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DoogMinAmo
03-28-2005, 08:12 PM
With Cincinnati in the middle of considering institution of a smoking ban. And the majority of Ohioans being non-smokers. And according to stand.com, 50K+ Ohioans a year die of secondhand smoke, well, I know how I would vote... Opinions (I know there was a topic on this last year)/ vote.

TeamCasey
03-28-2005, 08:23 PM
Redundant on my part, but I still believe it should be up to the small business owner. Let the market decide.

Reds4Life
03-28-2005, 08:24 PM
I'm not a smoker, and I would not support a city imposed ban. If individual establishments want to ban smoking, fine, it's private property and that is thier right, but I wouldn't want the city telling me I don't have a choice.

pedro
03-28-2005, 08:46 PM
I won't vote in poll since I no longer live in Cincinnati, but being a non smoker and having spent a lot of time in places where they do have a ban (california, new york city), I think it's great.

Nothing worse than going out to a bar or to see a show and coming home smelling like an ashtray.

CTA513
03-28-2005, 09:22 PM
I dont smoke and I wouldnt vote to ban smoking.
It should be up to the business to decide if they want to ban smoking or not.

cincinnati chili
03-28-2005, 09:23 PM
Since those of us in Cincy shouldn't vote, out of curiosity, how is this poll going?

DoogMinAmo
03-28-2005, 09:30 PM
Since those of us in Cincy shouldn't vote, out of curiosity, how is this poll going?

?

westofyou
03-28-2005, 09:31 PM
Since those of us in Cincy shouldn't vote, out of curiosity, how is this poll going?

9-2 smelly clothes people :allovrjr:

zombie-a-go-go
03-28-2005, 09:51 PM
I reject the ban! Even though I quit. If you don't want to come home smelling like an ashtray... don't go to a smoking establishment. It's not rocket science, people.

gonelong
03-28-2005, 10:06 PM
I am sick of people thinking they can tell other people how to live their lives. I know the smoking issues is a little different than most with the 2nd hand smoke, but I just can't agree with telling people what they can and cannot do on their own property.

GL

Redsfaithful
03-28-2005, 10:36 PM
I am sick of people thinking they can tell other people how to live their lives. I know the smoking issues is a little different than most with the 2nd hand smoke, but I just can't agree with telling people what they can and cannot do on their own property.

GL

So you're anti-zoning then?

WVRed
03-28-2005, 10:45 PM
I reject the ban! Even though I quit. If you don't want to come home smelling like an ashtray... don't go to a smoking establishment. It's not rocket science, people.

Exactly.

I dont smoke, but the decision to allow smoking should be left up to the owner of the property or business.

Red in Chicago
03-28-2005, 11:04 PM
my biggest problem is that the smoking section vs non smoking sections in a bar or restaurant is mostly a joke...i can't begin to tell you the number of times i've been out to eat with my parents at a restaurant and asked for the non smoking section...only to find out that the smoking section is literally five feet away...or better yet, on the other side of the table, which only has a short see through glass partition. my mother has emphazema so it's very hard for her to deal with smoke...even candles or someone wearing too much perfume can get to her...there have been numerous times when we've been in the middle of eating and some smoke makes its way over to our table and she starts coughing...we've even had to leave without finishing our meals on a few occasions.

and it's not just indoors that smoking is a problem...how many times do you see workers puffing away their cigs at the entrance way to an establishment...personally, i hate the smell, but i can tolerate it if i have to...i don't like to tell people how to live...but when i think about how my poor mother suffers from second hand smoke whereever we go, it really gets me...

DoogMinAmo
03-28-2005, 11:14 PM
Might I retort why insist on physical education/ gym class for chidren then? Should it not be their decision on whether or not they want to be healthy. Couple notes about the analogy:

1. One may argue a child is unable to make a mature decision for himself, and possibly endanger his health. Judging by the good number of smokers I know who acknowledge the habit as a health risk, and their unwillingness to respond to the health endangerment, maybe they can not decide either.

2. In gym class, if a student decides not to exercise, it is his own health he jeopardizes, a smoker jeopardizes the health of those around him/her, a big problem I have with it.

3. An administration has chosen to incorporate a health minded class to better the health of those it is responsible for. Gym class was not always a part of the curriculum. Maybe those who owned schools thought it unfair they had to build gyms to accommodate the new class, but they did it because it was in the best interest of the students.

4. It is only a matter of time before the entire country realizes the merit to such an approach. It is usually less popular in, and I don't want to invite this discussion but I probably am, conservative regions. Not to mention Ohio is in the top half in the country of percentage of people who smoke, but the percentage is still about 21%.

A related concern of late has been the rising obesity epidemic in this country. Physical Education classes address this, as well as many government programs, because we as a nation are realizing it is costly on many levels to be fat. The same realization has come about smoking, but the response has been different. There is a backlash over people's right to smoke. I guess you can argue one has the right to be obese, but if it costs everyone else much money for that person's right, beit healthcare, more gas fro transportation, larger stores, are all others being infringed upon? Back to smoking, if by walking by someone who smokes on the street causes me to injest the nast, should I not walk on the street anymore, or can courtesy dictate that the person should only indulge his habit at his cost alone?

This is dangerously close to a politics discussion, but I think we can conduct it civily.

RBA
03-28-2005, 11:19 PM
I think it would be a good idea to ban smoking all together.
Smoking kills. Think about it.

All 4 of my Grandparents died at an early age. Smoking played a key part in that.

Just call me Pro Life.

gonelong
03-28-2005, 11:34 PM
So you're anti-zoning then?

I am anti-anti. ;)

GL

gonelong
03-28-2005, 11:40 PM
I think it would be a good idea to ban smoking all together.
Smoking kills. Think about it.

I enjoy a cigar once in awhile. Pretty much everything kills in one way or another, what's next on the ban list?



All 4 of my Grandparents died at an early age. Smoking played a key part in that.

Just call me Pro Life.

I am sorry you lost your Grandparents early, I have been fairly lucky in that regard. On my Mom's side my Grandmother passed in her late 50's and Grandpa at 76. On my Dad's side, both were in their mid-90s.

I am also Pro Life, I'd just like to be able to live mine in the way I see fit. (I occasionally smoke a cigar)

GL

StillFunkyB
03-28-2005, 11:55 PM
I smoked for about 11 years, and just quit in December. For now I think it should not be up to the city to ban it. See I feel that you should be allowed to light up in a bar. I mean it's a bar for cryin out loud. I don't think you should be allowed to smoke in a bowling alley where there are lots of kids, and non-smokers. Now I know there are non-smokers who go to bars, and what not, but those numbers are much fewer than people who attend bowling alley's. Laundromats are another place that there shouldn't be smoking, but almost every one I have ever been in allows it.

So I don't think it should be up to the city, but there are really some places where it should be stopped.

DunnersGrl44
03-29-2005, 12:03 AM
I smoke when i drink, and I like the smoking ban. It;s making me not smoke so much... and it's less smokey in establishments. Better for peoples health!

Falls City Beer
03-29-2005, 12:14 AM
I'm not real keen on telling private businesses that they can't allow smoking.

Public buildings: that's one thing. Businesses: that's entirely another.

And I'm a non-smoker--quit six years ago.

westofyou
03-29-2005, 12:52 AM
quit six years ago.

17 years of bliss for me.

paintmered
03-29-2005, 01:12 AM
I'm not real keen on telling private businesses that they can't allow smoking.

Public buildings: that's one thing. Businesses: that's entirely another.

And I'm a non-smoker--quit six years ago.


Exactly how I feel about it as well. There's debate of banning all tobacco at UC too. It may even come to vote pretty soon. It hasn't kept me from smoky environments in the past, I doubt it will in the future either. Am I annoyed by it? Of course. But those are the rules at the place I am visiting and by walking into a smoking establishment, I accept those rules.

Oh, and I've never touched a cigarette in my life - and I plan on keeping it that way.

Steve4192
03-29-2005, 01:13 AM
What FCB said.

SteelSD
03-29-2005, 02:15 AM
Back to smoking, if by walking by someone who smokes on the street causes me to injest the nast, should I not walk on the street anymore, or can courtesy dictate that the person should only indulge his habit at his cost alone?

Actually, if inhaling potentially harmful pollutants is your concern, then going outside really isn't an option for you. And by all means avoid food preservatives and sunlight. ;)

Here's the thing (not pointing this specifically at you, Doog)...

