Public Health

'If They Can Come Into Our Car, They Can Come Into Our Homes'

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James Gennaro, a New York City Council member, plans to introduce a bill next week that would ban smoking in cars carrying anyone under the age of 18. Smokers caught violating the ordinance would be subject to a fine of $200 to $400 for a first offense, $500 to $1,000 for a second within a year, and $1,000 to $2,000 for a third. This is Gennaro's response to critics who object that such a law would violate privacy and infringe on personal freedom:

Boo-hoo. You can't subject kids to 43 carcinogens and 250 poisonous chemicals and claim privacy. Get over it. Their right to privacy doesn't extend so far as to poisoning kids.

If this is really about protecting children, the same concern would justify banning smoking in the home. Indeed, as Michael Siegel notes on his tobacco policy blog, it makes little sense to focus on cars when the vast majority of exposure for children whose parents smoke occurs at home. But Gennaro also offers another rationale:

I am just seeking every opportunity I can to denormalize smoking and to try to put it out of the reach of kids. I've lost family members to lung cancer and I've seen what happens.

Like bans on smoking in bars and restaurants, in parks and on beaches, and on sidewalks and streets, a ban on smoking in cars helps "denormalize" the habit, transforming it into a shameful vice practiced only in the privacy of one's home. Not incidentally, banning smoking everywhere but private residences (assuming it is still allowed there) makes it highly impractical to maintain a pack-a-day habit. Protecting nonsmokers from secondhand smoke (even when they freely choose to enter private businesses where smoking is allowed) thus becomes a pretext for protecting smokers from their own unhealthy choices.

Children, of course, do not have the same freedom as adults to choose their homes or their rides. But as I've said before, a somewhat higher risk of lower respiratory infections (one that is seen only in small children, not in the older kids and teenagers covered by Gennaro's bill) is not the sort of hazard that justifies overriding parental autonomy (let alone splitting up families, which is what would happen if smoking at home were recognized as a form of child abuse, as some activists urge). To be consistent, other parental decisions that can affect children's health, including those regarding bedtimes, TV watching, diet, exercise, and dental hygiene, also would be subject to micromanagement by the state. As Audrey Silk, founder of Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment, tells The New York Sun, "If they can come into our car, then they can come into our home. And everybody should be afraid of this, not just because of smoking."

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  1. “You can’t subject kids to 43 carcinogens and 250 poisonous chemicals and claim privacy. Get over it.”

    How about banning buses, cars and generators in Manhattan. That’s some of the most noxious air in the country, and kids run around in that muck, Mr. Gennaro, moron-esquire.

  2. good post, with many good points, Jacob, however:

    Protecting nonsmokers from secondhand smoke (even when they freely choose to enter private businesses where smoking is allowed)…

    I’ve always had a problem with this line of reasoning, because I’ve never seen a bar or nightclub that forbade smoking prior to the laws regulating it. Yes, I didn’t have to go to a nightclub or bar, I could stay home and not smoke, or go to church and not smoke, but neither are good places to meet babes. If my home were a good place to meet women, I’d have no need to go to a bar.

  3. in other words (I forgot to spell out my point): the market doesn’t always provide.

  4. And I haven’t found a church that allows smoking. Damn market.

  5. I think you’d be safe if you where exposed to only 4 hours of a shitty smoke-filled club once a week.

  6. Mr. Sullum’s arguments are sometimes pretty odd. In this case he claims that banning smoking with kids in the car is too intrusive, and then he says that the ban would make more sense if it was even more intrusive (by focusing on the home instead of the car).

    Then he goes on to say that if you restrict a harmful behavior by parents towards kids then you must restrict everything else that could possibly be considered harmful. Why this is, I’m not sure.

  7. in other words (I forgot to spell out my point): the market doesn’t always provide.

    Brrtt. Wrong answer. There’s just not sufficient demand for it.

  8. “in other words (I forgot to spell out my point): the market doesn’t always provide.”

    Nor should it, otherwise where’s my money for nothin’ and chicks for free. You certainly may (with what’s left of your freedom in Amerika) start your own non-smoking club, and my wife and I (she’s a babe, by the way) will be happy to come to your establishement.

