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Would you support a nationwide smoking ban?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on September 27, 2009

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Photo of Katie Foster

“Yes, I would because I’m actually allergic to smoke and people die from it. It’s bad.”

Photo of Mike Besler

“Yes, I think it’s disrespectful to others because it endangers their health. I’ve had family members die from smoke.”

Photo of Cody Snook

“Yes, I would. I smoke, but I don’t like to go to a public place and smell it around me and come out smelling like an ashtray.”

Photo of Kourtney Pierre

“Yes, I would because when you go in public places, it’s not very healthy to have everyone smoking around you, especially if you don’t smoke or are pregnant.”

Comments

M. Lindeman 5 years, 2 months ago

Well I guess we will no longer be the land of the free.

John Hamm 5 years, 2 months ago

rdragon - this hasn't been "the land of the free" for quite a while.

Randall Barnes 5 years, 2 months ago

I AGREE FREEDOM OF CHOICE....THERE ARE PLENTY OF PLACES TO GO. IF YOU DONT WANT TO BREATHE THE SMOKE THEN GO SOMEWHERE THAT OFFERSW NON SMOKING STAY OUT OF THE BARS...BESIDES HOW MANY OF THE PEOPLE COMPLAINING OF THE SECOND HAND SMOKE ACTUALLY GO TO A BAR MORE THAN ONCE A MONTH AND SPEND MORE THAN A COUPLE HOURS ????????? AND THAT SMALL AMOUNT OF SMOKE IS NOT GOING TO HURT YOU.REMEMBER THIS IS AMERICA THE FREEDON OF CHOICE SO YOU DONT LIKE THE SMOKE THEN CHOOSE TO DO SOMETHING ELSE ISN'T THAT GREAT

Randall Barnes 5 years, 2 months ago

THE CITY WONDERES WHY THE TAX DOLLARS WENT DOWN AFTER THE SMOKING BAN. BUT ALCOHOL SALES AT LIQUOR STORES WENT UP.WELL A FRIEND HAS A BAR SET UP IN HIS BASEMENT.SO I GO THERE BUY MY BEER TAX FREE...AND SMOKE WHERE NO ONE COMPLAINS

jonas_opines 5 years, 2 months ago

Q: Why not just make it illegal then? A: No tax revenue. /suck it up smokers, you're the last minority demographic that it's okay to crap on over and over again.
//still glad I quit

KS 5 years, 2 months ago

If I were the executives of the tobacco companies, I would just tell the Governors of say, California, New York, Florida and maybe Illinois that if my product is so bad for us, we will just take it off the market in your states.

generalsn 5 years, 2 months ago

Just a reminder of the sources of the bans, the RWJ Foundation, owned by big pharma, and the coalitions, more concerned with "social change" than the bans themselves:

http://www.rwjf.org/pr/product.jsp?ia=143&id=14912

And what the 99 million dollars was going to. Note on page seven the "inside -out", provision going for patios later, AFTER business owners spend thousands of dollars to build them to accommodate their smoking customers, clearly showing that the tobacco control activists have ABSOLUTLY NO CONCERN about local issues or businesses.

http://www.no-smoke.org/pdf/CIA_Fundamentals.pdf

Here's the "model ban" from page eight that many communities copied, printed, and passed. It's the "smoking ban for dummies" It only takes a few minutes to fill in the blanks naming your community, the administrators names, and blanks to customize it to your community according to the width of your sidewalks.

http://www.no-smoke.org/document.php?id=229

jonas_opines 5 years, 2 months ago

"If I were the executives of the tobacco companies, I would just tell the Governors of say, California, New York, Florida and maybe Illinois that if my product is so bad for us, we will just take it off the market in your states."

They've just taken the marketING out of the states. Plenty of other places where people still smoke. Some of them, like Japan, have significantly higher life-expectancies than the US.

