Your Place: The Final Frontier

Anti-tobacco crusaders boldly go into smokers' homes.

During Prohibition, making and selling liquor was illegal, but drinking it was not. With tobacco, we are moving toward the opposite situation, where it will be legal to make and sell cigarettes but not to smoke them.

A smoking ban recently approved by the city council of Belmont, California, a town halfway between San Jose and San Francisco, is so sweeping that saying where it does not apply is easier than saying where it does. Smoking will still be allowed in tobacco shops, in automobiles, in some hotel rooms, in private residences that do not share a floor or ceiling with other private residences, and on streets and sidewalks, assuming you can find a spot that is not within 20 feet of a smoke-free location.

That may be hard, since Belmont's smoke-free areas include not only buildings open to the public but outdoor locations where people wait, such as ATM lines and bus stops, or work, such as construction sites and restaurant patios. But a smoker who despairs of finding an outdoor area where smoking is allowed can still light up even if he does not own a car and is unlucky enough to live in an apartment or condominium. He just has to land a role in a theatrical production "where smoking is an integral part of the story."

Meanwhile, the Los Angeles suburb that dubbed itself "Clean Air Calabasas" when it was leading the smoke-free march into the great outdoors is considering an extension of its ordinance that would cover apartments. Even if your landlord doesn't care whether you smoke, Clean Air Calabasas does.

The official justification for these ever-more-intrusive smoking bans is that the slightest whiff of secondhand smoke poses an intolerable hazard. The Belmont ordinance claims tobacco smoke is "extremely dangerous," regardless of dose, and warns that even "exposure to outdoor secondhand smoke may present a hazard under certain conditions of wind and smoker proximity."

Predictably, the ordinance cites former Surgeon General Richard Carmona's assertion that "there is no risk-free level of secondhand smoke exposure." But this pseudoscientific leap of faith amounts to saying that every little bit hurts, even if the damage can't be measured.

Epidemiological studies generally find that adults who live with smokers for decades are slightly more likely to get lung cancer and heart disease. The difference is so small that it's hard to say whether it signifies a causal relationship. There is also evidence that very young children of smokers are more prone to earaches and lower respiratory infections.

What do these studies of prolonged, relatively intense exposure prove about a little smoke seeping under the door of your apartment or wafting your way on the street? Absolutely nothing.

But the politicians who take the misleading statements of public health officials like Carmona and run with them cannot be bothered by the facts. New York Assemblywoman Sandra Galef (D-Ossining), who wants to ban smoking on playgrounds, recently told Newsday "the scientific reports say that secondhand smoke has as much of a negative effect on your health as smoking directly."

Got that, kids? If your parents smoke, you might as well start smoking yourself; the health effects won't be any worse.

One of Galef's colleagues, Assemblyman Ivan Lafayette (D-Queens), said lighting up around children is worse than physical abuse. "They're both horrible things," Lafayette averred, "but one is going to kill the child."

As those remarks suggest, the next rationale for banning smoking in private residences may be child protection, which will allow the government to go after smokers in detached homes as well as apartments. Already several state and local jurisdictions have banned smoking in cars carrying minors.

Such laws raise the question of why legislators are ignoring the setting in which the vast majority of children's exposure to secondhand smoke occurs. Now that anti-smoking crusaders have crossed the threshold into people's homes, they are not likely to turn back.

© Copyright 2007 by Creators Syndicate Inc.

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  • ||

    So a basic Fourth Amendment right must take a back seat to the Fraud of the Century. If the courts allow this, God help us all.

  • living in hell||

    Here in santa monica they have now banned smoking outside on the 3rd street promenade. Ridiculous.

  • ||

    Testing...

  • ||

    Remember this the next time some nanny stater tells you how committed they are to science and only club carrying mouth breathing Republicans reject science. These are people who beleive that even a whiff of second hand smoke will kill you. Why don't they ban ladders while they are it lest someone walk under one and suffer bad luck as a result.

  • Ellie||

    Knoxville recently passed a wide smoking ban that allows restaurants & bars to keep smoking if they limit their patronage to 21 & up. Never mind that the legal smoking age is 18 ... it's for the children.

    The alternative newspaper ran a gushing, cock-suckingly pleased article about it, wherein they slammed anti-ban groups for using falsified studies and pseudo science, and then labeled as "a crank" and "comical" two groups who asserted anti-smoking groups do the same thing. Yes! Anti-smoking groups, those bastions of honest science and hard facts in a world of evil tobacco-sucking falsifiers!

    I fucking hate this town.

  • ||

    Actually, it's not just Knoxville. That's a TN state law banning smoking in most public places that went into effect Oct. 1.

  • ed||

    This one was easy to predict. It had all the requirements: Big gang vs. small gang, elitist busy-bodies vs. lowlife puffers, and best of all--the children. A can't-miss hit! This is one show that will never close.

  • ||

    FWIW, there is some evidence that second-hand smoke can be harmful.

  • ||

    Hey, Ellie, Knoxville is a veritable Xanadu compared to any Northeastern city. at least you can smoke at a bar!

  • Episiarch||

    The eventual invasion into private homes was glaringly obvious when they banned smoking on private property (businesses).

    If you think these people have the slightest respect for individual sovereignty or property rights you are fucking insane. Food will be (and is, in the form of trans fats) next. Alcohol will be more and more restricted, but alocohol is so important to so many people that resistance will be strong.

    The control-minded have learned the exact right pace at which to do this stuff. Just slow enough that each encroachment is annoying but people take it because they are used to it. Now that they have the pace down, it's just a question of what is next.

  • ed||

    Of course, bans such as these are going to depend a lot on the snitch factor. How willing will your neighbors be to rat you out? Will they do it secretly? Will their reward be a larger flat, a more generous bread ration, maybe a long-overdue advancement in the Party? Will children snitch on their parents in exchange for a new red scarf and a shiny pin?

  • ||

    How long before we hear about secondhand transfat? No kidding. There is some crank study out there about how fat people tend to be friends with other fat people and how of course children are adversly effected by being exposed to bad eating. Food is next.

  • Alice Pitney||

    I win.

  • ||

    Screw you Alice. I have my mayo and lard sandwiches to look forward to. Now leave me the hell alone!

  • ||

    As bad as these bans have gotten, I would almost beg the state legislature in Ohio to adopt the restrictive rule that TN has. Draconian Ohio pretty much banned in-bar smoking, age regardless. Fuck that noise.