  9. Dan, you’re being deliberately obtuse. Knock it off or you go back to troll status. You had been doing so well too…

  10. I rented a building in 2001 fo my barber shop.I did quite well for almost two years .I’n 2003 our drought broke and we had numerous storms and I fould the building flooded from the street,sshutting me down for the duration.It was not in the disclosure and my lamdlord blamed the city.I called the Health Dept.When the lady showed up I was cleaning flood water and smoking a cohiba.She said it was a shame but I should hire a attorney and if I was caught smoking again I would be subject to a 150.00 fine.

  11. “Then he goes on to say that if you restrict a harmful behavior by parents towards kids then you must restrict everything else that could possibly be considered harmful.”

    He doesn’t say the “must” restrict everything, he’s merely saying, “why wouldn’t they.” Once the rationale is established, they can just extend it to the home regarding smoking, then extend it within the home regarding other possibly harmful activities.

    Is there a higher fine if the windows are up?

  12. Brrtt. Wrong answer. There’s just not sufficient demand for it.

    Giving the reason why the market doesn’t provide does not negate the fact that the market doesn’t always provide.

  13. He doesn’t say the “must” restrict everything, he’s merely saying, “why wouldn’t they.” Once the rationale is established, they can just extend it to the home regarding smoking, then extend it within the home regarding other possibly harmful activities.

    Yes, it’s the slippery slope fallacy.

  14. x,y:

    Bars that allow smoking will include a mix of smokers and nonsmokers, especially if all bars allow smoking.

    Bars that are non-smokers only in a market that includes smoking bars are at a disadvantage, since they are choosing to restrict their customer base to a subset of the potential customers. (I’m assuming, based on experience, that nonsmokers are more tolerant of smoking than smokers are able to tolerate not being able to smoke, because of nicotine dependence). By restricting their customer base, they reduce their profitability, increasing the likelihood that they will go out of business.

  15. I could see blowing cig smoke in a young kid’s face for an extended time as a form of child abuse. But to include kids up to 18 and not even make an exception for open windows (if, in fact, the latter is accurate; haven’t RTFB), then this clearly goes way too far. As for the logic of this extending to homes, it might be a slightly harder sell since homes are (usually) bigger and thus the smoke would be less concentrated. But again, if any smoking in any car in any manner with anyone technically a “kid” can be banned, then yup, the logical extension is just waiting to be extended.

  16. James Gennaro, a New York City Council member, plans to introduce a bill next week that would ban smoking in cars carrying anyone under the age of 18.

    Just curious: Does he intend to require that every occupant of a car in which smoking occurs be required to produce ID? Could any of our lawyers comment on whether that would be permitted as a “reasonable search?”

  17. But, but, THE CHILDREN.

    I think legislative bodies should be banned from making any laws concerning The Children.

  18. I am just seeking every opportunity I can to denormalize smoking and to try to put it out of the reach of kids.

    What will it take to denormalize oppresive and pandering politicing in the city council chamber? Can we put that out of her reach?

  19. the slippery slope fallacy

    …which is unique among the fallacies in its perfect explanatory and predictive powers.

    But aside from than that, it’s, like, totally fallacious.

  20. I am just seeking every opportunity I can to denormalize smoking and to try to put it out of the reach of kids.

    What an angry little man. I’ve lost friends and family to all manner of ailments and catastrophes. It’s called life.

  21. Yes, it’s the slippery slope fallacy.

    It’s not a fallacy if it actually happens Dan.

    First it was just public buildings, then it was commercial entities open to the public and even private social clubs are being prohibitied. Now they are trying to get a foot in the door of private property that isn’t open to the public and some places are pushing for bans in multi-unit domiciles.

    So where exactly is the fallacy?

  22. Yes, Rhywun, but an angry little man enabled by the idiot soccer moms and Dan Ts of this world who gladly trade away liberties for their personal hobby horses.

    Don’t blame the politicians; they couldn’t do what they’re doing without support.

  23. This never would have happened if women did not have the right to vote. Not saying that they should not have that right, but it is true.

  24. innominate one,

    There’s no smoking ban currently in Detroit Metro area, yet there are plenty of bars that don’t allow smoking. Not bad babes either.

  25. It’s not a fallacy if it actually happens Dan.

    First it was just public buildings, then it was commercial entities open to the public and even private social clubs are being prohibitied. Now they are trying to get a foot in the door of private property that isn’t open to the public and some places are pushing for bans in multi-unit domiciles.

    So where exactly is the fallacy?

