Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Stealing our civil liberties

If you haven’t heard, Mecklenburg County Commissioners voted unanimously on Tuesday to ask the state legislature for permission to consider a ban on smoking in restaurants, bars and workplaces.

I enjoy an occasional cigar, but I don’t smoke cigarettes. Going to the smoke-free Tempo nightclub is so refreshing. Peeling off smoky clothes -- like after the night at Dixie’s on Monday -- is just disgusting.

Still, I’m against an outright legislative ban on smoking in bars and restaurants.

Currently, 38 percent of the county’s restaurants voluntarily ban smoking. Restaurant and bar owners not politicians should decide if they want to be smoke-free.

If a customer doesn’t like going to a smoky establishment, then find someplace else to eat or party.

What do you think? Post your replies below. While I appreciate your passion for this topic please remember that this is family newspaper. Chill out with all the cursing on the reply posts.

65 comments:

Anonymous said...

I virtually never agree with your posts, partly because I am one of those people that cannot stand kids with their pants around their ankles with their butts showing and partly because I don't like much of the jive-talk bullshit that you write about but on this you and I agree. I think it should be left up to the individual owner of an establishment whether they allow smoking and it should be left to the marketplace to decide whether to patronize those establishments, based upon them allowing or not allowing smoking.
Yeah, I am an old white guy that doesn't care for the backwards hat wearing-long white t-shirt-do rag-rap-crap with the loud music coming at me on the street when I can't move away from it but, hey, I still can agree that we should all be free from excessive government interference.
Now, if we can just do something about these "ganstas".........

Anonymous said...

Ban it!!! Let the smokers find somewhere else to go. A no smoking section in an establishment is like a no peeing section in a swimming pool. It doesn't work.

Anonymous said...

I moved here from a state that banned smoking. It is SO much nicer after the ban. It has nothing to do with civil liberties. Smoking affects everyone near a cigarette. How about my civil liberties to not smell your crappy stink. Let's face it, cigarettes would be illegal already if it wern't for the tax revenue. It is only a matter of time before these bans are in every state. You can't defend smoking.

Anonymous said...

Exactly. Why is it that the government doesn't want to take away the rights of school kids to carry guns and beat-up other kids, but they want to dictate whether or not adults can smoke in restaurants? Ridiculous. I hate to come home smelling like smoke, but I can choose where I go at night. Leave it up to the restaurant owners!

Special K said...

I think bar owners should decide how they want to run their businesses. That is the best way to cater to what thier customers want. That part is simple.

But by the same token, I think smoking in bars and restaurants should be discouraged. I would like to see the county sell smoking licenses to bars and restaurants. This would serve to encourage smoke-free environments. The price could be adjusted to raise or lower the number of bars and restaurants that offer smoking.

Anonymous said...

Spoken like a true tobacco loving apologist. Stealing YOUR Civil Liberties? Please! Why do smokers immediately claimed to be the aggrieved party on this issue? What about MY civil liberty, breathing clean, unpolluted air? When did YOUR right to the atmosphere become more important than mine?
In California the public areas in entire cities are smoke free, including the beaches. Unfortunately we don't realized how nice it is out there until we get back home. It’s about time we caught up with the rest of the country and gave the 89% of the people who don’t smoke their right to fresh air back.

Anonymous said...

I agree. That way, when the smoking bars start losing enough money - they'll all be nonsmoking, by their own volition.

Anonymous said...

i think your both about as wrong as wrong can be. as a person who takes their health seriously and has seen people die from complications of smoking (second-hand included) the air i breathe should be clean (not a priority in charlotte) and is where my civil liberties begin, and your cancer-stick inhaling habit ends. smoke 'em if you got 'em but not around me.

Anonymous said...

let the market decide. period.

Mista Accurate said...

I believe that all public places should be smoke-free. Many establishments wrongly believe that they will lose patrons and sales will suffer if they don't cater to smokers, while ignoring the fact that more people would probably come b/c they wouldn't have to deal w/ the smoke. Smoking in a public restaurant is not a right - they can do that at home if they so choose. The 14th Amendment prevents public facilities from discriminating against people. The person is welcome - their funky ass cigarettes aren't!

Anonymous said...