I continually hear folks complain about eating at restaurants that allow smoking. Don't eat there then. Complaints about the haze at bars that allow smoking. Don't drink there then. Want to avoid second-hand smoke? Ok. But why ask the government to make it a virtually smoke-free world when you don't have the discipline to avoid places where smoking is allowed?

Ironically, I also hear a lot about how "costly" smokers are for the rest of the public. Well, even if we conceded that point, does anyone realize how much income your state and county receives in taxes from the distribution and sale of cigarettes?

As of July 1st, 2004 the Ohio state per-pack tax was $0.55 per pack. In 2000, Cuyahoga County received $261,494,388.00 from county cigarette taxes alone (can't find more recent data).

Does anyone find it somewhat odd that instead of pushing to ban smoking, State Legistlators continue to pimp the concept that an increase in the cigarette tax will do the trick? Does anyone truly believe that this is a HEALTH issue regardless of where you live?

Which is more plausible:

1) Per-pack cigarette tax increases are positioned to end smoking.
2) Per-pack cigarette tax increases are necessary because of the tax dollars lost due to the smokers who quit because of high per-pack taxes.

<Editor's note...If you picked #1, you're nuts.>

It's like our government officials are walking up to the tobacco bagman and saying, "You promote unhealthy habits that cost our constituants money and we don't like you. Now give me my money."

The same thing happens with alcohol, but they tried that whole prohibition thingy and I guess folks didn't like that so much. Now smoking is the nasty habit cause de' jour but the new wave government approach at all levels is to hate it but not so much that you can't make money off the smokers.

Banning the activity may be "safer" for everyone, but you're still going to pay for the lost tax revenue. And ironically, because that lost revenue is currently collected from the MINORITY of residents, the non-smoker majority is going to end up paying more. Factor in that any health care savings will be washed away by former smokers who are now living longer? Yeah. Exactly.

Sorry to go off on a rant there, but there's no "quick fix" and all potential action has repercussions most folks don't even think about.

As for banning smoking in all public places? Ok. If they're acutally "public". But if a business proprietor has the ability to admit or turn you away, it's not a "public" place and I don't have the first clue about how a city government can legislate smoking away unless they tie it to the renewal of liquor licences (or some such thing). In any case, that practice doesn't actually cause folks to cut down on smoking. It just inconveniences the smokers- which, of course, results in public backlash from the minority who already feels inconvenienced (if not persecuted).

The whole thing is just a nasty vicious cycle with no end in sight.

Redsfaithful
03-29-2005, 02:27 AM
It's not really about the customers imo, it's about the employees of the establishments that allow smoking. They shouldn't have to be exposed to secondhand smoke simply because of where they work.

SteelSD
03-29-2005, 02:43 AM
It's not really about the customers imo, it's about the employees of the establishments that allow smoking. They shouldn't have to be exposed to secondhand smoke simply because of where they work.

And they didn't know that the establishment allowed smoking before they applied for and accepted employment there?

Folks hold smokers responsible for their decision to smoke. Why can't we hold non-smokers responsible for their decisions as well?

DoogMinAmo
03-29-2005, 02:54 AM
Why should 80 percent of the population be compromised by 20 percent. Other than drunk brawls and driving, excessive drinking was never seen as a habit that harmed others directly. Secondhand smoke is a very real problem, and this is an opportunity to cut back on it greatly.

And as far as inconveniencing those who smoke, and it not really contributing to a reduction of habit, I have many friends who started smoking because it was always prevalent, and it became equated with social gatherings (ie the community smoke break). I have employees who smoke not to satisfy so regretable a habit, but to sit around and gossip. Taking away the consistency will reduce consumption by default.

And just because the government taxes the hell out of smokers, and makes a pretty penny off of it, does not mean it is ok or right by any means. They should find another source of income that does not jeopardize the health of the masses.

As far as telling owners what they can and can not do in their establishments, if you view the issue strictly from the point of view of health and safety, then it is not such a stretch. In another thread someone made a parallel between a smoking ban and fire code regulations. Both are considered costly expenses that threaten an operation, but the end far and above justifies the means.

When I lived in San Francisco, it was amazing. There were absolutley no deterrents. We would go out all the time, and it made for a healthier social scene. Now as it stands, people will avoid going out for maybe one or two quick drinks because they don't want to come home smelly. I know this, because I hear it all the time, and I use the excuse myself.

The problem is such small institutions are hesitant to lose what business they have, because they feel there is nothing to gain from going smoke free. The reality might very well be that people will still go to the local pub for its convenience, but just not smoke there. Additionally, more local people might be encouraged to go out.

This is an opportunity for Cincinnati to reverse its Twainian conservatism (the infamous ten year delay) and be ahead of the times. Instead of viewing this as a deterrent, it should be viewed as a marketing possibility, a distinguishing characteristic of a family-values city.

Side Note: Oddly enough, Kentucky is the number smoking state in the country, but both Lexington and Louisville have passed the ban. Why so hesitant here?

DoogMinAmo
03-29-2005, 03:03 AM
And they didn't know that the establishment allowed smoking before they applied for and accepted employment there?

Folks hold smokers responsible for their decision to smoke. Why can't we hold non-smokers responsible for their decisions as well?

One smoker in a room with ten non-smokers has turned what should be a non smoking establishment into a smoking one, where 11 people are now exposed to toxins. It is not like smokers huddle together and only smoke there, and nonsmokers are trying to take over that space. If you look in a bar, hardly 50% of the people are smoking directly, but all are indirectly.

If smokers could literally smoke in a bubble, then they could do it where ever they wanted, it is just that wherever one smokes, that has now become a place that an adamant nonsmoker can not go.

So instead of ostracising a minority that partakes in an unhealthy habit, you are advocating alienating a majority that is trying to take care of their health, doesn't seem to make much sense to me.

TeamCasey
03-29-2005, 07:16 AM
I continually hear folks complain about eating at restaurants that allow smoking. Don't eat there then. Complaints about the haze at bars that allow smoking. Don't drink there then. Want to avoid second-hand smoke? Ok. But why ask the government to make it a virtually smoke-free world when you don't have the discipline to avoid places where smoking is allowed?

Exactly! If the restaurant/bar owner were losing business because of smoke, they'd have to change to improve their business. That's how the decision should be made. Leave big brother out of it.

Redsfaithful
03-29-2005, 08:18 AM
And they didn't know that the establishment allowed smoking before they applied for and accepted employment there?

Folks hold smokers responsible for their decision to smoke. Why can't we hold non-smokers responsible for their decisions as well?

People will endure health hazards at their place of occupation, occassionally the government has to step in and regulate things. I'm fine with that.

It really comes down to whether you believe second hand smoke is harmful. It seems like you don't, because if you did I can't imagine why you'd be so cavalier about people having to choke it down at work for their entire working lives.

No one is telling people they can't smoke with these bans, they're simply being told where they're allowed to do it. We already do that all over the place, airplanes, work space, most public spaces. This isn't any different.

I remember people whining when smoking was banned at Riverfront. It's really tough for me to be sympathetic when someone's harmful habit impacts everyone around them. Everyone has bad habits so I certainly don't hate smokers, but there's no inalienable right that they be allowed to do it in public.

For everyone crying free market, the government regulates things all the time for our safety. Should the restaurant owner be able to choose how clean he keeps his kitchen? I mean the market will decide whether or not it wants clean food right?

GAC
03-29-2005, 09:02 AM
I think it would be a good idea to ban smoking all together.
Smoking kills. Think about it.

So does drinking, drugs, and a host of other social practices that people in our society partake of, and that lead to severe health problems/death.

Where, if any, do we draw the line?

How about chewing tobacco?

I think that establishments that want to have smoking should have to separate the two, and also provide an enclosed and adequate venilation system for those that want to smoke. Isn't that a fair compromise?

But the problem is (and I see this at work everyday) is that all the non-smokers go into the smoking breakrooms anyway just to socialize. It's like they don't want to sit separately from their smoking buddies. :lol:

remdog
03-29-2005, 09:08 AM
California was in the forefront of the non-smoking movement and I think a look at the results is warrented.

I'm a non-smoker (never have, never will) but I also am pretty much of the persuasion that less regulation is better regulation. I agreed then and still agree that government should mostly keep it's nose out of private business.

Ironically, when the smoking ban in restaurants went into effect, I had a small, part-time business proving a cigar program to restaurants and lounges. 'Cigar Bars' were very hot then and it was a very profitable sideline. That ended in a heartbeat when the clock struck 12:01 AM on Jan. 1 so, even though I don't smoke, it had a direct impact on my income.