  • x,y||

    FWIW, there is some evidence that second-hand smoke can be harmful.

    Yes. And there's also evidence that apples, raisins, and bananas can be harmful. It's the degree that counts, though.

  • Jozef||

    My cough is much worse here in Atlanta where I live alone, in a smoke-free apartment and commute to work for half an hour, than back in my parents' home which is out in the country, but where my father smokes inside the house. I'm wondering when they'll finally ban cars in Atlanta...

  • Doctor Duck||

    there is some evidence that second-hand smoke can be harmful

    Yeah? I think there's evidence that second-hand smoke can be annoying, and that's all it takes for douchebags to start screaming "LAW! Gimme a LAW!"

    I'm thinking of opening a second-hand smoke shop. Anyone want to invest?

  • JBinMO||

    "Of course, bans such as these are going to depend a lot on the snitch factor."

    After I got a ticket, I would find the most foul smelling crap, infact I might use crap, and burn it everyday around dinner time. One day for each dollar of the fine.

  • ||

    x,y,

    Anyway, I liked the discussion of this issue in the Skeptic's Dictionary.

  • ||

    Also, it is one thing to acknowledge that there is indeed evidence in favor of the notion that passive smoking can cause harm, it is another to argue that the state is the appropriate actor to weigh out the risks and benefits associated with such exposures.

  • ||

    My big question is this: when are the asbestos-style class action suits going to start to flow from former bartenders/waiters who were exposed to tobacco smoke and now, at 70 or 80 years old, have cardiovascular disease or lung cancer?

  • ||

    The 1998 WHO report showed a statistically significant decrease in the risk for lung cancer for children exposed to second hand smoke.

    Thats right, a decrease.

    If you don't believe me google it. I assure you what you find will shock you.

  • ||

    "one summer I worked at a bar in Buffalo. I didn't know it at the time, but I was exposed to dangerous second hand smoke. Now I suffer from lung cancer. But I know my family will be safe, thanks to the law offices of Levy, Phillips, and Koenigsburg."

  • ||

    Smoking is not good for us. Secondhand smoke is not good for us, therefore I don't see how anyone can be opposed to this law which will make us healthier. It is to protect Americas children from secondhand smoke, which is the worst form of child abuse there is.

  • ||

    Oh, the hand-wringing of a smoking thread.

    Well, it's time for you folks to come to terms with it: for better or for worse, our society has decided to phase out smoking. Frankly, considering the massive death toll caused by tobacco, one could argue that our government would be in neglect if it didn't do something about it.

    I will agree with most of you, however, that the second-hand smoke rationale sounds like BS for the most part. Although it's proven to be a good strategy since most non-smokers don't like smoke and are therefore more likely to go along with restrictions and bans if they're framed as "smoking hurts other people".

  • ||

    Because some people have values other than health, such as "pleasure".

    Ice cream is also unhealthy but "pleasurable" but do you think it should be illegal for adults and child abuse to give it to children?

  • ||

    We're also phasing out Marijuana, Cocaine and Heroin, and we've been phasing it out for almost a century.

  • ||

    YES! IT CONTRIBUTES TO CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE! Also, looking at ice cream can cause dangerous second-hand hunger, making someone who wasn't even thinking of having ice cream want some of that dangerous substance. The only solution is to ban it in public places and places where children congregate.

  • ||

    But what evidence exists that the dosage that children receive in open spaces has toxicological effects?

  • ||

    Because some people have values other than health, such as "pleasure".

    Those values are wrong.

    Ice cream is also unhealthy but "pleasurable" but do you think it should be illegal for adults and child abuse to give it to children?

    Perhaps. The government should ban all unhealthy things because they raise the cost of healthcare for us all, which isn't fair to the non users.

    Well, it's time for you folks to come to terms with it: for better or for worse, our society has decided to phase out smoking.

    It should just be banned, along with alcohol, illegal drugs and all over the counter drugs and unhealthy food and being fat and not getting exercise. This will minimize healthcare costs. It is our duty to the government.

  • ||

    "Because some people have values other than health, such as "pleasure".

    That is really the root of the problem. If we could just ban pleasure from society, things would be perfect. That is really what this is about. These people really fear the idea that someone out there could be happy and having an enjoyable experience instead of punishing themselves for all of their sins through denial.

  • Juanita Goldberg||

    But what evidence exists that the dosage that children receive in open spaces has toxicological effects?

    Perhaps none, but no dose is 100% healthy and beneficial.

  • Juanita Goldberg||

    These people really fear the idea that someone out there could be happy and having an enjoyable experience instead of punishing themselves for all of their sins through denial.

    Pleasure is a sin, suffering is good for the soul, we are a Christian nation and it is the responsibility of the government to enforce morality to save our souls.

  • Juanita||

    You will be rewarded in the afterlife, the bible says so so we cannot disagree. God wants us to suffer, everyone allways gets what they deserve.

  • ||

    My big question is this: when are the asbestos-style class action suits going to start to flow from former bartenders/waiters who were exposed to tobacco smoke and now, at 70 or 80 years old, have cardiovascular disease or lung cancer?

    No doubt John Edwards is on the case.

  • ||

    100% healthy and beneficial is a strange standard for what behavior is legal in public places. Under that standard, I would imagine eating an ice cream cone in front a child would not be 100% healthy and beneficial as it poses the infintesimal statistical risk of driving the child towards a life of obesity and early death.

    Other behaviors include holding hands in public which holds the slight risk of making the child want sex later in life and get AIDS.

  • ||

    That is really the root of the problem. If we could just ban pleasure from society, things would be perfect. That is really what this is about. These people really fear the idea that someone out there could be happy and having an enjoyable experience instead of punishing themselves for all of their sins through denial.

    The problem with this analysis is that many things are pleasurable yet nobody has any interest in denying us the ability to play Scrabble or shoot hoops in the driveway or take Sunday afternoon naps, etc.

    There are arguments against smoking restrictions that have some merit, but the "they just don't want us to have any fun" one is immature and lacks any factual basis to speak of.

  • ||

    I read that Skeptic's Dictionary write-up, and I think that P&T's point, along with a host of others, is that, while there does exist a causal relationship between secondhand smoke and a host of diseases, everyone who quotes this link as gospel:

    A) Usually has a nanny-state motive at hand
    B) Refuses to admit that the link is weak and
    C) Fails to recognize that it is exceptional exposure to secondhand smoke that causes risk, and not the incidental contact that most folks screech about.

    our society has decided to phase out smoking.