I really beleve that you work for the alcohol industry, all you ever do is try to glamorize a bunch of drunks in your articles. So your
opinion about smoking doesn't surprise me at all. I still can't believe that the observer has you on their payroll.

Anonymous said...

So let me get this straight...it is OK for us to preserve the "civil rights" of the 11% of the population to kill us all with their second hand smoke. Folks, the entire cigarette argument is nonsense. The government subsidizes farmers who grow it, taxes people who use it, and funds scientists over and over to create studies that tell us how bad tobacco is. Our medical costs are out of control, partly because of tobacco. Enough is enough - ban tobacco products EVERYWHERE.

Anonymous said...

You need to revise your understanding of civil liberties, Tonya. There is nothing in the constitution that gives you the right to smoke. More importantly, the fundamental concept of liberty has the initial constraint of not doing harm to others. Second hand smoke has been empirically proven to cause cancer and other respiratory illnesses. If anything, banning smoking in public places (which includes most bars & restaurants) in reality protects a more specific liberty, the right to life.

Your "If a customer doesn’t like going to a smoky establishment, then find someplace else to eat or party" argument is about as smug as it gets. According to your argument, if I don't want to breathe in known carcinogens while I dine or drink, I have to avoid 62% of the establishments in the state.

Additionally, even the non smoking sections of some restaurants don't help. A study reported in the very paper you work for indicates that non smoking sections have air quality that is five times worse than in those that ban smoking.

The state has a specific interest in protecting the health of its citizens. This potential law is no different.

Anonymous said...

I don't smoke, never have and never will. I hate to be closed up in a smokey room. I think smokers are despicable. However, I don't think it is the right of any government to tell a person he or she cannot enjoy a cigarette when the owner of an establishment says that it is OK. A private establishment that receives money from it's customers should have the right exclusively to deny smoking.

Some one said: "In California the public areas in entire cities are smoke free, including the beaches. Unfortunately we don't realized how nice it is out there until we get back home." And I say, "Delta Is Ready When You Are." Adios and don't let the screen door hit you in the rear.

Anonymous said...

Last time I checked, the overwhelming majority of Americans DO NOT SMOKE. Fact.

Last time I checked, the majority of people in Mecklenburg County want a ban. Fact.

Why should we cater to what a minority or plurality of people want? Last time I checked in a democracy, the majority rules. Allowing smoking in any public places is complete b.s. By allowing it, you are saying that the minority is more important than the majority. By allowing public smoking, you are saying that the "civil liberties" of the FEW are more important than the "civil liberties" of the MANY!

Smokers and smoker-supporters are OUTNUMBERED! THEY should go someplace else to breathe death. The majority wants to breathe life.

End of discussion.

Anonymous said...

Tonya you arent too worried about liberties when it come to taxes, seat belts, Soviet DWI checkpoints, etc..

Anonymous said...

I am still amazed (like the above reader) that you actually get a paycheck from the Charlotte Observer. Your blabbering is better suited to Creative Loafing, not the subscribers of the Observer.

As for your smoking opinion...Maybe in 20 years from now when you have lung cancer from "partying with your peeps" you will have a different thought.

Anonymous said...

Since when is smoking a "civil liberty"? Its not in my copy of the constitution. And BTW: I'm a smoker.

Anonymous said...

Many folks have already stated that I can choose where I eat as a nonsmoker. Believe me, I do. I seldom eat out these days unless it's to pick up something from the drive through. Otherwise I eat at home simply because I have zero interest in breathing your stink.

Why do people feel an obligation to preserve somebody's right to ruin another's meal? Perhaps I should sit down in a nice restaurant and let rip a horrendous fart at the first whiff of smoke simply to freshen up the environment. After all, mine don't stink.

techhie said...

In any other context, the polluter is the one whose actions are controlled, to protect everyone in need of a non-polluted environment. If we were talking about rivers, there would be no question that we need to restrict dumping poisons to protect our downstream drinking water.

If we were talking about pools, it would be immediately obvious that my right to swim in clean water supersedes your right to poop in it.

So please, somebody explain to me, why it should be any different when we are talking about the air we breathe???

Danbo said...

I agree. There are too many people that actually believe they haved a right to eat in a certain restaurant -- therefore they have the right to be free from cigarette smoke. No such right exists. The only right that does exist is the right of an owner to decide what they will or will not tolerate in their establishment. To those who disagree -- get over it.