Approximately six years later here is what the restaurant scene is like in California: business is booming, the enviroment is much more pleasant for all (even smokers) and no one considers it unusual not to able to smoke in a restaurant. It's become 'normal' not to smoke in this setting. People that smoke have accepted and adapted to it. (shrug) It takes a little time but, gradually, non-smoking in a bar or restaurant becomes the norm and smoking in an establishment becomes the aberation that it is (less than half the population smokes).

I'm so used to this that when I go out of state I find myself initially shocked to see people smoking in a restaurant or to have to answer the 'smoking or non-smoking' question. Then, I realize that I'm not in California anymore and I just chuckle to myself.

Honestly folks, even though I was against it at the time, I have to admit that this is one regulation that has made this a better place to live. Ohioan's can (and should) do what they want (so I didn't vote in the poll) but that's my experience with the program.

Rem

TeamCasey
03-29-2005, 09:12 AM
.

Roy Tucker
03-29-2005, 09:21 AM
I'd like to see places of smoking be licensed like places that sell alcohol are licensed (at least in the state of Ohio).

I don't agree with the premise that allowing smoking is the default case and that people who don't like smoking have to seek out places that disallow smoking. It should be the other way around.

I think that people who smoke should be the ones that have to go find the establishments, be it bars, restaurants, etc., that allow smoking. And that those places have to get a license to allow smoking on their premises.

TeamCasey
03-29-2005, 09:28 AM
I'd like to see places of smoking be licensed like places that sell alcohol are licensed (at least in the state of Ohio).

I don't agree with the premise that allowing smoking is the default case and that people who don't like smoking have to seek out places that disallow smoking. It should be the other way around.

I think that people who smoke should be the ones that have to go find the establishments, be it bars, restaurants, etc., that allow smoking. And that those places have to get a license to allow smoking on their premises.

That wouldn't bother me, personally. It's simply more regulation IMO ..... but it would allow the business owner to decide.

Currently, any business can go smoke-free without involving the government or getting a license or anything. Why don't they?

RedFanAlways1966
03-29-2005, 09:33 AM
Interesting read.. all of your opinions.

I don't like the government telling people what to do in this regard. I don't smoke. I will not eat in a place that allows it. That is my decision. There are some places that I wish did not allow smoking, but that is their decision and not mine (or the gov't).

We allow people on motorcycles to ride w/out a helmet... and all of a sudden we want to ban public smoking? Makes sense to me... NOT. I can ride my motorcycle, w/out helmet, to eat in a non-smoking (by law) place. Mhhhh. I can ride my motorcylce, w/out helmet, but I cannot puff on a Camel while driving slowly thru the downtown streets. Mhhhh. Motorcycles themselves are more dangerous than cigarettes IMO, but I don't think they should be banned by the gov't.

People need to make their own decisions. I have told "rude smokers" (you know the difference) about their rudeness. Doesn't bother me. But I should not tell a "considerate smoker" how it is. I should go elsewhere if that smoker is not being rude (you know the diff.).

I don't need Big Brother!!

remdog
03-29-2005, 09:44 AM
.....I don't agree with the premise that allowing smoking is the default case and that people who don't like smoking have to seek out places that disallow smoking. It should be the other way around.

I think that people who smoke should be the ones that have to go find the establishments, be it bars, restaurants, etc., that allow smoking.....

I would tend to agree with that statement since far less than a majority of the population smokes. I think part of the argument against regulating smoking in establishments is that the owners fear that they will lose business. In California, the reality was that nothing changed. The most popular bars and restaurants remained the most popular bars and restaurants. People still wanted to go out and they did. Since everyone was under the same rule, the playing field didn't materially change except for the 'window dressing'

Rem

gonelong
03-29-2005, 09:52 AM
Why should 80 percent of the population be compromised by 20 percent.

Ban everything. Yippe.

When you get done banning my 20% I am coming for yours out of pure spite.

GL

Johnny Footstool
03-29-2005, 10:43 AM
Currently, any business can go smoke-free without involving the government or getting a license or anything. Why don't they?

Excellent point.

There are a couple of smoke-free restaurants in KC -- they're constantly packed. Of course, the crowds consist mostly of suburbanites with kids. The singles crowd avoids those places like the plague.

There is a market for each type of place. I don't think it's right for the government to force bar and restaurant owners to cater to one type of customer and ostracize another.

DoogMinAmo
03-29-2005, 10:58 AM
Ban everything. Yippe.

When you get done banning my 20% I am coming for yours out of pure spite.

GL


Why is it so important to you to smoke in a restaurant/ bar? Is it the habit that controls you, or truly the principle of the "right to smoke?"

If it was just the habit, why could you not smoke elsewhere? Maybe if there were designated smoke rooms? Just brainstorming out loud here.

As far as the right to smoke, what about my right to not smoke? If I am in an establishment first, and a smoker enters, all of a sudden "my" space has been invaded. Does it really become a "I was here first" proposal in order to succeed? I hope not.

Is smoke was contained, it would be a moot point. But it affects everyone around it, so I think it should be up to the governing body to look after the best health interests of the majority. Just my 2 cents.

westofyou
03-29-2005, 11:27 AM
reland Celebrates First Smoke - Free Year
By REUTERS

Published: March 28, 2005

Filed at 8:55 a.m. ET

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland can breathe a smoke-free sigh of relief Tuesday when it marks the first anniversary of a pioneering ban on smoking, the success of which has inspired similar moves elsewhere.

The ban on smoking in pubs, restaurants and workplaces, introduced on March 29, 2004, had been expected to meet with widespread resistance in a country where the pub culture of a drink and a smoke were considered part of its lifeblood.

Instead, the sight of smokers puffing away outside pub doors has become familiar across Ireland, and the only haze wafting through bars these days comes from having one drink too many.

Similar laws had been introduced in cities and states like New York and California, but Ireland was the first country to introduce a nationwide ban. Malta, Norway and Italy have since followed suit.

``It's healthier,'' said bartender and non-smoker Paddy Martin, pouring pints at Foley's Bar, close to the Irish parliament buildings in Dublin. ``I feel better when I go home.''

Anti-smoking lobby group ASH reckons tobacco kills six times as many people in Ireland as road accidents, work accidents, drugs, murder, suicide and AIDS combined, and is a massive drain on health resources.

Professor Luke Clancy, chairman of ASH's Irish branch, has said the ban could become the ``health initiative of the century.''

QUIET PINT

But not everyone has welcomed it.

Some pub owners and drinks firms blame the ban for a drop-off in sales -- bar revenues fell 6.3 percent in the first nine months of 2004. Cigarette sales dropped about 18 percent last year compared to a 10 percent fall the previous year.

The subdued atmosphere in Foley's Bar -- where only a handful of people were drinking quietly Saturday night in a scene repeated in many other pubs outside Dublin's main tourist spots -- seemed to back the claims.

But the decline of the Irish pub has more to do with high prices and lifestyle changes than the smoking ban, locals say.

``It's the smoke and the drink,'' said Foley's Martin, handing over a half-pint of Guinness, which at 2.60 euros ($3.38) is one euro more expensive than buying a similar size can in an off-license.

Alcoholic beverages -- some 82 percent above the eurozone average -- cost more in Ireland than in any other European Union country, according to figures from Eurostat published last year. The newly affluent Irish, enjoying the fruits of Ireland's Celtic Tiger boom in the late 1990s, increasingly choose a glass of wine in their own home over a pub-poured beer.

But for those smokers and drinkers who venture out for a taste of Ireland's famed ``craic'' (fun), the smoking ban can have some benefits.

``I've met more people standing outside and having a cig,'' said Sue Taylor, visiting Dublin from Yorkshire in England, standing outside a pub in the popular Temple Bar area.

``But I'd be barred from every pub in Britain if they introduced it because I wouldn't do it.''


http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/international/international-ireland-smoking.html



NATIONAL DESK
National Briefing | New England: Rhode Island: Public Smoking Ban


Bars, restaurants and businesses became smoke-free, making Rhode Island the seventh state to ban indoor smoking in most public places. The ban went into effect at midnight even as some lawmakers and bar owners were mobilizing to revise it or challenge it in the courts. Rhode Island joins California, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts and New York. The law covers thousands of bars and restaurants and all indoor workplaces. But it extends the deadline to Oct. 1, 2006, for bars that have 10 or fewer employees and groups formed as private social organizations.

