on smoking in public places. He emphasized that he wanted a “real” ban, not a ban “watered down” with so many exemptions that it had little impact on the state.

Later in the week, Senate Majority Leader Derek Schmidt noted the fact that the Senate had passed two smoking-ban bills and continued to be in favor of such a measure. However, the Senate’s supposed resolve was deflated somewhat by critics who pointed out that both Senate-passed bills exempted state-owned casinos.

It’s a valid point. If the state is willing to make bar and restaurant owners across Kansas absorb whatever economic impact results from a smoking ban, why shouldn’t the state be willing to accept those consequences in its own casino facilities?

Exempting state-owned casinos seems to confirm that legislators think a smoking ban will be a significant economic hit for businesses, a hit that apparently outweighs the health benefits from such a measure.

During his Monday speech, Parkinson challenged legislators by pointing out that 24 other states had public smoking bans and that even North Carolina, the nation’s top tobacco-producing state, had succeeded in passing a public smoking ban.

He’s right that, if North Carolina can approve a “real” public smoking ban, Kansas ought to be able to do the same. However, to pass such a measure, legislators need show they believe in such a plan enough to give up their double standard and make state-owned casinos subject to the same restrictions they want to put on bars and restaurants across the state.


kansasmutt 8 years, 4 months ago

You think the state is broke now, just wait and see what it does if a real smoking ban is passed. Kansas is towards the top of the list on the top 20 poorest states. Pass a real smoking ban and we will be at the top spot and be the most broke state in the nation. Kansas leaders need to wake up and remember this, Kansas has no reason for anyone to come here , and if you take smoking away, it will become a ghost state very fast. Too bad the silver spoon leaders don’t know the real world. As a business owner , i have seen nothing to help a business in this state for many years, just kicks and beat downs for all businesses. I see a bleak future for all us trying to build our business and hire people. Every week i read more and more ideas this state has to make it (so called better) and we are looking now to move out of kansas. The future of business in kansas is not real bright.

snowbird 8 years, 4 months ago

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notajayhawk 8 years, 4 months ago

"Exempting state-owned casinos seems to confirm that legislators think a smoking ban will be a significant economic hit for businesses, a hit that apparently outweighs the health benefits from such a measure."

Duh. Ya' think?

If the sole concern was health, there'd be a ban on selling cigarettes. Instead, the state is increasing the tax on cigarettes yet again, meaning they need people to quit smoking in order to keep the revenues flowing in.

Richard Heckler 8 years, 4 months ago

As long as the alcohol is being poured all will be swell have no fear. Alcohol rules.

monkeyhawk 8 years, 4 months ago

"The Congressional Research Service (CRS) said, "Admittedly, it is unusual to return to a study after the fact, lower the required significance level, and declare its results to be supportive rather than unsupportive of the effect one's theory suggests should be present." The CRS was being kind. This kind of doctoring of research results would get a graduate student expelled from a university.

The public policy debate on smoking has been settled through bogus science. My question is, how willing are we to allow bogus science to be used in the pursuit of other public policy agendas, such as restrictions on economic growth, in the name of fighting global warming?"

das 8 years, 4 months ago

none2 said: "If you truly wish to compromise, simply switch to chewing tobacco or sniff it like in the good old days."

Nah...They should just choose tobacco suppositories. The Tobacco Industry already has them in the right position anyway and the rest of us will be none the wiser.

gccs14r 8 years, 4 months ago

It's long past time to have a nationwide ban on the cultivation, distribution, sale, and use of tobacco. I'll take a statewide ban in the meantime, though, even if it means my taxes go up.

saoirseglen 8 years, 4 months ago

It does not surprise me that a historically temperanced, teetotaler, and legislated dry state in so many parts would have so many people wanting to ban things left and right.

I am not a smoker, but I also believe someone should be able to make a choice with their body even if it is not a healthy one. I can only live for myself and try to live as healthy a lifestyle as I can. I am not perfect, but I try to get healthier. I don't want someone legislating their morality on me and I do not wish to do the same to another.

Ban it, prohibit it, make it illegal. You just drive it underground and give a reason for people to get into the market to satisfy the need, particularly those who are less than savory.

Tell me again, how successful was Prohibition?

saoirseglen 8 years, 4 months ago

There is little difference. Telling people that they effectively cannot do something in any public or quasi-public place is pretty much banning what one can do. It stops just short of controlling what one can do in their private vehicle or home. Then again, this is Kansas. I am certain they will get around to that soon enough.

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