John - Harrisburg said...

Tonya,
Using your reasoning, then government should not be allowed to set emissions standards for automobiles, should not be allowed to pass air quality standards for industry, should not be able to ban drunk driving, ban sexual harrasment, keep guns from convicted felons etc... etc... etc...

I remember an old saying that makes it clear. Your right to punch me in the nose, stops where my nose begins.

fed up said...

no one has ever died from second hand smoke.
Its up to the restaurant to decide whether they want smokers or not...not the business of "activists" who think they know better.
Next thing will be this transfat nonsense being tried in NYC.

Whatever happened to "the right to do with my body" mantra?

If someone smoking near me blows the smoke in my direction...or is unaware that they are bothering anyone, I politely tell them to direct the smoke elsewhere which 100% of the time they comply or go outside.
Be civil with our liberties...

Anonymous said...

This has nothing to do with civil liberties. This boils down to finance, folks. Only if all bars & restaurants are on even footing, will smoke-free establishments happen. Businesses choose to allow this public health travisty because they think people will move to the next place that still allows smoking. Private clubs would be exempt from the ban, and I bet they would crop up like mushrooms.

John - Harrisburg said...

Danbo,
The problem with your argument is that a right to a reasonably safe environment is inherent in the constitution. So yes, there is a right to be free from being exposed to hazardous materials when you patronize a business. Do you advocate doing away with sanitation laws as well? E-coli posioning anyone?

Anonymous said...

I think smokers should be able to smoke wherever they want, as long as the smoke doesn't invade my space. Maybe they could sit in little smokey enclosed tents while they eat. When what you do affects the water I drink, the air I breathe, and the food I eat then that's not a civil liberty and the government has a charge to step in and protect the public safety.

Jus' Tressie said...

i've determined that a great deal of the people who read the Observer are crazy. if these folks are my neighbors I truly fear for my safety - not from 'gangstas' as they are often referenced here, but from those who seem to be under the illusion that they get to dictate the lives of all Americans based on their preferences.

The fact is owning a business is much like owning a home - the proprietor gets to determine what transpires there. You have no right as a customer except for the right to choose NOT to be a customer.

Whether smokers are in the minority isn't the issue. They are still Americans, if they're only three of them. As such they DO have some expectation of defining "pursuit of happiness" according to their own morals.

What in the world is the big deal? How many of those concerned about second hand smoke are getting enough exercise, eating a healthy diet and taking other recommended steps to insure their health? Obesity and laziness are far greater risk factors to one's quality of life than second hand smoke.

We'd all be better if the government defined what food we could be served in a restaurant - not if they allow smoking. Again, if so few citizens are smokers how could their smoking be such a major health issue? By the very assertion that they are the minority wouldn't it seem that smokers aren't capable of contributing enough smoke into the atmosphere to be such a big danger?

Prohibition didn't much work for alcohol, why would it work for cigarettes? The reasonable thing to do is to warn the public of the dangers and then allow a free market and cultural attitudes determine the rest.

And, honestly, if I see one more person attack Tonya because she enjoys a type of music or a culture to which they don't subscribe I'm going to stop bothering to even vote - the country's apparently going to hell anyway if what I read here passes as civil public discourse.

All this and I'm not even a smoker.

rach said...

i don't think the problem with this legislation is civil liberties (whether smoking is one or not is another debate, i believe). the problem i have with this legislation is that it's the gov't forcing businesses to impose a rule against something some of their customers enjoy. i think that should be up to the business to decide, since that can determine their audience (aka customers).

but, that's because i don't like the gov't (local, state, or otherwise) poking their noses in things like this. perhaps it's a public health issue, but we've survived this long without such legislation. i have no other arguement than my personal belief that i'm paying taxes so the gov't can achieve certain order. i think banning smoking is restaurants is less important than coming up with better ways to handle crime and fixing our roads.

Anonymous said...

How about my inaliable right to clean air?? Laws should be made for the Common Good not the desires of a few.
I saw what smoking did to my Mother -- it killed her after 20 years of illness. I have no wish to suffer because someone else is stupid, yes stupid, enough to smoke.

NCEAGLE

Anonymous said...