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9C02E1DD133DF931A35750C0A9639C8B 63

RBA
03-29-2005, 11:31 AM
Poll: Smoking Ban in Cincinnati


If I change one letter and remove the ":", this topic takes on a whole new meaning. :eek:

Brutus_the_Red
03-29-2005, 11:38 AM
As far as the right to smoke, what about my right to not smoke? If I am in an establishment first, and a smoker enters, all of a sudden "my" space has been invaded. Does it really become a "I was here first" proposal in order to succeed? I hope not.

But it's not "your" space. It's the owner of the establishments "space." He didn't actively solicit your business, you chose to enter his store, and thus you should be exposed to whatever the owner decides to allow. And if you don't like it, you have the right to never give him your business.

As a hypothetical, loud music give's me a headache, does that mean i can start a petition to get BW3's and all other bars to remove their jukeboxes? The loud music puts a lot of strain on your hearing that if around enough, could permanantley deteriorate your hearing. Most reasonable people would tell me i could, but that it wouldn't work. It's the businesses choice to have them in there and i could just not go in. Eat somewhere quieter. But what about the poor employees? Being in that loud environment all the time will eventually do damage to their hearing? Why don't we regulate that?

This is essentially the same arguement as a smoking ban, but for some reason is just seems sillier when you exchange smoking for loud music? Why is that? Both are destructive to anyone around it. Both are something that would cause greater health benefit to the masses. But why are they different?

reds1869
03-29-2005, 11:42 AM
As someone who is moving to Cincinnati in a few months, I have to say I am opposed to the ban. They have already enacted a similar ban here in Columbus and it has done bad things to restaraunts and bars in teh city while being a goldmine to those in the suburbs. I enjoy a smoke free environment and choose to go to them when I have the option; I just don't think the government should decided what a business owner does on their own property.

Redsfaithful
03-29-2005, 11:59 AM
They have already enacted a similar ban here in Columbus and it has done bad things to restaraunts and bars in teh city while being a goldmine to those in the suburbs.

I live in Columbus and I'd like to see data backing that up.

DunnersGrl44
03-29-2005, 12:03 PM
I live in Columbus and I'd like to see data backing that up.
I don't know about the suburbs. But i do know that it has been hurting business enough that they are considering making exceptions for establishments that sell over 50% of their total sales on alcohol. I work in a restaurant/bar and there are a lot of people not happy with it, because we are in the middle of a mall and we have no patio doors for people to go outside.

CbusRed
03-29-2005, 12:10 PM
I live in Columbus and I'd like to see data backing that up.

I think its too early to tell.

I will say that the city is eventually going to have to do something about ciggarrette litter outside the bars, walk up to any bar and check out the ground directly in front of it.

I would say the majority of bars are either directly defying the ban, or making strides to do other things to keep their smoking customers coming back, i.e. heated patios, ect..

I myself am a casual smoker, and go out alot. I play in a band that plays in different bars, and I must say that this ban doesnt bother me nearly as much as I originally thought it would. Maybe im not as "addicted" to cigarettes as other smokers, but I see no problem in having to go outside to smoke. For one, it helps me cut back, and two, you dont wake up the next morning with burning lungs from breathing second hand smoke all night.

SteelSD
03-29-2005, 12:19 PM
Why should 80 percent of the population be compromised by 20 percent. Other than drunk brawls and driving, excessive drinking was never seen as a habit that harmed others directly. Secondhand smoke is a very real problem, and this is an opportunity to cut back on it greatly.

Then don't eat at restaurants or drink at bars that allow smoking.


And as far as inconveniencing those who smoke, and it not really contributing to a reduction of habit, I have many friends who started smoking because it was always prevalent, and it became equated with social gatherings (ie the community smoke break). I have employees who smoke not to satisfy so regretable a habit, but to sit around and gossip. Taking away the consistency will reduce consumption by default.

Actually, it'll just reduce the places at which smoking occurs. Same thing happened when the government banned alcohol.


And just because the government taxes the hell out of smokers, and makes a pretty penny off of it, does not mean it is ok or right by any means. They should find another source of income that does not jeopardize the health of the masses.

Never said that taxation justifies smoking. But I can guarantee that if tobacco is outlawed, you're going to see a bajillion non-smokers complaining about how their state and/or local taxes suddenly went up.


As far as telling owners what they can and can not do in their establishments, if you view the issue strictly from the point of view of health and safety, then it is not such a stretch. In another thread someone made a parallel between a smoking ban and fire code regulations. Both are considered costly expenses that threaten an operation, but the end far and above justifies the means.

There's no comparison between second-hand smoke and fire code (or food safety) regulations. You know upfront whether or not an establishment allows smoking. But you can't see if the proper number of fire extinguishers is kept in a kitchen. Nor is there any way to know if the food stored at that location is stored properly.

But you know whether or not an establishment allows smoking when you see the first ashtray. The only way your position makes sense is if you claim people are too dumb to figure that out.


When I lived in San Francisco, it was amazing. There were absolutley no deterrents. We would go out all the time, and it made for a healthier social scene. Now as it stands, people will avoid going out for maybe one or two quick drinks because they don't want to come home smelly. I know this, because I hear it all the time, and I use the excuse myself.

Not going to a bar that allows smoking is a choice you have the freedom to exercise.


The problem is such small institutions are hesitant to lose what business they have, because they feel there is nothing to gain from going smoke free. The reality might very well be that people will still go to the local pub for its convenience, but just not smoke there. Additionally, more local people might be encouraged to go out.

And yet, there are plenty of good businesspeople who allow folks to smoke in their establishments and those establishments thrive. In fact, I've been in bars that allow smoking and the places are packed to capacity. You can't get any more productive than PACKED TO CAPACITY.

I'm seeing a trend of "Well there's no smoking here and the places are packed." But that doesn't mean there's a causality link between not allowing smoking and packed bars or restaurants.


This is an opportunity for Cincinnati to reverse its Twainian conservatism (the infamous ten year delay) and be ahead of the times. Instead of viewing this as a deterrent, it should be viewed as a marketing possibility, a distinguishing characteristic of a family-values city.

This is not a "family values" issue.


Side Note: Oddly enough, Kentucky is the number smoking state in the country, but both Lexington and Louisville have passed the ban. Why so hesitant here?

I don't live in Cinci, so I can't answer that question. What I can theorize is that maybe Lexington and Louisville local govenments don't trust their own citizens.

Catch22
03-29-2005, 12:22 PM
For everyone crying free market, the government regulates things all the time for our safety. Should the restaurant owner be able to choose how clean he keeps his kitchen? I mean the market will decide whether or not it wants clean food right?

Beat me to it - I was going to mention the same point. We have no problem with 'Big Brother' regulating how food should be kept and prepared in the interest of public health. Why should smoking be any different? It's kinda funny - cause if you were to picture the cook at your favorite establishment smoking over top of the stove while he cooked your food, you would be revolted. But if someone were to light up right beside you while you were eating the food, suddenly it's their right to smoke where they want and you should have thought twice before choosing to eat there? Personally, I'd rather eat the ashes from the cigarrette than inhale the smoke - much healthier for you.

As far as tax revenue go - up here in Soviet Canuckistan (where the government still pays for health care), the governments have much more incentive to ban smoking. The revenue they lose from taxes will more than be made up by the savings in health care expenses. Down in the USA, where your health care is on your own dime, the government doesn't stand to save as much money.

I think smoking should be banned in public - everywhere. You want to smoke, do it on your own house where you are the only one to be affected by it.

traderumor
03-29-2005, 12:23 PM
I do not think smoking should be banned until, at the very least, alcohol is banned.

However, since smoking tobacco products in public is legal, shouldn't the ACLU be defending the rights of smokers to not have government interference in private establishments with their right to smoke?

SteelSD
03-29-2005, 12:25 PM
One smoker in a room with ten non-smokers has turned what should be a non smoking establishment into a smoking one, where 11 people are now exposed to toxins. It is not like smokers huddle together and only smoke there, and nonsmokers are trying to take over that space. If you look in a bar, hardly 50% of the people are smoking directly, but all are indirectly.

Then why are the non-smokers in that bar?


If smokers could literally smoke in a bubble, then they could do it where ever they wanted, it is just that wherever one smokes, that has now become a place that an adamant nonsmoker can not go.