M. Lindeman 5 years, 2 months ago

OonlyBonly (Anonymous) says…

rdragon - this hasn't been “the land of the free” for quite a while.

rdragon writes: I can't disagree with you, we have allowed a good chuck of our freedom to be taken away. I believe all of us (smokers and non-smokers) need to start standing up and stop the further erotion of what is left. Please think about this, you may not smoke but what is next? Your soda, candy, wine, beer? They are already going after soda and your big macs, just because you may not smoking you should still stand up for the freedoms of the ones who do.

mom_of_three 5 years, 2 months ago

No, I would not support a nationwide smoking ban.
What would be next - get rid of alcohol, because it can kill you, too. OH wait, they tried that before, and it didn't work.

mom_of_three 5 years, 2 months ago

I am more senstive to smoke during heavy allergy season, but I try not to be anywhere where it could be blown in my face.

Mike Wagner 5 years, 2 months ago

Freedom doesn't mean your free to stink up a public place so people that can't stand smoke have to just deal with it or go somewhere else! If you want to smoke inside go home! On the other hand I do think that a bar (that doesn't serve food) should be able to decide if they want to be smoke free building or not and post it on the entrance, then nonsmokers can decide rather or not to enter. What (most) smokers don't get is that you stink, as in smell bad! like an ashtray. Clean smokers never smoke inside anyway, especially in a car with the windows up, wow!!! I'm all about keeping my feedom, but let's use some common sense here...

EarthaKitt 5 years, 2 months ago

Why is it when you all talk about smoking bans it's always the non-smokers who should have to make the choice to go somewhere else? Sheesh guys, you may enjoy throwing knives in bars and restaurants too, but public health has got to outweigh comforts of the minority. Your rights end at my nose.

tomatogrower 5 years, 2 months ago

And you may like to drive your car fast, but safety of others is considered when setting speed limits. Freedom doesn't mean lack of responsibility.

Stuart Evans 5 years, 2 months ago

why would we ban cigarette smoking? it only kills nearly half a million people every year in the US alone. America only bans things that have never killed anyone. That's right. Not one single case has ever been identified where consuming marijuana was the cause of death. compare that to the fun of alcohol, cigarettes and prescription drugs. All of which, not only kill, but that fact is fully advertised and regulated. Lets continue to call marijuana the devils weed, while we quickly kill ourselves with all the legal alternatives.

mmm government hypocrisy.

tomatogrower 5 years, 2 months ago

mom_of_three (Anonymous) says… No, I would not support a nationwide smoking ban. What would be next - get rid of alcohol, because it can kill you, too. OH wait, they tried that before, and it didn't work.

But you aren't just allowed to drink anywhere, and it's highly regulated. Businesses have to have licenses to sell it. If you went to a restaurant to binge drink they would throw you out. You can't walk down the street with a beer in your hand. You can't drive and drink. So this is just regulating where you can smoke. It's not telling you that you can't smoke.

jumpin_catfish 5 years, 2 months ago

So when all of that smoking tax revenue dries up where does the government get money to continue is oppression of the people? Oh, from the taxpayers who didn't smoke to begin with. How about a nationwide drinking ban! Thousands of people die every year either directly of indirectly from the use and abuse of alcohol. Probation didn't work and won't work again. I am totally with businesses banning smoking on THEIR property but I'm getting really sick of all this creeping government control. Nationwide smoking ban, fines for not signing up for government healthcare and back door cap and trade energy taxes, sounds like 1984 getting closer and closer people!

Stuart Evans 5 years, 2 months ago

what year was alcohol probation catfish? lol

jonas_opines 5 years, 2 months ago

"I'm all about keeping my feedom, but let's use some common sense here…"

Bans rarely have room in them for common sense. A ban with a nationwide scope, exponentially less chance for common sense.

mickeyrat 5 years, 2 months ago

It is amazing how otherwise rational people can lose their marbles over the subject of smoking in public places.

Imagine the possibility: some bars and restaurants choose to ban smoking, and others allow it. Smokers can choose the former if they forgo a cigarette, non-smokers can choose the latter if they don't mind smelling like smoke.

Tough concept.

sherbert 5 years, 2 months ago

If it's legal, it should be up to the business owner as to whether they allow it or not. Period.

snoozey 5 years, 2 months ago

Just ban cigarettes and the rest will follow..