    It’s a fallacy because taking one step in a certain direction does not necessarily mean that you’ll take another. That’s not to say that you definitely won’t take another, but you can’t make that assumption.

    If you adhere to slippery slope logic, we could never take any action of any sort because it would always eventually lead to an undesirable outcome.

  26. the innominate one,

    I think your statement says more about the bars & nightclubs you have chosen to go to. I have been to places that banned smoking without a law. Not too many, but a few. Of course, lots of restaurants have gone non-smoking without a law. I think that shows how a market works.

  27. If you adhere to slippery slope logic, we could never take any action of any sort because it would always eventually lead to an undesirable outcome.

    By George, I think he’s got it!

    I knew you would come around one day, Dan.

  28. I’ve lost family members to lung cancer and I’ve seen what happens.

    I’m going to go out on a limb and assume that none of them were children. I wonder how old the youngest person to ever contract lung cancer was? I just hope the City Counciltwit is ready to “denormalize” all of the spending the tobacco taxes subsidize.

    To be consistent, other parental decisions that can affect children’s health, including those regarding bedtimes, TV watching, diet, exercise, and dental hygiene, also would be subject to micromanagement by the state.

    If Gennaro really cared about kids he would ban them from riding in cars altogether.

  29. “It’s the slippery slope fallacy.”

    Dan, oh wise one, surely you are aware that a “slippery slope” is not necessarily fallacious? Please tell me our favorite under-bridge resident didn’t fail logic 101:

    [Regarding legislation to outlaw cigarette machines.] “Sandra Starr, vice chairwoman of the Princeton Regional Health Commission?, said there is no ‘slippery slope’ toward a total ban on smoking in public places. ‘The commission’s overriding concern,’ she said, ‘is access to the machines by minors.'”?New York Times, Sept. 5, 1993.

    “Last month, the Princeton Regional Health Commission took a bold step to protect its citizens by enacting a ban on smoking in all public places of accommodation, including restaurants and taverns?. In doing so, Princeton has paved the way for other municipalities to institute similar bans?.”?The Record (Bergen County), July 12, 2000.

  30. Chew on that, Danny boy.

  31. Continuing to feed a troll and expecting it to logically respond to reason is also a fallacy.

  32. Giving the reason why the market doesn’t provide does not negate the fact that the market doesn’t always provide.

    The market will provide … at the right price. If you will sign a contract promising to come to my bar every Friday and pay a $10k cover charge, I will open up a smoke free bar for you. I will even let others in for free, just so you can have smoke free interaction.

  33. Would Gennaro ban cars if he had lost a family member in a car accident?

  34. And I haven’t found a church that allows smoking.

    You’ve never been to Quebec

  35. “Continuing to feed a troll and expecting it to logically respond to reason is also a fallacy.”

    But I found a slippery slope that actually happened that was about smoking bans.

    Dammit Dan, you get in here this minute and tell the Submit Comment button you screwed up and are sorry.

  36. Giving the reason why the market doesn’t provide does not negate the fact that the market doesn’t always provide.

    I realized after I posted what he was getting at. I believe my reading was plausible, though certainly not what the guy was getting at.

    The fact remains, though, that the market has spoken and there’s not sufficient (free market) demand for non-smoking bars. I add the paranthentical because it’s obvious there’s plenty of political demand.

  37. I’d like to employ a meta-slippery slope argument: that being that if we continue to use slippery slope arguments then eventually we’ll use nothing but slippery slope arguments.

    So stop.

  38. [Regarding legislation to outlaw cigarette machines.] “Sandra Starr, vice chairwoman of the Princeton Regional Health Commission?, said there is no ‘slippery slope’ toward a total ban on smoking in public places. ‘The commission’s overriding concern,’ she said, ‘is access to the machines by minors.'”?New York Times, Sept. 5, 1993.

    “Last month, the Princeton Regional Health Commission took a bold step to protect its citizens by enacting a ban on smoking in all public places of accommodation, including restaurants and taverns?. In doing so, Princeton has paved the way for other municipalities to institute similar bans?.”?The Record (Bergen County), July 12, 2000.

  39. “I’ve lost family members to lung cancer and I’ve seen what happens.”