    Well, Dan, I hope for your sake that society does not choose to phase out trolls and stupid, rank contrarianism. Don't worry, I'll still defend you, even though you'd gladly throw me (as a smoker) under the bus.

  • ||

    "Frankly, considering the massive death toll caused by tobacco, one could argue that our government would be in neglect if it didn't do something about it."

    The unintended consequence of reduced smoking rates are;

    Less tax money for poor children health care (think of poor Kenny people)

    More old folks voting for more benefits / entitlements for themselves.

    More old folks will need treatment for old age and transfat and HFC caused diseases.

    And lastly... Sorry, nobody gets out of here alive, so we're all gonna die, might as well get used to it.

    So the basic feel good outcome will come at a significant price that is not being considered, excellent.

  • VM||

    Thanks S of S! That was an interesting write up, and your 10.36am comment was spot on!

  • ||

    I move to ban second-hand exposure to the dangerous bacteria and virii many people have on their bodies; they represent a risk to me and my theoretical children. I think you should have to undergo a full blood analysis before you leave your own home.

    You know, to minimize the risk of exposure to TEH CHILDRENS!!11!one!

  • ||

    The problem with this analysis is that many things are pleasurable yet nobody has any interest in denying us the ability to play Scrabble or shoot hoops in the driveway or take Sunday afternoon naps, etc.

    There are arguments against smoking restrictions that have some merit, but the "they just don't want us to have any fun" one is immature and lacks any factual basis to speak of.


    I call bullshit. When these assholes start coming out against power lawn mowers, coal fired electric plants, dry cleaning establishments, and oven cleaners, let me know. It's neo-puritan puritans, who think the reason for my existence is to better the state. Be a good citizen, live for your neighbors.

  • ||

    Check out the CPS studies. They were conducted with millions of people for the sample size and found no link between lung cancer and second hand smoke.

    You'll need a library clearance to get at the materials, the government doesn't like to talk about the studies but its easy enough to find them (not a conspiracy, just regulatory jackassery).

  • ||

    What a nation of pussies we've become.

  • ||

    C) Fails to recognize that it is exceptional exposure to secondhand smoke that causes risk, and not the incidental contact that most folks screech about.

    I have no problem with communities banning smoking in places of public accommodation, but the idea that it should be banned outdoors is silly. Also the idea that the state should be allowed to ban smoking on one's how is an over-reach of state power.

    Note, however, that it is second-hand smoke in the home that has the strongest evidence base for harm (with workplace being a close second).

    The point being that the appropriateness of government action in the area will depend on more than evidence of harm, but will have to balance that with issues of personal freedom.

  • ||

    "on one's how" should be "in one's home"

  • ||

    Can anybody link to a real, honest-to-god, non-politically motivated study that actually assesses the risks of smoking? I mean, I honestly have no idea. Does 1 cigarette a day represent a risk? How about 10? How about 40? At what point does smoking cross over into a true risk? Is there a threshold of some kind?

    I know that smoking carries risks, but at what sustained level do the risks honestly become a factor for most people?

    An additional point I have is that there are a number of additional factors that make me doubt "tobacco's great death toll" - perhaps it is poor people who smoke more (which is true), and being impoverished cuts years off of your life. Who is to honestly say that "tobacco" is the cause of death, rather than merely a contributor, in any death?

  • ||

    Also, smoking usually clusters with other unhealthy/risky behaviors like increased drinking, etc. So yeah, it's impossible to isolate a single variable and say exactly how it will affect lifespan and health.

  • ||

    I have no problem with communities banning smoking in places of public accommodation

    And what does that constitute? Last time I checked, just because you welcome "the public" into your bar/restaurant does not mean it suddenly ceases to become private property. This what happens when we play fast-and-loose games with terminology: bars/restaurants/businesses are not "places of public accomodation" (at least, not to the rational mind), they are places that have owners who reserve the right to toss your ass out.

    I have no issue with banning smoking on true "public property" - public property is essentially ruled by majority rules. It's the fact that "majority rules" suddenly has some play in how I run my business (that I bought with my money) that chaps my ass.

  • ||

    And what does that constitute?

    I would guess that the legal definition varies around the country.

    The US CODE title 42,12181

    (7) Public accommodation
    The following private entities are considered public accommodations for purposes of this subchapter, if the operations of such entities affect commerce-
    (A) an inn, hotel, motel, or other place of lodging, except for an establishment located within a building that contains not more than five rooms for rent or hire and that is actually occupied by the proprietor of such establishment as the residence of such proprietor;
    (B) a restaurant, bar, or other establishment serving food or drink;
    (C) a motion picture house, theater, concert hall, stadium, or other place of exhibition or entertainment;
    (D) an auditorium, convention center, lecture hall, or other place of public gathering;
    (E) a bakery, grocery store, clothing store, hardware store, shopping center, or other sales or rental establishment;
    (F) a laundromat, dry-cleaner, bank, barber shop, beauty shop, travel service, shoe repair service, funeral parlor, gas station, office of an accountant or lawyer, pharmacy, insurance office, professional office of a health care provider, hospital, or other service establishment;
    (G) a terminal, depot, or other station used for specified public transportation;
    (H) a museum, library, gallery, or other place of public display or collection;
    (I) a park, zoo, amusement park, or other place of recreation;
    (J) a nursery, elementary, secondary, undergraduate, or postgraduate private school, or other place of education;
    (K) a day care center, senior citizen center, homeless shelter, food bank, adoption agency, or other social service center establishment; and
    (L) a gymnasium, health spa, bowling alley, golf course, or other place of exercise or recreation.

  • ||

    Sorry, forgot the link

    http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/html/uscode42/usc_sec_42_00012181----000-.html

  • ||

    Last time I checked, just because you welcome "the public" into your bar/restaurant does not mean it suddenly ceases to become private property. This what happens when we play fast-and-loose games with terminology: bars/restaurants/businesses are not "places of public accomodation" (at least, not to the rational mind), they are places that have owners who reserve the right to toss your ass out.

    Businesses that are open to the public are private property in the sense that they are privately owned, but because they do accomodate the public the public has an interest the regulating what goes on there.

    One example is that you can't open a restaurant that refuses to admit black people but you could establish that sort of rule in your private residence.

    As a member of the public, I think it's a good thing that stepping into a business does not mean that suddenly it's anything goes. If you want to profit from the public, then you've got to conduct your business in a manner that the public finds acceptable.