Why do smokers get the right to pollute my lungs? I thought the county was fighting for the right to ban smoking if they so choose because currently NC law says we don't have the right to do so, if we even wanted to. If I'm wrong about that, go back to my comment above. I don't think that anybody has the right to submit my precious lungs to smoke just because "some" people have the right to light up cancer sticks. I don't go out too much in Charlotte b/c of the smoke factor. If clubs weren't allowed to have smoke then I think that I and many others would flood the venues. I think some clubs are afraid to ban smoking voluntarily, thinking they'd lose customers. I think they are wrong. If they do ban smoking, business would increase.

Anonymous said...

Why do smokers get the right to pollute my lungs? I thought the county was fighting for the right to ban smoking if they so choose because currently NC law says we don't have the right to do so, if we even wanted to. If I'm wrong about that, go back to my comment above. I don't think that anybody has the right to submit my precious lungs to smoke just because "some" people have the right to light up cancer sticks. I don't go out too much in Charlotte b/c of the smoke factor. If clubs weren't allowed to have smoke then I think that I and many others would flood the venues. I think some clubs are afraid to ban smoking voluntarily, thinking they'd lose customers. I think they are wrong. If they do ban smoking, business would increase.

Anonymous said...

I don't agree with your comments about civil liberties. When something starts affecting other peoples health then it's not an issue about civil liberties. My mother used to smoke and when they banned smoking in all public place within her city she just got fed up with it. She decided that it was not worth to go through the hassle in order to have a cigarette and just quit. I am not saying that everybody will quit with this ban, but maybe a few will. The 38% does sound like a good number and would seem to give non smoking establishments choices, but I wonder what the percentage would be if you take out all the fast food restaurants included within that list. If you just had a percentage of table service restaurants that are non smoking I suspect that the percentage would drastically lower.

Anonymous said...

If the government REALLY cared about our health, they would ban the sale of cigarettes. This is just another attempt at bigger government at displaying compassion without really doing anything about the problem.

We certainly need LESS government. Let the market decide. And let the market decide about my seatbelt use as well.

Anonymous said...

You can't fix stupid people and smoking is stupid. Legislation is the only alternative. I think the law should apply to restaurants - all restaurants. It is just gross and unclean to have toxic fumes around food. (I really think if you want to smoke you should have to do it in a plastic bubble and breathe back your own darn smoke.) Bars should be left to decide for themselves.

Anonymous said...

EAGLE and others,

Please show us all the part in the Constitution where it mentions your alleged right to "clean air".

Can't find it, can you?

You have no such right... especially not if you enter MY home or business. You DO, however, have the right to stay outside and refuse to come inside if you don't like the conditions.

Anonymous said...

If it is a “fact” that most patrons prefer not to smoke, or would rather be in a smoke free environment, then why are the bars in Charlotte always packed? Is it just the 11% of people who enjoy smoking that are coming out every Friday and Saturday night? No, its not. Quit your crying. If you don’t like it, don’t come out. Let the market decide. Additionally, the consequences of breathing second hand smoke are exaggerated. Smoking used to be allowed everywhere, and the majority of people used to do it. Bars, planes, restaurants, offices all used to filled with smoke constantly. If second hand smoke is so bad, why isn’t there more sick people today?...because its not true. The cheap perfume that most girls wear is probably more dangerous. Quit polluting deez.

Anonymous said...

Once again you amaze me with your ineptness.

Where are these smoke free establishments? Take a look at http://www.smokefreeworld.com/nc.shtml#charlotte

Here's an example, I go into Toys R' Us and start screaming obsceneties...I would never consider doing that, do you know why, because I know for a fact everyone wouldn't approve of my dropping the f' bomb. It's called having common courtesy which you lack, go outside and smoke your cigar. NYC did it, what makes Charlotte any better?

Here's a great idea...before you opine on an issue going forward please ask someone that has a brain to write your articles for you...pretty please?

Tonya Jameson said...

Along with the restaurants listed on the Web site posted by anonymous, I also know that the Evening Muse, the Neighborhood Theatre and Tempo nightclub are also smoke-free establishments.

If anyone else knows of any other clubs or restaurants that are voluntarily smoke-free please fell free to post them on this blog as well.

Anonymous said...

