By Jonathan Munroe
Strolling down the street towards work and you see two people standing in the parking lot with a smoke cloud beginning to build and billow around them. You don’t have to walk by them but you can smell a pungent odor wafting your way.
The research has proven that cigarette smoke causes many health issues including but not limited to lung cancer, emphysema, bad blood circulation, and much more. Smokers are bombarded with quit smoking ads and smoking bans not to mention the Surgeon General Warnings plastered all over tobacco products. Despite all of this, they still choose to smoke. Who are we to control and deny them their natural born right?
Many smokers do not mind certain restrictions on smoking. There are restrictions such as not smoking within twenty-feet of most doors, not smoking in vehicles with someone under the age of eighteen, and not smoking around children’s playgrounds. We only want to enjoy our guilty pleasure of smoking without being pestered and glared at the entire time. My stance is that outdoor areas should not ban smoking such as Universities, Hospitals, and other places. Let us die a happy people.
The Problem: Public Smoking
People have an issue with seeing smokers and many will claim second-hand smoke causes harm to them in outdoor venues. Many public buildings, including our own University, have proposed and implemented smoking/tobacco restrictions and there are many other places that do not allow it Period.
Public smoking is a problem that was created by non-smokers in an attempt to infringe on smoker’s rights. The Government has become a part of this conspiracy by increasing taxes on tobacco that has increased by over 250% over the last 5 years and the only reason that can be found for it is because it forces people to quit smoking and prevents health issues because people cannot smoke.
The Government should not be able to impose taxes on people in an attempt to control people’s lives and tell them what they are allowed to do and not allowed to do. There is a reason we do not live in a dictatorship.
Banning smoking on places like College Campuses and Hospitals infringes on the employee’s and student's rights. Picture, if you will, Do Do Do Do Do, a nurse has been working a 16hr shift, scrubs are still bloody from the patients lives she has been helping to save in the ER. She finally has a moment to steal away and smoke a cigarette to calm her nerves. Finally get a breather. The entire time she is attempting to recoup herself she hears people snickering about her and glaring at her. I challenge anyone to argue she has not earned her alone time. If full bans go into effect that means she will have to leave hospital grounds in order to enjoy her cigarette which means she will not be around when you need her.
Solution: Restrict Not Ban
A restriction to not smoke in front of doorways or in vehicles with someone who is under the age of 18 is acceptable. While smokers may find it to be an inconvenience most are ok because we understand that not everyone is a smoker and some would like to keep it away from them. This is acceptable. What is abhorrent is attempting to ban it all together and continue to raise taxes on tobacco in an attempt to tell Americans what we are and are not allowed to do. I would like to challenge all my readers to stop and think for a moment that if we allow this to continue and they succeed who/what is next? Alcohol? Soda? Sugar? Where does it end?
Let us Die Happy People