Mary Darst 5 years, 2 months ago

No, and I should not even have to give a reason why. We talked about this numerous times.

tomatogrower 5 years, 2 months ago

No one is telling you that you can't smoke. You just can't share your smoke with others. Restaurants and bars have built patios just for smokers, so there is no reason to not go to a bar. I would agree that people can open up private clubs where smoking is allowed, as long as it wasn't next to another business. Build a club in the country. Smokers might come, but there are a lot of people who wouldn't.

notajayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

bigmike (Anonymous) says…

"Freedom doesn't mean your free to stink up a public place so people that can't stand smoke have to just deal with it or go somewhere else! If you want to smoke inside go home!"

You're right, bigmike. And, as I'm a newly converted vegetarian, I can't stand the smell of burning meat. So if you want to eat a steak, please stay at home.


EarthaKitt (Anonymous) says…

"Your rights end at my nose."

And yet for some reason you have the right to tell me what I can or can't do?


Pywacket (Anonymous) says…

"Your right to shoot a gun is limited to places where you're unlikely to hit a bystander."

And yet we have shooting ranges.

"Your right to drive your car however you please is limited by the rights of others on the road."

And yet we have racetracks and dragstrips.

We have places where people who want to shoot guns, drive fast, and indulge in all kinds of activities can go. Would you claim the right to stroll around the Kansas Speedway and say the cars have to slow down because it's endangering your health? Would you claim the right to set up a picnic on a shooting range and ban guns because you might get hit? Would you attend an outdoor concert and say the volume is damaging to your ears and force the musicians to tone it down?

Why shouldn't there be a number of places that smokers can go? If 15% of your population smokes, what's wrong with there being 15% of the liquor licenses issued allowing smoking? Why is it that you think you shouldn't be inconvenienced, that everywhere should cater to you?

We have places where they allow erotic dancing - don't bring the kids there. We have places where they have loud music - don't go there if you don't like noise. As you said yourself, "This is nothing new and not unfair."

Flap Doodle 5 years, 2 months ago

Let ciggies stay legal, but require smokers to turn in 40 butts in order to buy another pack of cigarettes. Every six months, raise the number of butts required by 5. It'd be amusing to see smokers scrabbling to pick up butts instead of thoughtlessly dropping them on the ground.

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

sherbert: "If it's legal, it should be up to the business owner as to whether they allow it or not."

There are differences between laws that govern us at home and those that govern businesses. It also isn't illegal for you, at your home, to store rotten meat on top of fresh meat, if you so choose. So should we allow restaurants to do this too? Should we allow all businesses to have the same exact level of relaxed laws we have at home? Heck, you can make your own child do choirs around the house from dusk till dawn, so I guess businesses should be allowed to hire children to work in their factories for 12 hours a day too. It is their decision, right?

lg40: "when trying to understand a liberal's thought processes, just think of any spoilt brat of a kid. Their world begins and ends with themselves."

So to heck with liberals, I'm going to smoke where and when I want and I don't care who I might give cancer! Yep, nice way to demonstrate that it isn't all about you.

nota, if the "smell" from your steak could give others cancer, then yes, I would say you should cook it at home. It doesn't, however, so your argument is asinine.

Likewise, at shooting ranges, are you allowed to point and shoot in any random direction you choose, even where others are standing? Are you allowed to show up drunk and start shooting? Aren't there rules that regulate these shooting ranges?

Now, if you could control where the smoke from your cigs went, then you might be making a valid point. However, you aren't because the smoke isn't limited to where you might point it. It is endangering the health of others, including employees.

At racetracks where you are allowed to drive faster than on public streets, aren't their other safety regulations? Don't drivers need a certain level of precautionary gear and equipment? Think of clean air as an appropriate equivalent for worker safety.

Finally, since when did land of the free mean free to spread carcinogens through the air in indoor spaces thus endangering the lives of others? If I want to run an indoors fireworks bar and grill, should it be allowed? Sure, some people might die from second hand fire, but hey, it is their choice, right?