I love all the comments about the right to breathe clean air. Since when is the air in Charlotte, or practially anywhere else, truly clean? Should they also ban automobiles, factories, and all the other man-made devices of pollution? Where do we draw the line?

Anonymous said...

You "sheeple" who support this "ban", know absolutly nothing about individual property rights as outlined in the Constitution of the United States. Forget the fact that the "scientific evidence" regarding second-hand smoke is junk science. Do your research on this before you post something inane. And beyond that my own unscientific sudies show that smokers are a helluva lot more fun!

Anonymous said...

Restaurants and bars are not public places you friggin Nazi idiots! You do not have a "right" to a smoke-free environment unless you own the place! And for all you "majority" freaks...we live in a Constitutional Republic where a "majority" does not necessarily count...it's called "mob rule" when you want to "ban" something just because you and a "majority" don't like it. I don't like it when you bring your loud snivelling kids on an airplane, in a restaurant, etc. Let's get the government to "ban" kids in all "public" ares...they raise my blood pressure!

Anonymous said...

Allowing restaurant owners to make their own deicisions regarding smoking is not a workable solution. It might work in large cities where there will probably be a number of non-smoking restaurants available. But, in small areas like where I live, we don't have many restaurants, and every one allows smoking, and are opposed to changing. I have no other place to go.

We have health depts. to inspect restaurants proper sanitation, so why do we want to splinter off from this and let the restaurant owners decide about clean air?

Anonymous said...

What's the difference between sitting beside someone smoking and me spitting my beer in their face and clothes? Now we both smell like crap, but I have TAR in my lungs, just like them!

The owner of Penny's Place in Mint Hill went smoke-free a few months ago and had a good article in the Neighbors about it. He said he had to clean all the signs and memorabilia weekly and wipe off all this dark yellow "gook" from it with all the smoking going on in there.

BAN IT, I don't care how it gets done!

Anonymous said...

To the comment about"where are all the sick people?" there in the intensive care units that I and my collegues in health care work in. They are dieing slow miserable deaths where their bodies suffocate slowly over a period of years. They eventually spend the last weeks and months of their lives with a hole in their neck and a machine doing all the work of breathing for them. They eventually give out and die. Come check it out some time. And by the way, there are hundreds of studies showing a conclusive link between second hand smoke and an increased risk of lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and cardiovascular disease. Get your facts straight. The reason your taxes and health insurance premiums is so high is in large part due to smoking and the tremendous drain it places on the health care system.

Anonymous said...

I think this is terrible. I dont smoke but it should be left to the individual. I'm sick of govt putting their noses in everything. Local govt cant even handle what they are suppose to do and now they want to tell me how to live my life. We are slowly losing our rights. Next you wont be able to smoke in your own home, then alochol will be next. Wake up America.

Anonymous said...

I think this is terrible. I dont smoke but it should be left to the individual. I'm sick of govt putting their noses in everything. Local govt cant even handle what they are suppose to do and now they want to tell me how to live my life. We are slowly losing our rights. Next you wont be able to smoke in your own home, then alochol will be next. Wake up America.

Anonymous said...

Drinking a beer in a restaurant doesn't hurt anyone. So your argument is irrelevant.

Anonymous said...

Our rights are being chipped away at little by little. Smoking, fatty foods -- I'm an adult, let me decide for myself. I can choose to go to a smoky bar or I can choose to go to a smoke-free bar. It is MY choice, not the government's. The bar owner ought to decide what he wants for his establishment. It's his investment, not the government's.

Anonymous said...

When you are in the same immediate air space, second hand smoke causes about just as much harm as directly inhaled smoke. You're basically killing me with your lifestyle choice every time you light up next to me.

No one's hurting anyone's civil liberties. You're free to smoke -- in the privacy of your own home where you have the right to make a decision that affects just you and your family.

Just show some respect for the health of others. It's a shame we have to make a law around that.

Anonymous said...

To the anon who claims it's just "junk science".
Seems like YOU need to wake up and do some research.

Here's the deal on your precious website junkscience.com
Should be called www.everythingjunkthatspewsfromrepulicanmouths.com

Read on:
Since 1996, Junkscience.com has listed links to current articles on many environmental and public health issues, with running commentary courtesy of the "junkman," Steven Milloy.