  • ||

    OK - I know I am going for a marathon on posting on this topic, but here goes. I say, let's split the baby here and develop an honest-to-god plan that makes everybody happy:

    1) Individual business owners decide whether smoking is permitted in their business

    2) Anyone wanting to enter or work at said business signs a risk-waiver, acknowledging that there may be some second-hand smoke in the air, but they are adults and agree not to sue if they are harmed by said second-hand smoke down the line.

    Fact is, this is a reasonable course of action. It solves the problem of "being annoyed or harmed" by second-hand smoke, because you have affirmed that you waive the risks and are choosing to enter an enclosed smoking area.

    Now, front this plan to the anti-smoking zealots. If they don't find it reasonable (which they won't), that will tell you TONS about their true motives.

  • ||

    If you want to profit from the public, then you've got to conduct your business in a manner that the public finds acceptable.



    So... you just negated yourself. If you conduct your business in a manner that the public (not bureaucrats or politicians) finds unacceptable, you will go out of business. That's what self-regulation is.

  • ||

    Ayn,

    develop an honest-to-god plan that makes everybody happy:

    rotflmao

    Sorry to say, what tends to happen is a plan that makes the largest number of people happy. You get to calculate the pain of the smaller group and subtract that from the larger group's happiness to determine if the larger group's happiness is worth it, but you ain't gonna please everyone.

    Harm for indoor smoking bans in places of public accommodation?
    Pretty small.

    Harm for at home smoking bans?
    pretty huge.

    Harm for outdoor smoking bans
    somewhere in between, but big enough to make the idea stupid.

  • ||

    So... you just negated yourself. If you conduct your business in a manner that the public (not bureaucrats or politicians) finds unacceptable, you will go out of business. That's what self-regulation is.

    That's not true at all - plenty of businesses have been profitable while conducting themselves in an illegal/unethicial manner.

    In fact, a major reason we have business regulations is to determine which companies are conducting themselves in such a manner, because it's not always obvious to customers.

  • ||

    Well, Dan, I was talking about this specific business sector i.e. retail/dining/drinking establishments choosing what they will allow within the walls of their business. If the issue of smoking at bars was really about customer service, the state and local governments wouldn't need to make a law about it.

    It's really about making smoking socially unacceptable. But whatever.

  • ||

    It's really about making smoking socially unacceptable. But whatever.

    No, I agree that's what its about. I'm just questioning if that's such a bad thing.

  • ed||

    the idea that it should be banned outdoors is silly

    Not too long ago it was firmly in the realm of satire. The prohibitionists cried foul at those exaggerated predictions. "No one is talking about banning outdoor smoking," they said, rolling their eyes. Yuks all around. Silly alarmists!

  • ||

    In fact, a major reason we have business regulations is to determine which companies are conducting themselves in such a manner, because it's not always obvious to customers.

    Yep, I've never been able to determine if a business establishment allows smoking. Since the issue being discussed is smoking and second hand smokes effects, what the hell is your point?

  • ||

    Slightly off-topic: there's a great song by Bob Gibson (words actually by Shel Silverstein) called 'Still gonna die'. I tried to find the lyrics online but failed. You can listen to a bit of it at Amazon's listing for his record, Making a Mess. The following lines are representative:

    You can quit smokin but you're still gonna die
    Quit tokin and cokin but you're still gonna die
    Eliminate everything fatty and fried
    And you get real healthy but you're still gonna die.
    Quit booze and coos--you're still gonna die
    Wear Birkenstock shoes--you're still gonna die...

  • ||

    Yep, I've never been able to determine if a business establishment allows smoking. Since the issue being discussed is smoking and second hand smokes effects, what the hell is your point?

    Context. My post addresses the broader issue of whether or not the public should be able to regulate businesses.

  • ||

    I think the framing of this issue as a property rights issue is misplaced.

    Smoking bans are a ban on activity by individuals, not on property owners, per se.

    Just like communities ban fighting in places of public accommodation, they ban smoking.

    The ban is on the activity of the smoker.
    The degree to which the property owner can be said to facilitate the banned activity is the degree to which they are having the property rights restricted. A bar owner with a sign on the wall that says "Fighting Section" would be facilitating the illegal activity of patrons and might be in trouble. Once the ban on individuals smoking in public places goes into effect, the property owners with the "Fighting/smoking section" signs are on the same side of the law.

    This is a restriction on SMOKER's rights, not on business owners, per se.

  • ||

    Neu Mejican,
    It actually is a restriction on the business owners, because it further restricts what kind of business they can run. For example, if there were a ban on drinking wine in places of public accommodation, would it be a restriction on the drinkers, or the business owners who formerly served wine as a part of the atmosphere of their establishment?

    I don't think it passes the red face test - at the end of the day, regardless of who the restrictions are placed on, a bar owner still can't say "I don't care if you smoke or not," and his property rights are being violated.

  • ||

    This is a restriction on SMOKER's rights, not on business owners, per se.

    I think you're right. However, has it legally ever been found that a person has the right to smoke? I don't know but I've never heard of such.

  • ||

    Dan T, that's the beauty of negative law and the 9th and 10th amendments. If it's not prohibited, it's permitted.

  • ||

    Dan T, that's the beauty of negative law and the 9th and 10th amendments. If it's not prohibited, it's permitted.

    But if somebody has a right to do something, then it can't be prohibited, correct?

  • ||

    RC,

    It actually is a restriction on the business owners, because it further restricts what kind of business they can run.

    Sure, that is accurate, but hardly without precedent. We ban many types of business in our communities. No community I know of allows the "beat up strangers" business model either. And as for you "place to drink wine" business...that is a heavily regulated industry.

    Would it make sense to replicate the alcohol license model for smoking? Sounds easier to just ask smokers to step outside (hence the stupidity of outdoor bans).

  • ||

    To the, oh so pure, citizens of Belmont, CA:

    When Miguel comes by weekly, fires up that two stroke hedge trimmer to make your estate more attractive, do you feel any guilt about the passerbys who have to inhale that foul smelling, carcinogenic exhaust? No? Then shut the hell up, hypocrites!

    The truth is that smoking irritates some people. So what? Lots of things that you do irritates me. I can find an unproven health hazard for a lot of them. Your car, the herbicide that Miguel is spraying, your after shave/perfume, your damned barbecue etc. Amazingly enough, I'm too considerate to support a ban on these and other activiteis that you have questionable reasons to do. You're behaving like sanctimonious assholes and you know it.