Yes on the nationwide ban, the sooner the better.

notajayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

beatrice (Anonymous) says…

"nota, if the “smell” from your steak could give others cancer, then yes, I would say you should cook it at home. It doesn't, however, so your argument is asinine."

Perhaps, dearie, you could point out anything in the post I was replying to that mentioned health concerns? bigmike complained specifically about the smell, which was what I was specifically responding to. But thanks for your asinine - and, as usual, completely clueless - interjection.

But as long as you brought it up:

http://www.webmd.com/cancer/news/20050131/grilled-meat-added-to-list-of-cancer-causes

"Grilled Meat Added to List of Cancer Causes"

http://www.curetoday.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/article.show/id/2/article_id/1138

"Another grilling-related carcinogen is polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which form when fat drips off the meat into the flame or heating element and smoke generates."

"Now, if you could control where the smoke from your cigs went, then you might be making a valid point."

Pretty sure it's not going to threaten the people outside the building where I'm smoking, dearie. As a matter of fact, I have less control over where the smoke goes outside than I do inside.

The point, since you are evidently incapable of grasping it, dearie, is that we have certain places set aside where people can go to indulge in actitivites that might be hazardous, such as racing, discharging firearms, etc. The question posed was about a nation-wide ban - shouldn't there also be a nationwide ban on driving over 70 mph, on discharging firearms, on loud music, etc., even if in a separated, dedicated location? After all, one of the whiny, entitled people like you that want to tell everyone else how they should live might want to go there some day, too.

You haven't tried to answer the question I posed earlier, bea, dearie. If a certain percentage of the population smokes, why shouldn't there be a similar percentage of establishments that allow smoking? Oh, forgot - because you think you have some right to go everywhere and have everyone else follow your rules.


Multidisciplinary (Anonymous) says…

"Noooooooo"

Relax, Ronda, I was only kidding. I eat meat, I drink alcohol, I even occasionally drive over the speed limit and on rare occasions discharge a few rounds. And I will continue to fight for my right to do so, and also to smoke, regardless of how the looney libs of Larryville whine about it.

Satirical 5 years, 2 months ago

After the government takes over health care, this will be next. Because then the argument will be: smokers are costing our country too much money, and we really care about the health of our citizens (i.e. the government knows what is best for its citizens and needs to protect them from themselves).

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

nota, since you ignore health concerns with your "smell" comments, the rest of us are supposed to as well? Um, no.

"Oh, forgot - because you think you have some right to go everywhere and have everyone else follow your rules."

If it means not getting cancer from your stupid actions, then yep, that is what I think. My rules say you can't do something in a public setting that will possibly give me cancer. What a shocker. Do anything you want to yourself, go right ahead, but if your smoking can kill me, then you are absolutely correct, I don't want you doing it anywhere where I have a right to be.

To your racing and shooting range analogies that I've already shot down, I'll just add that there actually are still places where people can go to smoke. These places are called their "homes." Smoke 'em if ya got 'em -- in your own home. And if your children grow up and develop lung cancer and die a premature and horrible death because of your selfish actions, well, then you will only have yourself to blame. However, others will stand up to your desire to inflict such a thing on their children. Dearie.

ralphralph 5 years, 2 months ago

I hate smoking, but I don't favor a "nationwide ban" on anything except "nationwide bans". It's a bleeping republic, folks. There are good reasons for that fact.

Bossa_Nova 5 years, 2 months ago

i like what beatrice is saying. totally agree.

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

So Pilgrim2, do you believe in any workplace safety standards of any kind? If not, fine. I just don't agree at all and feel that most don't either. Should we do away with health inspections of restaurants as well? If enough people get sick from eating at a restaurant enough times, word will get out -- right? Why bother with forcing restaurants to adhere to certain health standards? Is that it?

In other industries, why bother requiring construction workers to wear hard-hats or safety harnesses when working in high places. It should all be up to the business owners to decide what precautions they will provide and up to the workers to determine the risks involved ... you know, because jobs are so easy to come by that people can just quit one and instantly find another ... and they never have to worry about things like getting health insurance at their new job even though they developed early signs of lung cancer while waiting tables at their last job. Something like that? Is that really the world you want to live in?

notajayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

So let's look at bea dearie's 'arguments':

When someone brings up smell, and someone else addresses the smell argument, it was really supposed to be about health.