The Advancement of Sound Science Coalition Steve Milloy defines Junk science as "bad science used by lawsuit-happy trial lawyers, the 'food police,' environmental Chicken Littles, power-drunk regulators, and unethical-to-dishonest scientists to fuel specious lawsuits, wacky social and political agendas, and the quest for personal fame and fortune." (http://www.junkscience.com/faqs.html) Junkscience.com became a project of The Advancement of Sound Science Coalition when Milloy became TASSC's executive director in March 1997. Though TASSC no longer exists as public entity (See "The Advancement of Sound ScienceCoalition for more information on the questionable status of TASSC), Milloy continues to produce Junkscience.com However, he refuses to disclose his current funding sources. For a short time, the site was sponsored by "Citizens for Integrity in Science," a group that seemed to exist entirely on paper, and whose website was registered to Milloy's home address in Potomac. Milloy denies ever having been a lobbyist. However, he shows up in 1997 federal lobbyist registration data with lobbying expenditures on his behalf, indicating his firm, the EOP Group, considered him an active lobbyist. The same federal records indicate Milloy represented the American Petroleum Institute, FMC Corp, Fort Howard, International Food Additives Council, and Monsanto. (Center for Responsive Politics, Lobbyist Database) According to the Washington Representatives, Milloy was still registered as a lobbyist with the EOP Group in 1999, with the American Petroleum Institute and FMC Corp listed as clients. (http://www.opensecrets.org/lobbyists/lobbyist.asp?ID=15971&year=1997)

Anonymous said...

"BAN IT, I don't care how it gets done!"

Typical comment from a person who obviously doesn't give a damn about the rights of others. I want what I want, when I want it, and screw you if you get in my way. Right?

You don't try to tell me how to run things in MY house and I won't do it to you.

Anonymous said...

I am a registered nurse and work directly at the bedside. Nothing is more frustrating to me than a respiratory patient who has practiced his God -given constitutional right to smoke all his life and now he can't breath... and he wants me to help him. Help him do what? Breath? Too late for that, baby.

Why any of you insist you want to be just like him is beyond me. Or maybe you think it won't happen to you. I'd be willing to bet that's what he thought too.

I grew up in a house where both of my parents smoked. I do not. Anybody who thinks his cigarettes have no effect on others needs to rethink their position. It's not viable, and neither will they be, in less time than they think.

Anonymous said...

Secondhand smoke is a public health issue. A person has the right to smoke, but that person should not have the right to affect my health.

I heard a great analogy on the radio yesterday that I think applies here ...

It is not against the law for people to drink alcohol, but it is against the law for people to drink and drive because it's a public safety issue. Secondhand smoke is a public health issue which is why the government should step in and take action.

Anonymous said...

If smokers would respect the health of others patrons and employees- not to mentions their OWN spouses and children- in public places by not smoking inside, there would be no need for bans. Sadly until a ban is passed smokers will continue to inflict their posionous addiction on others.

Anonymous said...

Wow! Maybe I agree with you....
..I am a restaurant owner and want to serve you horsemeat instead of hamburger, water-down your orange juice to save money, not make my employees wash their hands after using the restroom (might take the skin off their hands), leave my meat, cheese sitting out in the air all of the time, let my cats and dogs run through the kitchen, provide child porno upon request.

Get real, Tonya - we put a lot of restrictions on public places to protect the public...preventing second hand smoke is just, if not more dangerous, than all that I have listed above!!!!

Second-hand smoke is deadly and you know it!

Anonymous said...

Because a restaurant is a PUBLIC place, then the activity of any patrons should be such that it does not affect the health and safety of others occupying the same space. No one is banning what an individual can or can not do...as long as it does not affect the health of someone else. Does anyone remember when smoking was allowed on the plane for rows 16 and beyond but now in row 1-15? Obviously, that really made no sense, nor does allowing a smoking section is a restaurant. Another analogy is having a section of the pool where swimmers can urinate, eventually the water is all contaminated.

Anonymous said...

Hi Tonya,

Thanks for keeping the upcoming ban on smoking in all workplaces in the forefront of your blog.

I disagree with the premise that “restaurant and bar owners not politicians should decide if they want to be smoke-free.”