The "adamant nonsmoker" has no God-given right to go to there in the first place.


So instead of ostracising a minority that partakes in an unhealthy habit, you are advocating alienating a majority that is trying to take care of their health, doesn't seem to make much sense to me.

No. I'm speaking to the concept of intelligent rational choice. If you choose to enter an environment you believe to be hazardous to your health, it is you who are doing harm to yourself.

REDREAD
03-29-2005, 12:26 PM
They've done the ban in Columbus, and are now thinking of repealing it.

There's smaller municipalities inside Columbus that don't have the ban.. Restuarants/bars in those areas are now seeing a huge increase in business relative to Columbus due to the ban (at least according to the local news).. Also, many bars are openly defying the ban (again, going on the news saying they'll just keep on paying the fine).

If there's a market for a non-smoking bar, someone should open one up and get rich.
(Yes, there may be a market for one, that wasn't sarcastic).

But I oppose more government restrictions. We already have enough of those.

Plus, I think the second hand smoke stats are very misleading. Surely, every nonsmoker who dies of lung cancer can't blame second hand smoke.

SteelSD
03-29-2005, 12:27 PM
Beat me to it - I was going to mention the same point. We have no problem with 'Big Brother' regulating how food should be kept and prepared in the interest of public health. Why should smoking be any different?

Because food storage and preparation is an invisible risk. You are not privy to storage and preparation condition information. And even if you were, you'd need to be an expert in the field to determine whether or not said storage and prep conditions were truly harmful.

But you know if smoking is allowed the moment you see an ashtray.

HUGE difference of circumstance.

REDREAD
03-29-2005, 12:31 PM
I live in Columbus and I'd like to see data backing that up.

I don't think they've done a formal study, but you have bar owners on the news openly defying the ban. Their patrons are donating money into jars to help pay the fines.

Also, as I said, the pockets of non-Columbus incorporated areas inside the city are seeing a LOT more business. The day the ban went into effect, a TGIF owner in a smoking zone said it was the busiest day he ever had.

Johnny Footstool
03-29-2005, 01:04 PM
I don't think they've done a formal study, but you have bar owners on the news openly defying the ban. Their patrons are donating money into jars to help pay the fines.

The same thing is happening in Lawrence, KS (home of KU). Bar patrons are chipping in to help pay fines. It's been so effective that the city council has considered allowing police to shut down any bar allowing smoking.

Sounds like Prohibition all over again.

pedro
03-29-2005, 01:17 PM
The problem with leaving it up to the establishment is that almost no business owner will risk excluding potential clients. How many no smoking bars do you know of?

However, I can really see how in someplace like Columbus, where people can choose go somewhere outside city limits, it could hurt business.

As such, it would probably be better handled at the state level or not at all.

gonelong
03-29-2005, 01:24 PM
Why is it so important to you to smoke in a restaurant/ bar? Is it the habit that controls you, or truly the principle of the "right to smoke?"

I smoke about 4-5 cigars a year. I don't believe I have ever smoked in a restuarant in my entire life. In fact, my wife is very uncomfortable around smoke.

The argument is not about me or you, but about rights in general.


If it was just the habit, why could you not smoke elsewhere? Maybe if there were designated smoke rooms? Just brainstorming out loud here.

Why should people have to smoke elsewhere If the establishment wants to allow smoking? Why don't you find a place that is non-smoking?


As far as the right to smoke, what about my right to not smoke? If I am in an establishment first, and a smoker enters, all of a sudden "my" space has been invaded. Does it really become a "I was here first" proposal in order to succeed? I hope not.

Its not "your space", its the restuarant's.

Nobody is forcing you to go to a restuarant.

The restuarant should decide what goes on at its establishments.


Is smoke was contained, it would be a moot point. But it affects everyone around it, so I think it should be up to the governing body to look after the best health interests of the majority. Just my 2 cents.

It doesn't affect you if you don't go to the places that allow smoking. Stay at home or go elsewhere. Better yet, open up a place of your own that is non-smoking. I'd sincerely bet it would do gang-buster business.

Look out for yourself, the government does an incredibly poor job of looking out for you.

GL

RosieRed
03-29-2005, 01:35 PM
However, I can really see how in someplace like Columbus, where people can choose go somewhere outside city limits, it could hurt business.

As such, it would probably be better handled at the state level or not at all.

I have to think there's a similar risk of lost business involved if Cincinnati does ban smoking. People can just go out in Northern Kentucky or in the suburbs, instead of in Cincinnati. (And many people already do that.)

remdog
03-29-2005, 02:02 PM
I was about to make the same point as Pedro. I think one of the reasons this program works so well in California is that it is state-wide. Even if it were state-wide in Ohio, Cincinnati might fare differently being so close to the borders of two other states.

Rem

remdog
03-29-2005, 02:06 PM
Boy, I see a lot of people on this thread saying, "stay at home if you don't want to smoke". How about, "stay at home if you do want to smoke". Same argument, different side of the coin.

That should bring some flack.

Rem

Johnny Footstool
03-29-2005, 02:30 PM
Boy, I see a lot of people on this thread saying, "stay at home if you don't want to smoke". How about, "stay at home if you do want to smoke". Same argument, different side of the coin.

I agree. The "stay at home" argument works both ways.

I never agree with the "do it my way or don't do it at all" crowd. I'm in favor of offering more choices, not banning one choice.

Chip R
03-29-2005, 03:00 PM
I'm not a smoker, although I do enjoy an ocassional cigar. I think businesses should have the right to make their own rules about this. I agree it would drive a lot of people to NKY for entertainment - although most people go there anyway. But I think if people want to go to bars/restaurants with or without this policy, both will thrive.

SteelSD
03-29-2005, 03:07 PM
Boy, I see a lot of people on this thread saying, "stay at home if you don't want to smoke". How about, "stay at home if you do want to smoke". Same argument, different side of the coin.

That should bring some flack.

Rem

Nah. Not flack. Not at all. I have no problem with rational human beings being asked to make choices.

What I have a problem with is the idea that establishment patrons bear no responsiblity for putting themselves in a situation to inhale second-hand smoke when they knowingly enter a restaurant or bar that allows smoking.

There are options that don't involve non-smokers staying home.

But right now it appears that the prevelant Government anti-smoking attitude is that non-smokers are just too dumb to make those choices on their own. And business owners are too stupid to manage their own restaurants and bars in a way they feel is most profitable. And, of course, employees are mentally incapable of figuring out that smoking is allowed when they apply for a job.

Personally, I don't buy it. Right now, the smoking bans equal nothing more than State and local government lip service to the non-smoking majority who finds smoking offensive while those same officals have no way to wean themselves off the tobacco tax teat. It's political, hypocritical, and has far less to do with health than people are led to believe.

What would impress me is a government entity that enacts a public smoking ban and then refuses to accept any proceeds from the distribution and sale of tobacco products. But if that happened, you just wait for the non-smokers to raise holy heck about taxes going up and/or why budgetary cuts are necessary. It's no coincidence that states that have enacted smoking bans also have some of the highest per-pack taxes in the country.

There's just so much more to this that whether or not Person X feels that they have a right to go to Establishment Y without having to deal with smokers.

Redsfaithful
03-29-2005, 03:15 PM
And, of course, employees are mentally incapable of figuring out that smoking is allowed when they apply for a job.

With this rationale an employer could abuse their employees in any number of ways, as long as the employee knew about it before being hired. I'm glad our country doesn't work that way.

SteelSD
03-29-2005, 03:24 PM
With this rationale an employer could abuse their employees in any number of ways, as long as the employee knew about it before being hired. I'm glad our country doesn't work that way.

Huh?

You're equating a person who knowingly applies for a job at a smoking establishment with employer "abuse"?

Are the waitresses at Hooters too dumb to figure out that they're being mentally abused by virtue of having to wear skimpy outfits as a condition of their employment? Or is it more plausible that they have a reasonable expectation of working conditions when they voluntarily accept a position with that company?

Are we now saying that folks don't have the intelligence to figure out the difference between legally permissible working conditions and true abuse?

C'mon, man.

CbusRed
03-29-2005, 03:34 PM
Huh?

You're equating a person who knowingly applies for a job at a smoking establishment with employer "abuse"?

Are the waitresses at Hooters too dumb to figure out that they're being mentally abused by virtue of having to wear skimpy outfits as a condition of their employment? Or is it more plausible that they have a reasonable expectation of working conditions when they voluntarily accept a position with that company?