When someone brings up hazards to the public in a nightclub and someone else addresses that, it was really supposed to be about employee workplace safety.

Brilliant as always, dearie - if you can't win an argument, change what it was about.

You labeled my response to another poster's specific issue as 'asimine' - because YOU decided he should have been talking about something else. You claim you 'shot down' the point about having places set aside, because your poor little head can't understand what the point was. And to think I used to give you credit for being a little less buffoonish than the average Larryville loon. And when you make comments like "My rules say you can't do something in a public setting that will possibly give me cancer," one might wonder why it's okay for there to be loud music that damages my hearing? Why aren't those employees given hearing protection, bea? Oh, forgot the liberal mantra - "But ... but ... but that's different." After all, it's only the things YOU object to that should be banned, right, dearie?

Are you saying the only place people should be able to drive their cars or discharge firearms is in their living rooms, dearie? Last time I checked Kansas Speedway and Heartland Park are public places. There are also public shooting ranges, and public venues where the noise level is injurious to hearing. Most people understand that when they decide to participate in the activities or festivities in such a place that there will be risks involved. Too bad you don't have the sense that most people have.

"because jobs are so easy to come by that people can just quit one and instantly find another"

bea dearie's socialist colors shining through - everybody is somehow 'owed' not just a job, but one they like. What an entitled whiner you are.

tomatogrower 5 years, 2 months ago

Where is it written that you have the right to smoke? Can people also have sex in public? urinate in public? go naked in public? If you have a right to smoke in public, which many people find disgusting, then why don't people have the right to do the above things? Smokers are such addicts. Is it ok for other addicts to do their drugs in public? Wouldn't you love to take your kids to a restaurant and sit next to someone shooting up? Addiction is addiction. If you want to be so dependent on nicotine, then at least do it in the privacy of your own home.

notajayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

Agnostick (Anonymous) says…

"notajayhawk is another good example of the “pro-prenatal-life” movement. Blow up clinics and shoot doctors to “save the babies,” but once that baby is outta the birth canal, “You're on your own, little one!”"

Perhaps our esteemed agnoschtick could point out anywhere I've advocated any such thing? Or perhaps even where I've opposed abortion? What? You mean you're just talking out of your a**? You and bea make such a good team.

Randall Barnes 5 years, 2 months ago

I DONT GO TO A REASTURAUNT AND SMOKE NO..... BUT AT A BAR YES AND IF YOU DONT LIKE THE SMOKE GO TO ABE AND JAKES WHICH WAS A NON SMOKING EVEN BEFORE THE BAN.... AND SHORT EXPOSURE TO SECOND HAND SMOKE IS NOT GOING TO HURT ANYONE...... LISTEN CAREFULY TO THIS.. FREEDOM OF CHOICE YOU DONT LIKE THE SMOKE GO SOMEWHERE ELSE....... I AM A NON SMOKER I DONT SMOKE..... AND IF YOU DONT LIKE WHERE YOU LIVE YOU HAVE THE CHOICE MOVE. YOU DONT LIKE WHATS ON T.V. CHANGE THE CHANNEL.. SEE WHERE IM COMING FROM ? IF NOT THEN GET A LIFE...SORRY BUT THATS THE TRUTH

notajayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

Multidisciplinary (Anonymous) says…

"Who you callin' Ronda?"

Sorry, was also in the middle of something on another thread that involved Ronda, I don't know why I'd get you two confused. Must be the backyard connection.

"you're just so , uh..'touchy' lately"

As the saying goes, I do not suffer fools lightly. And they have been in no short supply lately.

Richard Heckler 5 years, 2 months ago

Nationwide smoking ban such that Lawrence has? Absolutely Bring it on!

The title suggests a nationwide smoking ban..... which would likely cut the cost of medical insurance. You know the med insurance industry would love an outright ban.