  • ||

    JsubD,

    fires up that two stroke hedge trimmer to make your estate more attractive, do you feel any guilt about the passerbys who have to inhale that foul smelling, carcinogenic exhaust? No? Then shut the hell up, hypocrites!

    Not sure about Bellmont, but gas powered hedge trimmers have been banned in many communities since well before the ban on indoor smoking.

  • ||

    RC,

    Re: negative law and the constitution.

    The constitution defines a process for creating positive laws (aka, restrictions on rights). If the law adheres to the process, then it is legal.

  • GregN||

    I think people miss the basic issue with smoking, it's not really about health, although that is an issue, it's about politeness. I agree that there should not have to be laws that dictate behavior, but the fact is that some people are too self absorbed, oblivious, or rude to not smoke around people who don't smoke. If cigarettes only affected the person who smoked them there would likely be no laws at all regarding them. I mean, how many people notice when someone in a room doesn't light up a cigarette? On the other hand, if a single smoker lights up, well... everybody is effected (also, how may smokers hold their cigarette under their own faces?). Many smokers, not all, seem to care more about their right to smoke than their fellow citizen's right not to have that smoke in their face. My father taught me that in America my right to swing my bat ends when it's going to hit you in the head. If smokers can't be polite enough to not smoke around others who don't, then those others have a right to stop that bat before it hits them, and the law is often the only recourse. So, if you don't want laws the regulate behavior, then quit being an ass.

  • ||

    NM - I think the reason that there aren't any "beat up strangers" businesses is that it would be clearly unlawful - the business would be built on assault.
    In re: wine, maybe the solution is to go the opposite direction and treat wine normally rather than acting like crazy people about alcohol.
    The only reason this is an issue is because there is a perceived/potential harm from second-hand smoke. But it's legal to smoke. So the default should be, if it's legal, you can do it anywhere unless the owner of the property you're on tells you to stop or leave the property.

    Also, I meant negative law in a more general sense - that if it's not prohibited it's permitted, rather than a positive law system where if it's not permitted it's prohibited. If that makes any sense.

  • BIG NANNY||

    "Because some people have values other than health, such as "pleasure".

    That is NOT a a valid opinion!!!

  • ||

    RC,

    "clearly unlawful"

    Currently, in many communities, it is clearly unlawful to conduct "place to smoke" business.

    But it's legal to smoke. So the default should be, if it's legal, you can do it anywhere unless the owner of the property you're on tells you to stop or leave the property.

    Currently, in many communities the activity of smoking in a place of public accommodation is not legal. Activities can be narrowly defined. It is also, in most communities, illegal to masturbate in places of public accommodation, despite masturbation being perfectly legal.

    Are you saying that these smoking bans are unconstitutional? You would have me on your side with the "in home" bans, and I think the outdoor bans serve to create an undue burden on the smokers.

  • ||

    Hmmmmm....

    I just thought of something kind of sad - these cities have put smoking in the same category of activity as masturbation/nudity/sex.

    I know business regulations are complicated and vary state to state, so the smoking bans in bars are most probably constitutional, I just have a gut feeling that they're wrong. And I don't even smoke!

    But yes, in-home bans would definitely be unconstitutional. But then again, I don't think that the Constitution grants the authority to carry out the War on Drugs, so I'm not much of a jurist.

  • ||

    NM - there are entire members-only clubs dedicated to masturbation. Would you support indoor smoking if the club or bar required you to become a member? Then it wouldn't really be "the public" anymore, it would be "members only"

  • ||

    RC,

    The only reason this is an issue is because there is a perceived/potential harm from second-hand smoke.

    And the science says that potential harm is dependent upon the environment in which the exposure occurs. The harm occurs in enclosed spaces where the smoke lingers. That includes places of public accommodation, where the risk is primarily to the workers, and in homes, where the risk is to the residents. The state has a more legitimate claim to regulation in the places of public accommodation than in the home (although there are state interests in regulation of some behaviors in homes).

  • ||

    RC

    NM - there are entire members-only clubs dedicated to masturbation. Would you support indoor smoking if the club or bar required you to become a member? Then it wouldn't really be "the public" anymore, it would be "members only"

    Both kinds of members-only clubs exist in many large cities with smoking bans in place. I have no problem with that situation.

  • JBinMO||

    "these cities have put smoking in the same category of activity as masturbation/nudity/sex."

    You can do all those things in your appartment. This is more like drug possession.

  • ||

    "....outdoor bans serve to create an undue burden on the smokers."

    I would say that outdoor bans serve to harrass smokers, much like a victorious army harrasses an enemy during the exploitation phase of a military operation.

  • ||

    Off to my smoke free work environment.

  • ||

    VM,

    Thanks. :)

  • ||

    At the recent Democratic Presidential Debate, many of the Democratic candidates supported a national law on banning smoking in "public places" (all Federal land, parks, ...??).

    Perhaps we can have a satellite look for someone lighting up in Yosemite using infrared change detection, then download co-ordinates to a Predator drone to fire a missile on the smoker - after all, LIVES ARE IN DANGER ( by the second hand smoke). Smoke out the smokers.

  • ||

    Not sure about Bellmont, but gas powered hedge trimmers have been banned in many communities since well before the ban on indoor smoking.

    I'm not trying to pull a joe here, but where? I'm in Detroit where pollution is considered a civic virtue, so I may be out of the loop on this.

    BTW, The same comment could apply to lawn mowers as well. They still make human powered models.

  • ||

    I used to smoke for many years (two packs of Camel straights a day) but quit at the end of the last century.

    There's no non-smoker like an ex-smoker. I avoid smokers whenever I can. I'm happy to see smoking forbidden in places I can't avoid. I'd be happy to see smoking forbidden in places I used to go into but now avoid, like bars and restaurants.

    PS. If the smokers would pay to have the stink cleaned out of my clothes I'd be less militant about where they smoke.

  • ||

    The problem with this analysis is that many things are pleasurable yet nobody has any interest in denying us the ability to play Scrabble or shoot hoops in the driveway or take Sunday afternoon naps, etc.

    Dan T., are you my grandma?

    The problem with members-only smoking clubs is that eventually all the cool kids will go there to drink and socialize. Then the smoking-ban zealots, who wish to hang out at the coolest bars (and who are, by definition, *not* cool), will go and get smoking banned everywhere, again.