    Man, I get so fucking sick and tired of these politicians exploiting their own personal experiences with lung Cancer (Al Gore is another perfect example) as some sort of trump card to silence legitimate criticism of their nanny-state excesses. We live in a free society and as such sometimes the choices we make turn out badly. Unless someone made the person in his family smoke, he needs to shut the hell up or at least be honest and introduce a law that outlaws smoking entirely.

  40. My parents used to smoke in the car with me and it was DISGUSTING.
    Doesn’t matter if the window is down.

    It is a blant assault of ones right to breathable air.

    Ya’ll can keep cancer to yrselves
    Go f*ck yrselves

  41. “It is a blant assault of ones right to breathable air.

    Ya’ll can keep cancer to yrselves
    Go f*ck yrselves”

    This has to be a highpoint of cogent argumentation. You have convinced me to change my ways. I will no longer engage in a “blant” assault on your right to breathable air.

  42. Not incidentally, banning smoking everywhere but private residences

    In my state, an organization called Tobacco Free Hawaii, having banned smoking in public and in private businesses, is now going after condos and apartments. And, given their name, clearly they won’t rest until it is illegal everywhere in Hawaii.

  43. “It is a bla[ta]nt assault of ones right to breathable air.”

    I brought you into this world, and I can take you out of it.

  44. Dudey
    “My parents used to smoke in the car with me and it was DISGUSTING.
    Doesn’t matter if the window is down.”

    And yet here you are living, breathing, trolling. I guess second hand smoke is not so bad huh?

  45. GET DOWN! IT’S AN ASSAULT BY THE BLANTS!

  46. For those of you still following Alabama prohibition news in the wake of the wet/dry vote Tuesday in Athens, Ala.:

    The mayor of Decatur, Ala., declined to veto one of the most draconian smoking ordinances in the state. It bans smoking even in bars that don’t allow minors.

  47. JW:
    The Blants don’t care if you get down. Yrselves is doomed anyway.

  48. Bobster,

    Ya see, I can’t breathe. I cough up flem and I have chronic bronchitis. So yeah I’m a little bit bitter. All I’m saying is smoke yrself silly, but keep it away from kids.

  49. Dudey,

    Sorry you’re sick but I have the same history and am not. Maybe there is another cause? (I don’t smoke but thanks for your permission to be silly anyway.)

  50. Bobster,
    There certainly could be other causes, but lets face it, smoking around kids is not very responsible behavior. Just because tobacco is legal doesn’t mean it’s safe for anyone. If it’s that addictive that parents can’t resist having a smoke with kids in the car, that should be a wake-up call. You won’t find pot head parents smoking up in front of their kids. At least, I hope not…

    be silly or blants WILL assualt you

  51. Despicability: “It’s a fallacy because taking one step in a certain direction does not necessarily mean that you’ll take another.”

    Ah. I get it. It’s a fallacy because the logic of the first step is completely arbitrary and not interested in the integrity of the next step. In other words: it’s all just made up as it goes along, with disclaimers along the way; “What? I’m not doin’ nothin’!”

    Very illuminating.

  52. My father used to smoke in the car and I thought it was wonderful.

    No bullshit.

  53. The mayor of Decatur, Ala., declined to veto one of the most draconian smoking ordinances in the state. It bans smoking even in bars that don’t allow minors.

    There are bars which do allow minors?

    [-20 points for anyone who makes a “miner” joke.]

  54. We should arrest ever parent whose life goal isn’t to have kids that live to experience a tube in their nose. Face it, Dudey, some people have different ideas about quality of life, and they are entitled to pass those ideas along to their kids, even if those ideas are harmful by your standards.

  55. There are bars which do allow minors?

    Most restaurants are also bars. Think Applebee’s and the like.

  56. A lot of bars also have shows where they allow people 18 and up, and put a wrist band on people who are 21 and up.

  57. I just read the McCain article and realized that we should be banning the act of taking your kids out into the sun.

  58. Lamar,
    I’m not talking about passing harmful ideas to yr children, I’m talking about passing poisonous, carcinogenic smoke into their lungs. Thats the whole point.

  59. There is a difference between poisonous and carcinogenic. Tobacco smoke is carcinogenic but not poisonous. And in the doses sustained second hand in a car ride, it’s not even particularly carcinogenic.

  60. Their right to privacy doesn’t extend so far as to poisoning kids.

    Only to aborting them, which is far less likely to result in lung cancer than second hand smoke.