Are we now saying that folks don't have the intelligence to figure out the difference between legally permissible working conditions and true abuse?

C'mon, man.


Its just a culture shift, just like many things...

Think about it, there once was a time when it was considered ok to beat your wife, just as it was once ok to hate black people. sociologically speaking of course.

But those things changed. The only thing that makes this a little harder to accept is the abruptness.

SteelSD
03-29-2005, 03:46 PM
Its just a culture shift, just like many things...

Think about it, there once was a time when it was considered ok to beat your wife, just as it was once ok to hate black people. sociologically speaking of course.

But those things changed. The only thing that makes this a little harder to accept is the abruptness.

I'm just going to stay away from the wife beating and race-hate comments there. And frankly, active physical abuse has nothing to do with the avoidance of circumstances one finds to be displeasurable or unhealthy.

The Federal Government once did away with drinking very abruptly. Can you tell me how that whole thing worked out?

Roy Tucker
03-29-2005, 03:49 PM
Yeah, I have problems with the whole schizophrenia our government has with tobacco.

If tobacco were a new substance coming onto the market, I seriously doubt it would be allowed. I think that its a given that tobacco has serious health consequences. And second-hand smoke has health consequences as well, the degree of which is debatable. But it certainly isn't a health plus to be around a bunch of smokers.

But tobacco has a long and storied history and is pretty firmly ingrained into society. Tobacco taxes and subsidies are a way of life. I think, much like alcohol, any total ban on the substance just wouldn't work. Too many people smoke.

I come from a family where both of my folks smoked (and my dad died of lung cancer) and all 3 of my siblings smoke. I do't smoke because I played sports in HS and smoking was cause for immediately getting kicked off the team. I'm glad that I never started because I've seen the struggles that my siblings have gone through trying to quit (with varying degrees of success). I know I'd be just the same.

As a family, we pretty well stick to smoke-free restaurants. I'm glad places like Applebees have gone nationwide with their no-smoking bans. Doesn't seem to have hurt their business. With some smoking/non-smoking restautants it gets a little frustrating. Generally speaking, the non-smoking sections fill up fast while seating will be available in the smoking sections. If this happens more than once or twice at a place, we just don't go back.

When I go out to bars with friends, I just know that we'll be in smoking plaecs so I don't take in my jacket or anything. When I get home, I dump my clothes in the washer.

But, just like alcohol, smoking is an adult kind of behavior with potential serious consequences to those who are around users, and, just like alcohol, shouldn't be allowed at just any public place. At least in my NSHO.

I don't like government interference in it, but I'm not sure just public pressure will cause businesses to change.

CbusRed
03-29-2005, 04:09 PM
The Federal Government once did away with drinking very abruptly. Can you tell me how that whole thing worked out?

For what reasons did they do away with drinking though?

Blimpie
03-29-2005, 04:17 PM
Exactly! If the restaurant/bar owner were losing business because of smoke, they'd have to change to improve their business. That's how the decision should be made. Leave big brother out of it.
FWIW.......I am a non-smoker who opposes smoking bans. I just wanted to offer some thoughts based upon Lexington's nearly two year stint with a smoking ban...

After months of debate, our city council finally passed their own version of the indoor smoking ban in July 2003. It took a while to quantify the economic impact of the ban on the various restaurants and bars in the area. However, once they had enough meaningful data, the analysis showed results that were far more devastating to businesses than was expected. Some bars showed a 60% drop in receipts almost immediately and began laying off their employees. Because gratuities at these establishments diminished proportionally, those who still had jobs were also taking a huge hit. Some bingo parlors, cigar bars and other legalized gaming clubs had to close down completely. Other places (that have brass poles in them) have refused to enforce the ban or to pay the fines, and thus, have found themselves in litigation.

As a means of offering an "olive branch" of sorts to the suffering businesses, the city of Lexington passed legislation in 2004 that allowed these properties to extend their business operations for alcoholic sales by two hours per night (except for Sundays). Sounds simple, right? Well, now our police department is complaining that they are having to pay far more overtime to handle the extended "witching hours" for nabbing drunk drivers leaving bars. Guess who the police department is hitting up for more money now that their budget has been compromised? That's right, the city.

The true impact of the ban now being known, we are seeing petitions floating around Lexington that will attempt to get the whole issue on a referendum ballot in November. Obviously, I enjoy NOT smelling like an ashtray when I come home from a bar or restaurant. I just think that the issue is not totally black or white. Aside from the obvious health issues, there are far more factors to consider.

Blimpie
03-29-2005, 04:33 PM
Its just a culture shift, just like many things...

Think about it, there once was a time when it was considered ok to beat your wife, just as it was once ok to hate black people. sociologically speaking of course.

But those things changed. The only thing that makes this a little harder to accept is the abruptness.Really? I must have missed that one in the old American History book...

TC81190
03-29-2005, 11:14 PM
Ban. Lung cancer sucks. They want it, they can have it. But don't shovel on to me, too.

SunDeck
03-29-2005, 11:27 PM
There are spillover costs associated with smoking. All of our health insurance premiums are affected by it. We all know about second hand smoke, too. I think the problem is that the people who smoke (who are causing the spillover costs) are not paying a high enough price to compensate the rest of us. We are the ones subsidizing the costs of their habit. Therefore, either we eradicate smoking or we tax smoking at a rate that creates more equity.

Ban it, tax it- whatever it takes, I suppose. However smoking is no longer acceptable across the board, like it was when I was a kid. The higher the education and economic level, I suppose, the less likely it is that you will smoke. Our working class is not getting the message and that bothers me because I don't want to tax them any more than they are already taxed. So, perhaps banning is better public policy since the "cost" to those people will be that they just can't smoke indoors.

FWIW, we just instituted a smoking ban here and no businesses have failed as a result of it. Then again, we don't have other urban localities around us that people will go to for a night out. Bloomington is basically it. I can see how smokers would quit going to bars in Cincinnati and head to Newport or something...but then again isn't everyone doing that already?

SteelSD
03-29-2005, 11:28 PM
Ban. Lung cancer sucks. They want it, they can have it. But don't shovel on to me, too.

What are you doing that's causing you to be at risk for lung cancer?

CTA513
03-29-2005, 11:55 PM
Alcohol & Smoking Ban in Cincinnati :thumbup:

I also want a ban on excessive perfume and cologne.

While Im at it, ban all sharp objects in Cincinnati.

:beerme:

:evil:

Redsfaithful
03-30-2005, 12:05 AM
Love that slippery slope argument. Gets me every time.

SteelSD
03-30-2005, 12:23 AM
There are spillover costs associated with smoking. All of our health insurance premiums are affected by it. We all know about second hand smoke, too. I think the problem is that the people who smoke (who are causing the spillover costs) are not paying a high enough price to compensate the rest of us. We are the ones subsidizing the costs of their habit. Therefore, either we eradicate smoking or we tax smoking at a rate that creates more equity.

Um...Cuyahoga County received nearly 300 Million Dollars last year from cigarette taxes. The New York State cigarette tax is $1.55 per pack. IMAGINE how much money that is in NY State coffers.

Smokers pay higher insurance premiums than non-smokers. Smokers, on the average live shorter lives, and longer lives could potentially negate any perceived health care cost benefit. Local law enforcement will cost more because of the additional enforcement and administrative costs associated with a public (or total) smoking ban.

Nicotine is a drug. Smokers are drug addicts. Alcohol is a drug. Alcoholics are drug addicts. Do you know of a ton of addicts that won't search out their drug of choice regardless of the illegality of such an endeavor? There's far more cost associate with enforcing a smoking ban than there is to regulate tobacco distribution and sales. FAR more cost.

You think insurance companies are going to suddenly lower rates if smoking is outlawed? Uh-uh.

The reality is that governments get addicted to revenue in the same way smokers get addicted to nicotine. And even if the public dislikes something, they won't pay more to stop it- even in a conservative State. Let me give you an example...

A few years ago, my State decided to give video lottery a try and received revenue from that enterprise. However, the legalization of video lottery state-wide was pimped to be the implementation of a "trial". And every couple of years a group gets enough signatures on a petition to put the matter to a statewide vote. The gambling faction in this state is a complete minority. The non-gambling majority should win out every time when this issue is brought to the public voting arena.