And the auto insurance industry as well. Drivers are smoking,cell phone talking,doing make up, reading newspapers, texting and drinking. How many more distractions are possible?

slang4d 5 years, 2 months ago

Quit smoking and personally find it pretty gross now but I am a "vapor" who uses a personal vaporizer or e-cigarette (a terrible term given they contain NO tobacco and don't release smoke). I hope that with all of these bans and high taxes, the FDA and American public will realize there are safer alternatives and allow them to be provided at a low cost in a variety of places. It would be nice to get my tools and nicotine liquid from a gas station instead of the internet. So, yes, how about a complete ban on all tobacco products and smoking in public and we embrace tobacco alternatives that can be safely used in public without harming with second-hand smoke? Everyone wins!

notajayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

merrill (Anonymous) says…

"The title suggests a nationwide smoking ban….. which would likely cut the cost of medical insurance."

And merrill pipes in, just to make the point that Satirical predicted in his 6:41 post.

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

pilgrim, I've made an adult decision. That adult decision is that others aren't allowed to attempt to kill me with second-hand smoke.

nota: "Are you saying the only place people should be able to drive their cars or discharge firearms is in their living rooms, dearie?"

No, not even close.

Is that really the best you can come back with for a response, an absolutely ridiculous question about driving in your living room? Talk about lame.

What I am advocating is that you and addicts like you should not be allowed to take part in your drug habit in any indoor space where I have a right to be. Kill yourself with smoke, kill your loved ones with your smoke if you must, just don't kill me or mine. Pretty easy, dear, dear, simple boy.

And calling me a "socialist" because I don't want to participate through second-hand smoke with your loser, junkie habits? Gee, um good one there ... addict.

notajayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

beatrice (Anonymous) says…

"What I am advocating is that you and addicts like you should not be allowed to take part in your drug habit in any indoor space where I have a right to be. Kill yourself with smoke, kill your loved ones with your smoke if you must, just don't kill me or mine. Pretty easy, dear, dear, simple boy."

I guess everything has to be that simple to you, dearie. That's about all your limited intelligence seems able to handle.

And just where did you obtain the 'right' to go anywhere, bea? At least, on your terms? You have the right to take your car to the track and race it - not to tell the other drivers to slow down because of your delicate condition. You have the right to go to a nightclub - not to tell the band to turn down the volume because your aged hearing is already damaged. You even have the right to go to a restaurant that serves steaks - but not to tell them to turn off the grill because the smoke is a known carcinogen. See, bea, most adults know better than to go someplace where other people are doing things they don't like. Too bad you were last in line and late when they were handing out the common sense.

"And calling me a “socialist” because I don't want to participate through second-hand smoke with your loser, junkie habits? Gee, um good one there … addict."

Nice try, sweetums. Unfortunately, my post is still there for people to read. But then, changing the argument when you have no answer is what you've been doing all day, isn't it?

My socialist comment had nothing to do with second hand smoke, dearie. I suggested on the other thread you get a third grader to explain the posts you don't understand (unfortunately that seems to be all of them), a shame you didn't take my advice. It was in response to your expressed belief that somehow people are owed jobs, in working conditions they find acceptable. Your pathetic attempt at misdirection either means you are incredibly stupid or outright lying - but then again, the two are not mutually exclusive.

If being a dried-up old prune that thinks they have the right to run everyone else's life - like you - is the alternative, dearie, thanks, I'd prefer being an addict.

ivalueamerica 5 years, 2 months ago

I would love the freedom not be forced to breath in your smoke.

Free at last, free at last.

gccs14r 5 years, 2 months ago

Tobacco should be illegal to grow, sell, possess, or consume, period. Until we get to that point, its use should be restricted to certified addicts in special clinics that have air scrubbers to keep their waste smoke from entering the atmosphere. Until the clinics are built, smokers should have to smoke in their homes with the windows closed. Oh, and until then, if you smoke in your car, keep those windows rolled up, too. I'm tired of having to shut off my climate control because you've got your window down, blowing smoke out on the roadway.