  61. One of the things I have always wondered is just how bad plain tobacco is compared to tobacco with all the chemicals that the cigerette companies spray on their cigerettes to keep it burning and to add flavor. I can hardly wait for the goverment to ban tobacco. The economy is in terrible need of another 400 dollar per ounce tax free cash crop. Go DEA.

  62. because I’ve never seen a bar or nightclub that forbade smoking prior to the laws regulating it.

    I have, here in Toronto. Of course, they went out of buisness after the city banned smoking in bars.

  63. Protecting nonsmokers from secondhand smoke (even when they freely choose to enter private businesses where smoking is allowed) thus becomes a pretext for protecting smokers from their own unhealthy choices.

    And the drug war continues, unabated…

  64. Then he goes on to say that if you restrict a harmful behavior by parents towards kids then you must restrict everything else that could possibly be considered harmful. Why this is, I’m not sure.

    Why isn’t it obvious, Dan T.?

  65. Billy Beck wins the thread with his 4:35pm comment.

  66. Anecdotal story regarding voluntary smoke free bars to follow: in the last three years I’ve moved from Ireland (smoke free laws apply everywhere) to rural northern Arizona. The first town I lived in (Camp Verde pop’ 10,000 had a no-smoking bar), we’re talking serious cowbow, redneck kind of town here. The town I’m in now (Clarkdale – think Maybery – pop’ 3,500) also had a no smoking bar, one of two bars in all. I’m thinking that if these end of nowhere towns could support “smoke free” bars there really is no need for legislation. Mind you, we now have legislation and they are all smoke free.

    I always prefered the smoking bars, both because I smoke and the women were sleazier and the violence more ready. I like dives. That said, better looking, more upscale women frequent the smoke free places.

  67. One can always hope that libertarians will smoke more in defiance of anti-smoking laws, and the cult will eventually die out

  68. “I’m talking about passing poisonous, carcinogenic smoke into their lungs.”,/i>

    Ahh, the ever present spector of possible but unlikely future disease….

  69. “One can always hope that libertarians will smoke more in defiance of anti-smoking laws, and the cult will eventually die out”

    Ah, but we breed before we die, don’t we? That’s the rub.

  70. One can always hope that libertarians will smoke more in defiance of anti-smoking laws, and the cult will eventually die out

    Hey, a member of the Stasi reads the board!!!

  71. I should do a mash up where the light bulb in Ayn Rand’s Anthem is replaced by the cigarettes with the dollar sign on them.

  72. I believe it was Atlas Shrugged that had the $ cigarettes.

  73. “It’s a fallacy because taking one step in a certain direction does not necessarily mean that you’ll take another.”

    It does if the principle that led to the first step is still accepted.

    The principle here is that it’s alright to put a gun to someone’s head and tell them not to smoke. Once that’s accepted, the rest MUST follow as each politician tries to outdo his predecessors to show that he’s “doing something”.

  74. I think it’s about time we start convicting smokers on terrorism charges.

    They pollute the air with these radioactive carcinogenic, dirty bombs, then they liter the poisonous butt to eventually leach into our water supply.

    Smokers have killed 100 times more innocent people than “conventional” terrorists since 9-11 with second-hand smoke alone (in the USA).

    Not to mention another 3 million lung cancer deaths by the smokers themselves (since 9-11 in USA). In a sense, this makes them “suicide bombers.”

    Smokers. The REAL Terrorists.

  75. “Like bans on smoking in bars and restaurants, in parks and on beaches, and on sidewalks and streets, a ban on smoking in cars helps “denormalize” the habit, transforming it into a shameful vice practiced only in the privacy of one’s home.”

    I’m OK with that. Smoking is the biggest issue where I split from “the platform,” and most reasonoids. It has nothing to do with being a not smoker, with having lost family to lung cancer etc. I understand that people are responsible for themselves and should have freedoms– hell, I’m for legalization of pot, even though I have never (not once) even tried the stuff.

    Yes, I look down a bit on people who smoke, but I understand it is both an addiction and a choice. My problem is that there truly is a bigger health issue at stake, and smokers’ rights stop where I have a right to “freely associate” with some nice fresh air… in the workplace (notice how nobody is suggesting we allow smoking in the office again, like back in the 60s?). Children don’t have the “choice” to ride in an enclosed space without someone smoking, even when it is clearly an endangerment to their overall health.