But what happens? The State Legislature lets the public know, in no uncertain terms, that their overall taxes will go up in some form to compensate for the lost revenue- including the potential creation of a State Income Tax when we don't have one already. And the fear of that cost causes the same public majority that doesn't like the behavior to vote down any measure that proposes to do away with video lottery every single time.

Money speaks louder than anything else in this society and we get reminded of that every day.

The effect of banning smoking will be more money out of your wallet to pay for the taxes no longer being received by your state and local governments. That's not a defense of smoking. It's the reality of doing away with it.


Ban it, tax it- whatever it takes, I suppose. However smoking is no longer acceptable across the board, like it was when I was a kid. The higher the education and economic level, I suppose, the less likely it is that you will smoke. Our working class is not getting the message and that bothers me because I don't want to tax them any more than they are already taxed. So, perhaps banning is better public policy since the "cost" to those people will be that they just can't smoke indoors.

Well, I think you've provided a good anti-argument to your position. Smoking isn't as accepted today as it was yesterday and the year before and the decade before that and the half-century preceeding.

Have your health care costs gone down or up?


FWIW, we just instituted a smoking ban here and no businesses have failed as a result of it. Then again, we don't have other urban localities around us that people will go to for a night out. Bloomington is basically it. I can see how smokers would quit going to bars in Cincinnati and head to Newport or something...but then again isn't everyone doing that already?

I understand that no businesses may have "failed" in your location. But can you tie business success rate to the absence of smoking? Can I equate smoking-permissive business success to that business' allowing the behavior? We can't do either without completely relying on anecdotal evidence.

And that's why our governments are performing nothing more than political lip service when they ban that behavior in public places. They have decided that inconveniencing the minority (smokers) outweighs inconveniencing the majority (non-smokers). But don't think for a second that your health, the success of businesses, or the money in your wallet is anything near the first thing on their mind.

Redsfaithful
03-30-2005, 12:28 AM
Have your health care costs gone down or up?

I guess we could have socialized medicine, like most other industrialized western nations. Then the government would be more likely to push for a healthier citizenry since it would save money.

CbusRed
03-30-2005, 12:36 AM
Really? I must have missed that one in the old American History book...

You must have not paid attention in history class.

As far as I know, blacks used to be slaves, BEATEN slaves. until Lincoln ended it. then for a while after, racism ran rampant. But our culture has shifted to accept african americans as equals, even though unfotunatley, racism still exists in some forms and probably always will in our lifetime.

People used to not get arrested for beating their wives and children either.

SandyD
03-30-2005, 12:46 AM
Steel, are there that many non-smoking establishments were you are? I have a hard time finding a non-smoking coffee shop.

Bartenders and wait staff make pretty good money. More money than a lot of them could make at another position. And there's no way there would be enough non-smoking establishments to employ them all.

Think about the amount of second hand smoke a bartender likely breathes in.

I've spent many years working in settings that allowed smoking ... freely all day. It's not that easy to just up and find another job. Move on.

Look, I'm not a big fan of government bans. But how many options are there for non-smokers to go out dancing, listen to live music, have a couple of drinks with friends? Without breathing in second hand smoke? And usually quite a bit.

Didn't vote in the poll, btw, since I don't live in the area. And I'm not sure how I would vote.

SteelSD
03-30-2005, 01:44 AM
Steel, are there that many non-smoking establishments were you are? I have a hard time finding a non-smoking coffee shop.

Yeah. Absolutely. There are a bunch of non-smoking establishments where I am. In fact, there is only one restaurant in town that allows smoking and doesn't also serve alcohol. I haven't been there in months and I don't like going there because the food isn't that good.

Now, I'm a smoker (I'm sure that'll completely surprise folks!). ;)

But, I actually request non-smoking sections when I'm with others who don't smoke (yes, I REQUEST non-smoking) when going to restaurants that allow smoking. I don't go to bars although they were a staple in college.

And yes, there are coffee shops in our town (which is driven by college patronage) that do not allow smoking. That being said, I suggest that if not allowing smoking were a significant cash-cow, you'd have coffee shops in your town that don't allow the behavior.

I'm in the middle of nowhere in a conservative town where smoking isn't prevalant except at bars. And I can guarantee you that folks who take their kids into places that allow smoking understand what they're doing.

And yes, I can go into a coffee house to order a mocha carmel latte without dealing with smoke. But I don't. I make those myself. :)


Bartenders and wait staff make pretty good money. More money than a lot of them could make at another position. And there's no way there would be enough non-smoking establishments to employ them all.

If I may say so, your writing is exceptional. Very well thought out argument and empathic tone. So please don't take my inevitable bluntness as any attempt on my part to dissuade you from making such arguments in the future (I really enjoy the effort and intelligence positioned in your posts)...

Every person I know has a choice as to where they work. Everyone. I have absolutely zero concern about an employee who chooses to work at an establishment that allows smoking. If they feel it's a risk, then they have every right to look elsewhere for employment. Right now, Federal, State, and Local governments across America don't consider their workplaces to be harmful. I'm not, at all, saying that second-hand smoke isn't harmful. Just that any person working in an establishment that allows smoking knows the risks.

If a prospective employee considers a workplace to be harmful even though the Federal, State, and Local governments allow that business to function with full backing of the law, then that employee needs to find somewhere else to work.


Think about the amount of second hand smoke a bartender likely breathes in.

Ok. Still waiting for a valid argument as to how I'm harming this bartender against his will after his voluntary acceptance of employment at an establishment he knows permits smoking.


I've spent many years working in settings that allowed smoking ... freely all day. It's not that easy to just up and find another job. Move on.

Never is easy to change anything. But I doubt that you accepted employment anywhere that didn't allow smoking and then suddenly changed to allow it. And it's unlikely that you didn't know of the working environment in regards to smoking before you applied.

Again, that's blunt. And I don't mean to sound uncaring. However, you have a responsibility to look out for your own personal well-being regardless of how you quantify that.

Me? I've actually worked for a company that didn't, at the time, allow smoking. And I'm not talking about smoking inside or outside. I'm talking about smoking PERIOD. Since I left many years ago, they've re-thought that policy and now allow smokers to join their organization because too many talented people were making conscious decisions to stay away.

Yeah. People were actually choosing to avoid that company because of their policy even though said people needed jobs.


Look, I'm not a big fan of government bans. But how many options are there for non-smokers to go out dancing, listen to live music, have a couple of drinks with friends? Without breathing in second hand smoke? And usually quite a bit.

But here's the thing...

The lack of choices aren't the fault of smokers. They're the fault of whomever has chosen to not open a non-smoking bar or dance club. Now think about that. If there is a serious need for a non-smoking dance club in your area, then you've just identified an opportunity to make a TON of money if you can back up your concept and present it to investors. In fact, there's very little in this world that is easier than getting money for a truly good idea.

Knowing that, why aren't non-smoking clubs opening up in your area advertising the crap out of the fact that folks won't have to deal with second-hand smoke? It would, at first glance, appear to be a great idea if there were truly a call for such establishments. Yet, no one does it.

That should tell you something right there.

gonelong
03-30-2005, 09:58 AM
Boy, I see a lot of people on this thread saying, "stay at home if you don't want to smoke". How about, "stay at home if you do want to smoke". Same argument, different side of the coin.

That should bring some flack.

Rem

If smokers were complaining about a non-smoking establishment I would be telling them the same thing. Either find a place that allows smoking or stay at home.

If the Government was going to FORCE businesses to allow smoking in all their establishments, my arguments would remain exactly the same. The government has no business sticking it'snose in these matters IMO, it should be up to the establishment.

Those that are are looking out for their own interests while stomping on other's rights would be the one's changing their tune.

GL

Falls City Beer
03-30-2005, 10:35 AM
I feel about smoking the same way I feel about welfare, strange as it may sound. At base, society should WANT to wean its citizens off both (productivity is good, both create lost productivity, etc), but realistically, humans and human systems are vulnerable--poor education, teen pregnancy (in the case of welfare) and addiction (in the case of smoking). The ends of eliminating both I think most can logically agree upon, but the means are a mess because human behavior is a mess.

I quit, in part, because my workplace doesn't allow it and I was beginning to feel its effects (labored breathing, difficulty sleeping). And frankly, I caved to a kind of adult peer pressure--all of my once-smoker friends had quit.

I realize this doesn't deal precisely with the issue at hand, but....some thoughts to throw out there.