    If it's a matter of making sure that both smoking and non-smoking bars are available, then we should just repeal the smoking bans, because both options were available in spades before any bans went into effect.

  • ||

    KenK:

    So smoke makes your goddam sweaty clothes stink.

    The fact that you're a former smoker proves you don't have a problem with it. You enjoy the ego trip of being an a--hole without getting your balls busted. Your time is coming.

  • ||

    JsubD,

    California, of course, was the first to ban gas powered lawn machines (more due to leaf blowers than trimmers)...LA ordinance was the first one I remember. It was related to their attempts to reduce smog.

    I may be wrong on whether or not a "trimmer" would have been allowed under the ban, but I bet a lawn mower would have.

  • Rather Drunken Minion of URKOB||

    "I'd be happy to see smoking forbidden in places I used to go into but now avoid, like bars and restaurants [and her cooter]"

    zoom zoom zoom

  • GregN||

    "The fact that you're a former smoker proves you don't have a problem with it. You enjoy the ego trip of being an a--hole without getting your balls busted. Your time is coming."

    Such hostility. This is one reason why nuisance laws are around at all, and this is exactly what anti-smoking laws are. Health is a minor issue here as far as the over all social effects, but it's an easier sell, like WMDs.

    Look, the point is that as a non-smoker my rights to not be assailed by the smoke coming off your cigarette or out of your mouth, are as valid as your right to smoke. The difference is that my not smoking doesn't effect anyone else, but your smoking effects everyone around you. The smoker is the active party and is therefor responsible for the conflict. It's no different than if I burned some foul smelling thing next to you. You could just leave, but why should you have to leave, when I'm the one causing the conflict?

    Most smokers will sit in a room, on a patio, even a park bench, light up and watch the smoke drift away, filling the room or floating into face of another. They will be careful not to let the smoke get in their own face but other than that they likely wont think about this at all. If one of those people tells them to stop, they will go on endlessly about their rights and how if you don't like it you should leave. What about the right of those around them? Regardless of what they think though, that smoke is an assault on the rights of those around them.

    Nuisance laws are around because some people refuse to accept that when you are the cause of the disturbance, you are responsible for ending conflicts that arise from it. For those that don't get it, those around them have a choice; force them to stop with laws, or eliminate them. Laws seem to work better.

  • ||

    GregN:

    Your argument goes up in smoke considering the fact that you breathe two pounds a day of automotive and industrial fumes and an amount of cigarette smoke too small to measure.

    For the government to give the upper hand to inveterate troublemakers like yourself is barbaric.

    Your power comes from an obscenely rich medical establishment who wants to replace tobacco with prescription drugs at ten prices and spends billions on junk science and political bribes to that effect.

    How much of that loot are YOU getting?

  • GregN||

    Joe Camel, try reading my posts again, you seem to have missed my point. I don't care about the health effects or the science, I don't like smoke in my face.

    You right to smoke is trumped by my right not to have your smoke in my face. It is because your actions (the smoke) that are the cause of the disturbance, not mine. Since I am civilized I use the power of law to protect my rights, I could very well just kill you, but that is rather less than civilized. Unless you would rather us "inveterate" (I'm guessing you mean spineless) troublemakers choosing to protect our rights some other way?

    Now if you could get tobacco companies to figure out how to make a cigarette that doesn't produce smoke that goes in my face, then we would no longer have a problem.

    For the record I agree with you about big medicine, they lie and steal from us every day but my power comes from me and my vote, if they happen to agree then so much the better.

  • ||

    Life is dangerous and leads to death.
    We must ban it now!!!!

  • ||

    """You right to smoke is trumped by my right not to have your smoke in my face."""

    Sez who?

  • ||

    """Nuisance laws are around because some people refuse to accept that when you are the cause of the disturbance, you are responsible for ending conflicts that arise from it."""

    They exist because people are self-centered. It's all about me, I don't like it. Therefore, I have a right to prevent you from doing it.

    The problem with that line of thinking is that it anti-freedom. In a free society, everyone has the right to bother everyone else a little bit. Particularly in public spaces.

  • ||

    OK, so let's ratchet down the rhetoric a little and let me throw out a libertarian philisophical approach here. What happens to the concept of "strict liability" in all this? GregN's point about his "right" to not be assailed by your smoke is surely partially right under this idea. If he is on his own private property (ie - in his car), then doesn't he have the right to not have his property affected by your activity. I can't think of the number of times I've switched the AC to "recirc" so that I can stop inhaling the fumes from a cigarette some asshole is hanging out his window in front of me. That only marginally works, and I'm still PO'd that I had to do it. Technically, in some libertarian nirvana, I could walk up to him and say 1) put it out; 2) pay me; 3) suffer the consequences in court. My argument would be even stronger if someone in the house next to mine was smoking in his driveway, which happens all the time, reducing the pleasure I can derive from sitting on my porch and thus reducing the value of my property. Charge him? Sue him? No, that's not common sense. I can put up with some of it. But why are some of you so in favor of "your" rights when they degrade the rights of others - and I talk both ways here. That doesn't sound very libertarian of you.

  • ||

    edcoast:

    The asshole is you, and you work at it. To claim a right not to be assailed by cigarette smoke from a car in front of you is totally ludicrous. It doesn't happen. What do you do about the exhaust fumes?

    You could not say "put it out" in some libertatian nirvana without getting your ass kicked. Same goes for driveway smoking or anywhere else in the breezy outdoors.

    Who the hell are you to talk about rights, the Queen Mum? You're a bit touchy, asshole. Better be careful.

  • ||

    Greg N:

    How does your vote have any power when mine instantly cancels it out?

    The Medical Establishment doesn't care whether you agree or not.
    Your power over a multitrillion dollar hustle is nonexistent. Have you sought psychiatric help?

  • ||

    edcoast,

    You are hysterical. Suppose somebody farted in their driveway next to your house. Are you gonna call 911? You are worried about somebody smoking in a car in front of you on the streets? How about paying attention to the road before you get somebody killed.

  • ||

    It seems to me that using the logic of the anti-smokers that public consumption of alcohol should be banned. After all, banning public drinking would save lives and protect workers, too.

    Whatever happened to "It's a Free Country."

  • ||

    Such hostility. This is one reason why nuisance laws are around at all, and this is exactly what anti-smoking laws are.