    Likewise I don’t generally subscribe to the common assertion here that “private business owners should choose to allow smoking or not.” Most people are too introverted to complain or petition business owners to go non-smoking. If you want to have a private smoke club or a tobacco shop where everyone is a smoker, I am all for that (regardless of the overzealous Ohio law covering “all enclosed spaces.”) However given the choice at the polls, the overwhelming majority of voters felt that smoking should not be allowed in restaurants or even bars. The fear-mongering about loss of business before the vote has not become manifest after the fact.

    For me, this isn’t about the freedom to smoke, it’s not about protecting people/children… it’s about the freedom to not be around smokers inpublic places.

  76. “Children don’t have the “choice” to ride in an enclosed space without someone smoking, even when it is clearly an endangerment to their overall health.”

    Nor do they have the choice whether to eat chitlins or granola. Nor do they have a choice whether to ride in a 79 Pinto or new Volvo. Nor do they have the choice whether to live in a crime infested neighborhood or posh suburb. Nor do they have a lot of choices that could potentially impact their health and well being. Why don’t we just criminalize parenting?

  77. Children don’t have the “choice” to ride in an enclosed space without someone smoking, even when it is clearly an endangerment to their overall health.

    The data aren’t as “clear” as you think. A hypothetical, forty-years-down-the-road possible danger isn’t even measurable.

    Yes, I look down a bit on people who smoke

    That is a more honest explanation of what’s going on.

  78. Every comment I have seen here that argues against this particular law sets up with “why not ban this?” or “parents shouldn’t do this, either.” Ladies and gentlemen, diverting the argument to other, unrelated (or casually related) conflict is hardly a reasonable argument. I’m not engaging in politics or nany-statism here, I’m just suggesting that someone else’s right to smoke ends in closed areas where nonsmokers have a right to breath cleanly. The “smoking nazis” are annoying, but so are the CLASH people. I think we can reach a reasonable compromise between freedom and the (IMO) “enlightened” point of view that cigarette smoke is a public nuisance. If you wanna cry anarchy and claim the freedom to do anything anywhere, I’ll whip out the tired old cliche about the fist and the face. If you wanna smoke (anything and everything) in your house, I’m still there defending your rights. If 23% of you wanna smoke out the 77% of other public citizens, you’re going to have a fight, regardless of whether you think “the masses” are right or not.

    Seriously, does ANYONE here really think smoking should be allowed in office buildings, if management accepts it? Like you have a sea of 400 cubicles, and 45 people chain smoke all day? Who thinks that is a good idea?

  79. Damn, smokers are ignorant.

    “I’m a litter-bug. I’m gonna have cancer someday. You don’t see me complaining. You gotta die of something.” -ignorant Smoker

  80. “I’m an incessant nanny. I don’t like people to make their own choices. My way of doing things is the only proper way.” -ignorant Stalinst Dudey

  81. “Ladies and gentlemen, diverting the argument to other, unrelated (or casually related) conflict is hardly a reasonable argument.”

    But exposing your incredibly flawed logic by analogy is most certainly relevant. You would like nothing more than to shield your argument from any logic, data or precedent. Let’s face it, your “we don’t care about office building bans” argument isn’t much different from the arguments you’re decrying as “diverting” attention.

    Let’s face another hard fact about your office building logic: we don’t allow people to walk around naked in office buildings either, but we do allow in the home. Our family relationships are not the same as our societal relationships. People vis a vis society don’t have a lot of say, and aren’t responsible for what becomes of society. Parents, by contrast, are fully responsible. So, unless there is actual, quantifiable harm being done to a child. And no, vague promises of what may cause a potential illness in a child doesn’t count for the reasons stated above.

  82. I believe children can’t make the choice of whether or not their parents smoke in the car.

    Do you people (Lamar, Rhywun, Freedom) actually smoke in front of yr children?
    Is that any better than smoking crack, dope or meth in front of them?

  83. “Let’s face another hard fact about your office building logic: we don’t allow people to walk around naked in office buildings either, but we do allow in the home.”

    Didn’t you just prove my point? We don’t allow people to be naked in cars either.

  84. Dudey
    “Do you people (Lamar, Rhywun, Freedom) actually smoke in front of yr children?
    Is that any better than smoking crack, dope or meth in front of them?”

    I don’t smoke and you didn’t ask me but here’s my answer.