Bill Lee 5 years, 2 months ago

The majority of Americans do not smoke, and most do not like being around those who do. Businesses that choose to cater to a manority of potential customers limit their potential profits. Freedoms usually come with some restrictions. If you choose to smoke, you are free to do so, but please do it away from me.

Satirical 5 years, 2 months ago

Agnostick… “folks like Pilgrim and Satirical, will load their plates up, heaping, over the sides, with “freedom”… but they'll dare not even take a sprinkling of personal responsibility.”

Do you even know what my stance is on this issue? Obviously not. My argument that if ObamaCare comes to fruition, this will be next is entirely foreseeable. If you forget, it is conservatism that believes in personal responsibility.

I think both sides have compelling arguments with two competing interests; personal liberty on one side, and health and safety on another. I think the more compelling argument is health and safety, in regards to smoking in the workplace. People that work in mines shouldn’t be forced to either work without protective measures or given the only alternative to find another job; and similarly people who work in bars and restaurants shouldn’t be forced to do so without reasonable protective measures for their health.

Smoking unlike other things regarding personal liberty, has externalities. It affects people other than the user. Therefore, I think it is reasonable to consider everyone who is affected when discussing any potential policy. This is the same reason I think illegal narcotics should remain illegal, and drunk driving should be outlawed. It isn’t just about the individual doing it, it also about whom they affect. So, on a case by case basis, we must look at whose rights trump. Having said that, I would still be hesitant to have a universal ban on all outdoor smoking because the health problems are mitigated by being outdoors; as long as smokers are respectful to small children and people like myself who are sensitive to smoke.

Clickker 5 years, 2 months ago

Yesterday, I was behind a lady at an intersection ( K-10 bypass going into YSI). She was smoking a cigarrette with her 12ish daughter in the car sitting next to her. Thats child abuse. I literally almost called 911.

Kat Christian 5 years, 2 months ago

For crying out loud. I'm not a smoker, but I would not prehibit anyone from partaking in a cig. Not in my house or blow smoke near me of course, but to ban it nationwide is being a bit over controlling. Fat people can be a hazard, so should we ban them from restaurants? Dirty people can be a hazard, should we make them wear protective gloves and mask? Screaming babies create noise polution so should we mussle them? What next? Ration toilet paper? Ban cars during a certain hour? I do not think under our constitution we have the right to ban smoking. If this country is going to ban smoking they should ban alcohol - that is just, if not worse a hazard than smoking. It kills too in many ways. I personally believe in Freeom of choice.

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

Oh, boo hoo, notajay the nicotine addict has run out of arguments and has resorted to calling me a "dried up old prune" ... and he knows this ... well ... because he has mad powers of vision and can see me through his monitor. That hurts my feelings. boo hoo

Satirical, well stated. Better watch out, however, because notajay the addict is going to call you a "socialist" for your opinion.

Pilgrim, see Satirical's statement. I guess it is very revealing of him too, yes? Or should I say, your belief that you have the right to pollute the air others breathe is very revealing of you.

clicker, one of these days a grown child will sue and win in a case against parents who subjected him/her to cigarette smoke while growing up. Any parent who would do such a thing in this day and age when we know the effects of second hand smoke is simply repugnant.

sunshine: "If this country is going to ban smoking they should ban alcohol - that is just, if not worse a hazard than smoking."

If you drink, I don't get drunk. If you destroy your liver, that doesn't affect my liver -- extend this to include junk food and its affects. When you drink and drive, however, that is when it affects others and there are laws against that. If you smoke in an area with other people, they are forced to breathe in that air, hence laws limiting when and where someone can smoke. It is about workplace safety, at the very least. Smoke away and drink as much as you want in your own home, however. That is fine with me.

abw2102 5 years, 2 months ago

I've met a lot of people, particularly in their 20s and 30s who call themselves "social smokers" - those who only smoke when they drink, and particularly in bars. In my opinion, "social smoking" makes absolutely no sense, but seems to be pretty common. A ban on smoking in bars and/or restaurants could dramatically reduce that behavior, and perhaps help prevent it from becoming a full-blown addiction for some people.