Restaurant and business owners are highly unlikely to go smoke free in a timely fashion. Meanwhile, the existence of secondhand smoke in any workplace is a very dangerous, deadly and insidious public health hazard. We expect our elected representatives to eliminate it.

Second hand smoke is just as deadly to smokers as nonsmokers. It doesn’t play favorites. The smoker inhales 16% of the deadly contaminants from a cigarette in mainstream smoke while secondhand smoke contains the remaining 84%.
Everyone who can smell it, including smokers is at risk.

Customers who don’t like going to a smoky establishment, are already finding other places else to eat or party. I know because I’m one of them.

Thank goodness in our free democratic society we can elect representatives who are able to make those tough decisions which are in the interest of the greater public good. We are asking them with our votes to protect our health at that of our children. If they don’t they will have to find other ways to serve the public after election time. We don’t want it left up to the selfish and uninformed decisions of a addicted minority.

The rights of the individual are often best served when his freedoms are restricted so that they don’t infringe upon the freedoms of others.

Anonymous said...

http://www.kingdomcoming.com/

Read it and WAKE up America

kistyn said...

i just returned from prague, czech republic and smoking is allowed on almost 99% of their establishments including the airport. I found the city beautiful but the smoke oppressive and disgusting. fact: smoking and inhaling 2nd hand smoke KILLS. i uphold the city's decision to ban all smoking.

aka Danny Wise said...

Hey, it took me thirty seconds to get hooked on smoking and thirty five years to give up the habit. I used to say: I'm dieing for a smoke! But really cigarettes were killing me. Go to Dublin if you want a smoke free night out. The business people who run bars and restaurants will never ban smoking while they are making money from it. In England in 1605 even King James was out voted by his politicians 'cos they were already making big tax profits from the importation of tobacco. I'm not joking, please don't smoke.

Anonymous said...

"Typical comment from a person who obviously doesn't give a damn about the rights of others. I want what I want, when I want it, and screw you if you get in my way. Right?

You don't try to tell me how to run things in MY house and I won't do it to you."

Your rights end where my lungs start!!!! And we are not talking about YOUR house (remind me to never go to dinner at your house), we are talking about a PUBLIC place...typical smoker talking about rights! Give me a break!

Anonymous said...

It should totally be up to the owner...If you have a problem w/ it then open your own place that does not allow smokin or go somewhere that does not allow it. All you whiney babies are going to be eating your words when you continue to give the gov't more and more power.

Anonymous said...

Your home and automobile are YOUR private zones, however if a restaurant is "open to the public", then it should assist in preventing the side effects of forced second hand smoke.

Anonymous said...

I am so with you on this one. I have never been a smoker, and never will be one. However, this is a right that violates everything about our freedom to choose. If you don't like the smoke, don't go to a place. If the government wants to ban something, then ban cigarettes. NOT that I would want that to happen. The point here is we have a choice. It is a wondeful thing. To let the government take away yet another choice would be a terrible mistake.

GET UP PEOPLE - AND VOTE!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Smoking in restaurants and bars? Let me see if I understand what all the fuss is about. Surely it’s not one group trying to force everyone else to think and live the same as they do. Naw…not in Charlotte. So, let’s say I decide to take a chance and spend my life savings in order to, hopefully, open a successful business and support my family. I spend thousand and thousands of dollars for a location, up fitting, furniture, supplies, help and the list goes on and on. I’ve studied the market and decide I’m going to try to attract customers to come to my place so I can sell them burgers and such. Oh, and since they are there I could also sell them drinks. Yeah, that would be great! But wait. Now there is a group who have a problem because they “know” burgers are bad and should not be sold in public places. Oh my God, what about the children? Naturally the state needs to step in and stop me from selling my killer sandwich. At least I can still sell my drinks so maybe I won’t totally lose my life savings and put my family on the street. Not so fast, there are others who know drinks are bad! Well, I suppose I could tear down the building and open a parking lot. But what about the pollution caused by the cars that park there? Quick, call the state and make everyone think and live the same. Bottom line, I am a business owner who is risking my money for my place of business and it is not a public place paid for with “your” tax dollars. My business will succeed or fail based on my choice of demographic which I cater to. If I’m not catering to your view, so sorry, you have plenty of other choices. Or better yet, risk your own future and open your own place and see how much you like being told how to run your business.