    I contend that nuisance laws create hostility. Many a polite smoker has reached the point of, "Too bad whiner. Go someplace where it's illegal." or "Call the Cops, asshole." Unintended consequences and all. Criminalizing rude behavior seems to cause more of it.

  • ||

    JsubD,

    I don't really follow your logic here...

    Many a polite smoker has reached the point of, "Too bad whiner. Go someplace where it's illegal." or "Call the Cops, asshole."

    If, as you say, polite smokers reach this point frequently enough that we can call them "many." And if we posit, based on smoking rates, that they will be outnumbered by non-smokers at a rate of about 4 or 5 to one, then are these smokers not bringing the wrath of the majority down on themselves? My guess is that the number of "rude" non-smokers is smaller than the number of smokers. But if even the polite smokers are willing to issue such a challenge to the rude non-smokers, then the polite non-smokers are likely treated even more shabbily by the "rude" smokers.

    Enough "go somewhere it is illegal" responses might motivate the majority to support the concept and make it illegal in the places they go.

    Despite the sloppy construction in this post...I think that about sums up how we have gotten to this point.

  • ||

    JsubD,

    To clarify that a bit.

    A small problem, an annoyance, a nuisance that makes itself into a problem in the eyes of the majority will the the nuisance that majority is motivated to make illegal.

    Our concept of liberty puts the brakes on this tendency, but only up to a point. Given that the smokers, as GregN rightly points out, are the ACTIVE party (the non-smoker's non-smoking not having an impact on the smoker's rights in anyway, but the smoker's smoking being at least a nuisance and at worst a cause of actual harm), then the smoker's have a steeper hill to climb than if the situation were reversed.

    Of course you can spin the positive/negative active/passive perspective on this issue either way, but I think for smoker's to make a negative rights claim, they need to show their action cause no harm. Smoker's outdoors can make this claim easily. Indoors is a different matter.

  • ||

    I am working, of course, under the assumption that a negative right is a right not to be subjected to an action of another human being

    And that smoking, because it imposes itself on others in an enclosed space, may be cause for a negative rights claim by the non-smokers.

    It is harder for the non-smokers to make that claim when outdoors.

  • ||

    JsubD,

    I don't really follow your logic here...


    "Criminalizing rude behavior seems to cause more of it." It's just an observation about human behavior. Go to the park where the no skateboarding signs are posted. Observe the behavior of the skateboarders. The attitude is You've already decided that I'm an undesirable. Why even bother to be polite. Treat someone like a jerk for no good reason, they start acting like jerks.

    BTW, Your after shave offends me. I'm allergic to your wife's perfume. There oughta be a law!

  • ||

    And don't get me started on your 4th of July Barbeque! Talk about second hand smoke!

  • ||

    JsubD,

    The question in this debate, of course, orbits around the phrase "for no good reason."

    From the perspectives of the rude smoker (dismisses the reason) and the polite non-smoker (sees the smoker's point, to a degree), "good reason" has far different meanings. Likewise from the perspective of the rude non-smoker (dismisses the reason) and the polite smoker (sees the non-smoker's point).

    When you add up the non-smoker's who dismiss the the smoker's point and temper that dismissal with the "to a degree" of the polite non-smoker's you get a position that give smoker's leeway to engage in the activity of smoking around non-smokers, you will get something close to the bans in places of public accommodation (I believe that is empirically demonstrated). When you add in the smoker's who dismiss the non-smoker's point, you are likely to see a push back that extends the restrictions. When that push back goes to far, the polite non-smoker's will switch sides back to the smoker's side and help temper those restrictions.

    It is a dynamic process.

  • ||

    And delete those seemingly random possessives in that last post. Where'd they come from?

  • Allen||

    Funny how we have scientific evidence linking childhood asthma and freeways and yet no one wants to ban cars.

  • ||

    I'm actually more in agreement with the outdoor bans than the indoor bans. Because the second-hand smoke argument goes away when you're talking about private property rights. If you don't like a business that allows smoking, don't do business with them or work for them.

    I remember smoking in McDonald's at one time. Before I had heard of any government smoking ban, McDonald's (a private property owner) chose to ban smoking on their property. My guess, they gave in to customer demand, exactly the way things are supposed to work in a free society.

    Typically, the only reason to ever go to the government to get something done is because A) you're too lazy to do it the right way B) it really only concerns a very small number of people whose rights aren't really being violated or C) there is no possible other way known to God.

    I understand the necessary evil of the government. However, government should act in the most limited and least intrusive fashion possible. That's how the Constitution was written. As someone else mentioned, the Constitution is a restriction on government, not on the citizens. Our rights are not given to us by the government. We have always had our rights. A Right in my opinion is anything that I can do without harming someone else without their consent. For example, smoking in my privately owned business is a Right. Health care is NOT a Right.

    My 2 bits,
    Sean

  • Allen||

    BTW --> GreN, I don't like your cars pollution in my face or lungs when I'm on my bike. I'm sure you'll be understanding when I push the city council to outlaw your car.

    ** wanders off to go kick someone in the nutts simply because they're wearing Wranglers and I don't like Wranglers **

  • ||

    Sean with the 2 bits,

    A Right in my opinion is anything that I can do without harming someone else without their consent. For example, smoking in my privately owned business is a Right. Health care is NOT a Right.

    The debate, of course, is over whether "without harming someone else without their consent" applies in this case. Not whether your basic principle (least intrusive manner possible) applies.

  • ||

    "The debate, of course, is over whether "without harming someone else without their consent" applies in this case."

    If you walk into by my privately owned business and stay, you have consented. Where is the debate?

    Sean

  • ||

    Sean,

    I guess you haven't read the whole thread, but places of public accommodation operate under a certain degree of regulation despite their private ownership. Property rights are not absolute in any sense.

    In other words, the owner of the place of public accommodation does not have the right to give you permission to engage in certain activities.

  • ||

    Sean,

    In particular, the owner does not have the right to give permission for you to violate my rights.

    And the debate is whether smoking is an example of this situation.

  • ||

    Like I said up thread...

    I think smokers have a pretty steep hill to tread to make this a case of a negative right to smoke being violated.

  • ||

    I will reiterate, a steep hill to climb in the case of smoking in an enclosed place of public accommodation.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Guy from new mexico:

    "I guess you haven't read the whole thread, but places of public accommodation operate under a certain degree of regulation despite their private ownership. Property rights are not absolute in any sense."

    Sean's whole point was that many of those regulations are a result of a disregard for the concept of free society.