    An environmental extremist who believes that motorized equipment poisons people with exhaust could say “Do you people run your lawn mowers around your children? That is like shooting them in the head with a .357”

    The extremist is free to think this and act accordingly. It’s when he wants to force everyone else (via the government) to act according to his belief that irks me.

  85. Of course once the government backs the extremist with laws the belief will no longer be extremist but will become mainstream.

  86. “We don’t allow people to be naked in cars either.”

    But we allow them to be naked in front of their children, whereas we don’t allow it in front of co-workers.

    I do not smoke in front of children because I believe it sets a bad example.

    Of course smoking crack or meth is worse, because it is a much worse example (health-wise, legality-wise and impairment of judgment-wise). I wouldn’t smoke a joint around them for the same reason. Surely you aren’t saying that smoking a cig in front of your children is just as bad as crack? Are you?

    I think you’re confusing your ideas on how to raise children with some imaginary set of rules that should be forced on everybody.

  87. Lamar

    “…Surely you aren’t saying that smoking a cig in front of your children is just as bad as crack? Are you?”

    Yeah I think he is. This was an extremist view in the past but I think it is now on it’s way to mainstream thinking. Kind of a slippery slope kind of thing I think.

  88. I think hard drugs ARE worse for the user than cigs, but when you talk about second-hand smoke (volume and content) and a child’s perception of smoking, it’s not far off. Cigs are carcinogenic and radioactive afterall. Plus, nicotine is more addictive than most narcotics. I guess not all people believe these facts. But I do.
    To me, nothing smells worse than cigarette smoke. So I assume it must be poison. i don’t need studies or research to make that conclusion.

    Why no comments on my
    “Smokers. The REAL Terrorists.”
    post?
    Too true?

  89. Too absurd.

  90. I mentioned the guy who thinks exhaust fumes kill kids. Maybe he would write:
    “People who mow. The REAL Terrorists.”?

    Too true?

  91. Bobster, I think you’re on to something here. Mowers use gas, which comes from oil, which comes from Saudi Arabia, a nation that funds terrorism. Bingo. Mowers ARE terrorists.

  92. Bobster, Lamar,
    I give up.
    I guess I really don’t want more laws regulating what you can or can’t do in a car.
    I don’t want to promote a police state. Hillary will probably bring us there regardless.

    I just hope parents smarten up and do the right thing.

  93. Freedom,
    Damn right! Stupid mowers!

    Dudely,
    I hope parents do the “right” thing as well. I just don’t have the brains to know what the “right” thing is for everybody else. Therefore, as you said, I don’t want laws regulating what they can or can’t do.

  94. …what they can or can’t do based on my idea of the “right” thing.

  95. (notice how nobody is suggesting we allow smoking in the office again, like back in the 60s?)

    Maybe that’s just an oversight? In any event, mark me down as someone who thinks any legitimate property owner has the set-in-stone right to determine who may and may not smoke on said property. This extends to homes, businesses, cars, sports stadiums, churches, and so on. Before you ask, no, I don’t consider the state a legitimate property owner.

    Most people are too introverted to complain or petition business owners to go non-smoking.

    Well, that would be their problem as introverts to overcome, wouldn’t it? Particularly if…

    However given the choice at the polls, the overwhelming majority of voters felt that smoking should not be allowed in restaurants or even bars.

    …they are so cowardly to run crying to the state to stop someone from doing something when the polite, honest thing to do would be to ask and inquire first.

    Anyway, it seems you believe the majority gets broad powers to determine what’s right and what’s wrong, so there isn’t much point in discussing this with you, is there?

  96. As a non-smoker, I believe that other non-smokers who bitch about stupid shit like people smoking in bars owned by private individuals are pathetic.

    Get a life you sad, sad people.

  97. Dudey: Why no comments on my
    “Smokers. The REAL Terrorists.”
    post?
    Too true?

    Not true at all, and most here understood that right off the bat. I think maybe most folks just thought you were using too light a test. Try a 30lb line and be very quiet.

    That might work.

  98. Ban smoking in cars with children, and you kill children. Nicotine is a stimulant. Ideally, smokers no longer permitted to smoke while driving would stop and rest as required. In reality, some proportion of them won’t. Some of these will fall asleep and their children will die in the ensuing crash.

    Somehow I think this will outweigh any benefits from reducing children’s exposure to ETS.

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