Corey Keizer 5 years, 2 months ago

What ever happened to "Do whatever you want in your own home so long as it doesn't harm others"? What's so wrong with that? Then you can smoke whatever you want in your house.

Kat Christian 5 years, 2 months ago

I can attest to one thing about smokers - something to think about. There isn't one adult I knew growing up (including my mother) who , by the age of 70 (if not sooner) were tied to an oxygen tube due to enphazima (sp? sorry) from smoking for so many years when they were younger. Something to think about.

remember_username 5 years, 2 months ago

Define "Nationwide Smoking Ban". Does this mean "Nationwide Public Ban"? Then yes, absolutely.

What one does on their own property is where it gets interesting.

Randall Barnes 5 years, 2 months ago

Obviously, people who smoke in public establishments also impose their smoke on others around them. Because of this, the risk of heart attack increases for those inhaling their second hand smoke.

But what about cheese fries? Don’t these deliciously fatty, salty, cholesterol increasing, heart clogging little wedges increase your risk for heart attack too?

I can argue that the urge to eat cheese fries is just as involuntary as inhaling a big waft of somebody else’s cigarette smoke.

I’m dining at restaurant X and the table next to me orders a plate of cheese fries. The aroma drifts over and I turn to see the steaming plate on their table. Aren’t I just as susceptible to this heart unfriendly influence as I am to second hand smoke? I have to order cheese fries. Fully loaded. It’s non-negotiable.

For years the public has been informed that both smoking and the inhalation of second hand smoke are public health issues. It has also come to our attention that eliminating second hand smoke through smoking bans could reduce the amount of heart attacks each year.

Does the government have the authority to ban something because of health risks and ignore other things that have the same effects?

The American Heart Association says tobacco smoke, obesity and alcohol all increase the risk of having heart disease.

As the popular smoking ban continues to expand, should we also prepare to say goodbye to vodka and cheese fries? I hope not. By ars7188

September 28, 2009

Anna Sobering

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beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

abw, a "social smoker" is what people call themselves before they become a "fulltime smoker." Like any addictive drug, lots of people, and yes, lots of younger people, think they can handle it, that they have control over the addiction. Pretty soon, however, they aren't just smoking in social situations -- or worse, they are finding extra excuses to go out and drink just so they can smoke. An addiction adding to poor life decisions, and it starts when you are young. Honestly, who starts smoking at 30 or 40?

I've seen firsthand what happens when someone dies from lung cancer. It is not pretty.

Bill Lee 5 years, 2 months ago

When I worked at the front desk of a hotel I usually didn't have to ask guests checking in if they needed a smoking or non-smoking room because I could usually smell the smokers before they even reached the desk. I wasn't able to do the same with cheeseburger or burrito eaters. Even sex addicts smell normal. Smokers are so used to how they smell, they don't realize how uncomfortable they make the rest of us. A shower will take care of body odor from perspiration, but the smell of smoke never seems to go away.

remember_username 5 years, 2 months ago

Pilgrim2 - by that same argument -

"business owner gets to choose" meaning they can choose not to serve minorities?

"employees get to choose" meaning a person would have no protection against sexual harassment in the work place?

"patrons get to choose" meaning my only compensation for a breach of medical practice is find another doctor?

We live in a "nanny state" for a good reason. Personal responsibility is great, as far as it goes. Remember that a "nanny state" has laws that protect the smoker when someone takes personally the smokers responsibility for second hand smoke.

kansasmutt 5 years, 2 months ago

What a stupid question. Who would even ask this. Nonsmokers make me puke. How abouts we ban everything that people dont like.Jesus , everytime i read this crap of anti smokers i just want to shove a cigarette in there mouth. Choice is what this nation was founded on and that is now gone.Ban bans, sounds good to me.My business will remain smoker friendly even if a ban is enacted, i own it, i pay for it, it is mine and it is my choice.Ya dont smoke, stay the F out if it bothers you...I am glad more nonsmokers die every day than do smokers. Breath up fresh are fools, your next.

Mike Wagner 5 years ago

Hey kansasmutt

I bet you and your business both smell like s**t! You are your own punishment...

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