  • ||

    I see a loophole in this law. What is the legal definition of "a theatrical production"! Just keep a little puppet stage in your house.

  • ||

    I think you might be missing my point. The whole concept of the "public accommodation" is my problem. The government should not, and in my opinion does not, have the right to tell me I cannot allow smoking on my private property, business or not.

    In my opinion of original intent, the Constitution forbids the federal government from telling me what I can and cannot do with my property. Most states (from my knowledge) have constitutions that are very similar to the Constitution. However, counties, cities, municipalities, etc do not have constitutions. These are important distinctions. Any government below the state can enact pretty much any law that they want and still be constitutional. The federal government was intended to be a Republic and to defend the Nation and States from enemies foreign and domestic. The States were where democracy was to be experimented. So the smoking argument from a Constitutional and legal stand point at levels below state is clear. I'm just not sure about state-wide bans. Depends on the state.

    This was the beauty of our government under the Constitution. If you didn't like the laws enacted in your city, county, state, you could move to a new location. Or at least you had greater influence over what laws were enacted. Can't exactly do that easily when the federal government makes laws. Alas, we are no longer a government under the Constitution, we are something like a fascist, socialist mix. But definitely not a Republic and not even a Democracy. Sad.

    Enough rambling, for now.

  • ||

    Folks, we can all remember when everybody smoked and nobody cared. To complain about a wisp of smoke traveling from one car to another or one apartment to another would have been grounds for commitment to a mental institution. To complain that it makes sweaty clothes stink would have drawn derisive laughter. A complaint that it sets a bad example for children would be ignored.

    Then the World Health Organization -- a gang committed to increasing the power and profits of the medical establishment-- dictates that smokers are to be harassed at every opportunity. And what do you know ? Numbskulls by the millions turn all colors at the sight of a smoker and foam at the mouth about their "rights".

    Said numbskulls are too goddam stupid to realize that the WHO won't stop with smoking. They want to rule over a world of livestock.

    Remember, numbskull, you asked for it.

  • ||

    "They want to rule over a world of livestock."

    That's a brilliant quote. It sums up the attitude and intent of the Nanny-State exactly.

  • ||

    Fun thread. I thought I asked a legitimate question about property rights, but it was just a hypothetical. In reality, I probably agree more than not with the smokers. This is way overreaching by government. The real solution is to act like the considerate, polite humans we usually are. I find in outdoor smoking situations, smokers will often ask me if I mind if they smoke, or they will move far away before they light up. I can't think of a single time I actually said "Yes, I object. Go away." Geez, it doesn't bother me that much. If I walk up to an area where maybe 20 people are smoking, I may choose, as is my right, to sit somewhere else. I'm not making a statement, I've just exceeded my comfort level. A little consideration and common sense goes a long ways. So does an occasional foray into a loud, smokey blues bar.

  • ||

    Sean,

    The whole concept of the "public accommodation" is my problem.

    I recognize that, but even if you move away from the nuanced view of property that leads than more than two classes (public/private), there is no sense in which property rights supersede more basic rights (life, liberty, pursuit of happiness). Property rights are a secondary right that flows from your more basic rights. Because life, liberty, happiness require you to have the ability to secure certain resources, we recognize property rights. But your property rights do not give you freedom to violate others rights and they do not give you the right to sanction others to violate rights.

    If second-hand smoke in an enclosed space causes harm (a very fuzzy, subjective, contentious concept) it violates the rights of non-smokers and you as the property owner have no right to sanction the behavior on your property (see the "Beat up Strangers Section" example above).

    So the root of the conflict in this case is not the property rights, but is instead centered on whether or not second-hand smoke causes a legitimate harm. Attempts to turn it into a property rights debate, imho, result from the fact that the bulk of the evidence suggests that second-hand smoke can cause harm in enclosed spaces.

    The evidence of harm, however, is totally absent for open spaces.

    And the difference between a place of public accommodation and your home is a useful concept to protect your freedom. If we equate the to classes of private space, then a ban on indoor smoking reaches easily into your home.

  • ||

    we can all remember when everybody smoked and nobody cared

    Yes, no change in our attitudes is ever a good thing.

    =/;^)

  • ||

    I find this man's take on things applicable to this issue:

    I tend to think of rights as a quid pro quo. I have a right to do thus and so, connected with a responsibility to do thus and so. If I fail in my responsibility, then I "alienate" the right. This has always seemed to me the fundamental notion of what it is to live in society and surrender (rationally) to the rule of society. Of course society is often more powerful than individuals and may force people to surrender their actions even if they have not surrendered their will. But what is attractive about philosophically looking at human interchange in both personal morality and social morality is to see what does reason require, if anything. As soon as that question is broached, I tend to think in terms of the interrelationship of rights and responsibilities. I am puzzled that the notions that I call positive rights seem to be rights without responsibilities, where negative rights seem to be rights with reciprocal responsibilities that are commensurate with the rights gained.

    What responsibilities adhere to your right to smoke?

    http://webster.edu/~corbetre/philosophy/moral/h-rights/neg-pos.html

  • ||

    Neu Mejican:

    You think you're sounding all righteous and philosopical about the next man's "right" to smoke.

    You've gotten a message from one Richard Carmona, ex-Surgeon General and Professional Bullshitter, that smelling smoke is deadly and because you're not a smoker you want to have a little fun pretending that his obvious BS is fact.

    The answer to your idiot question is that it's a responsibility of smokers not to burn the building down. Beyond that, its none of the next citizen's goddam business. If you insist that it is, be prepared to have YOUR business minded.

  • ||

    ""I see a loophole in this law. What is the legal definition of "a theatrical production"! Just keep a little puppet stage in your house.""

    What if one's wife is crazy, does that count?

  • ||

    Joe Camel, internet tough guy.

    Quite the deep thinker too.

  • John H Baker||

    Greetings from the UK. I read this article with very little surprise as the anti-smoking zealots will not stop until we make a stand against them. Here in the UK we are making that stand. We are taking the Labour government to court and, if needs be, all the way to the European Court of Human Rights. As free and responsible citizens we can not, neigh WILL NOT sit idly by and watch as we are stripped of our freedom to choose where we can smoke. We at www.freedom2choose.info are fighting for the choice of either smoking pubs and non-smoking pubs and venues and steadfastly refuse to be treated like second class citizens to be herded outside in all weathers. I feel you, our American cousins, have nothing to lose but your shackles.

    Thanks.

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