(For the record, I'm not making a logical argument in the first paragraph; I am using a false analogy. But I'm suggesting there is an ends/means argument there)

PickOff
03-30-2005, 04:55 PM
Every person I know has a choice as to where they work. Everyone. I have absolutely zero concern about an employee who chooses to work at an establishment that allows smoking. If they feel it's a risk, then they have every right to look elsewhere for employment. Right now, Federal, State, and Local governments across America don't consider their workplaces to be harmful. I'm not, at all, saying that second-hand smoke isn't harmful. Just that any person working in an establishment that allows smoking knows the risks. STEEL

Well, Steel, isn't that what we are talking about? A local or state government having the right to consider second-hand smoke in the workplace harmful? I'm sure you would agree that the role of the government in part is to set workers rights standards. . .or do you feel that the "market" will simply take care of this for us? Do you support minimum wage standards? Overtime rules? Safety regulation? Worker's comp?. . .or do you believe that workers don't need any protection, that the corporate culture will do right by the workers of our great country and not take advantage?

History shows and current worker and wage conditions in many of our sectors further illustrates the need for government regulation, particularly when the decisions that our representatives make are all to often influenced by lobbying groups that pay for their votes. Lobbying groups that are made up of the very corporations that the worker needs protection against.

The tobacco industry has one of the largest lobbying regimes in the USA and the last thing on their minds is protecting the worker in a restaurant or bar from second hand smoke. If not for these lobbyist and their "pro-business" (i.e. anti-workers rights) partners many more states would already have passed anti smoking legislation in public buildings and public/private venues such as restaurants, bars, stadiums etc.

You are right, this is about money, big business holding on to their's at the expense of whomever, however, and wherever. They, like you, have "zero concern for employees".

You said you beleive second hand smoking is harmful. That's good, because it is, unequivically. And hence should be considered as a harmful condition of the workplace by our governments. The workers need to be adequately protected, we are currently failing in that endeavor.

Now, I smoke cigars probably once every month and a half. I smoked cigs for 6 years, but wised up enough to stop. We all have our learning curves, some learn later than others. I enjoy smoking a cigar in a bar or restaurant in the city in which I live and would be dissapointed if I could no longer do so. But I am selfish, I put the individual (me) ahead of the greater good of society and don't always take into account how my actions are injuring others. Most of us are the same way. THATS WHY WE HAVE THE NEED FOR A GOVERNMENT to look out for the society at large while protecting the rights of the individual. A ban like the one being proposed in Cincy does just that.

SunDeck
03-30-2005, 05:05 PM
Um...Cuyahoga County received nearly 300 Million Dollars last year from cigarette taxes. The New York State cigarette tax is $1.55 per pack. IMAGINE how much money that is in NY State coffers.


The CDC estimates that smoking costs the US $157 billion per year.
They estimate that there are 46 million smokers in the US.

If they all smoke a pack a day, that's $9.35 a pack to generate enough revenue to pay for the damage they create.

I doubt that the $276 million dollars that Cuyahoga County gets from the cigarette taxes will go toward smoking cessation, treating heart disease, etc., but the minute someone lights up in my vicinity they ought to start taking responsibility for the threat they are causing me. My right to control my own wellness is being compromised by their actions. What's that worth?

SteelSD
03-31-2005, 03:03 PM
Well, Steel, isn't that what we are talking about? A local or state government having the right to consider second-hand smoke in the workplace harmful? I'm sure you would agree that the role of the government in part is to set workers rights standards. . .or do you feel that the "market" will simply take care of this for us? Do you support minimum wage standards? Overtime rules? Safety regulation? Worker's comp?. . .or do you believe that workers don't need any protection, that the corporate culture will do right by the workers of our great country and not take advantage?

You've entirely missed my point. Every day, people choose to walk through the front door of a hazy bar to hang out and drink for hours. And, every day, employees choose to solicit business in an effort to acquire employment knowing that those businesses allow smoking.

All I want is less hypocrisy. I want governments to stop grabbing tobacco tax dollars and I want people to take personal responsibility for their own actions.

Instead, it appears that we want the government to step in because we consider people to be too dumb to stay away from potentially harmful situations.


History shows and current worker and wage conditions in many of our sectors further illustrates the need for government regulation, particularly when the decisions that our representatives make are all to often influenced by lobbying groups that pay for their votes. Lobbying groups that are made up of the very corporations that the worker needs protection against.

But until a ban is in place, each person has a personal responsibility to make choices that keep them out of harms way.


The tobacco industry has one of the largest lobbying regimes in the USA and the last thing on their minds is protecting the worker in a restaurant or bar from second hand smoke. If not for these lobbyist and their "pro-business" (i.e. anti-workers rights) partners many more states would already have passed anti smoking legislation in public buildings and public/private venues such as restaurants, bars, stadiums etc.

Ok. Conceding that point (which was well stated), we still have people who voluntarily work in those conditions. You might consider that a stupid thing to do.

But it's more convenient to blame the employer and the tobacco lobbyists.


You are right, this is about money, big business holding on to their's at the expense of whomever, however, and wherever. They, like you, have "zero concern for employees".

I have zero concern for people who demonstrate that they have no concern for themselves. You seem to think that I need to watch out for you. Uh-uh. You need to watch out for yourself.

No one's "hiding" the fact that a worker could be exposed to 2nd hand smoke.


You said you beleive second hand smoking is harmful. That's good, because it is, unequivically. And hence should be considered as a harmful condition of the workplace by our governments. The workers need to be adequately protected, we are currently failing in that endeavor.

The workers need to take responsibility for choosing to work there knowing the risks. It's not as if they accepted employment without knowing that smoking was allowed. There's no "invisible" risk there. No asbestos in the ceiling. No tasteless/odorless toxic fumes seeping from cracks in the foundation. No new "risk" was suddenly introduced to their work environment that they weren't well aware of when they accepted the position.

I agree that a government needs to protect it's citizens against unknown/unseen workplace hazards. But I have little sympathy for someone who knows very well what they're getting into and then blames their employer for getting them into it.

All I want is someone who can give me a consistent position that doesn't involve thinking that workers are without choice. That's all. Yet to see it.

SteelSD
03-31-2005, 03:20 PM
The CDC estimates that smoking costs the US $157 billion per year.
They estimate that there are 46 million smokers in the US.

If they all smoke a pack a day, that's $9.35 a pack to generate enough revenue to pay for the damage they create.

Unfortunately, you're working under the assumption that if smoking ceased, all smokers would immediately drop dead and no longer "burden" the healthcare system. There's an associated cost with living longer.


I doubt that the $276 million dollars that Cuyahoga County gets from the cigarette taxes will go toward smoking cessation, treating heart disease, etc., but the minute someone lights up in my vicinity they ought to start taking responsibility for the threat they are causing me. My right to control my own wellness is being compromised by their actions. What's that worth?

Did someone tie you to a lamp post and blow smoke in your face? Or are you capable of moving away from what you consider to be a threat?

Your right to control your wellness remains with you at all times, regardless of whether or not it's inconvenient for you to exercise that right.

DoogMinAmo
03-31-2005, 03:50 PM
Steel,

It seems you are taking a white collare attitude to a blue collar position.

No one is denying that to a certain extent everyone has a choice as to whether or not they accept a job anywhere they work. However, in a capitalistic society, money talks, and in order to live, you need said money.

Many employees work in establishments where they are being paid 6 bucks an hour, and are barely surviving on said wage. Do you think they would choose this establishment over another one that paid them more? If they smoked, would they mind working in a non-smoking facility if they made more money? It inconvenienced them, but they don't mind because they make more.

Now on the flip side, do you think an employee in a similar financial situation that is happy to have his 6 buck an hour job would turn down employment, the ability to survive, for the inconvenience of smoking? Of course not. Do you know why? They don't mind shaving their lives off by 20 or so years, because it prolongs their life in the short term.

Is that a choice in your eyes? Yes, they can choose to not work in a smoking facility and not have a job, or they can deal with smoking and see the next year.

It must be nice to have absolutely no concern for employment and the utmost confidence that if you turn down an offer, another and more ideal situation will step in its place, but that is not how the blue collar world operates.

Johnny Footstool
03-31-2005, 04:12 PM
So offer tax breaks and other incentives to individual businesses that wish to ban smoking. Make it an attractive option.

Don't force compliance from all businesses and all patrons who wish to participate in a behavior that, although harmful, is not criminal.

SteelSD
03-31-2005, 04:31 PM
Steel,

It seems you are taking a white collare attitude to a blue collar position.

No one is denying that to a certain extent everyone has a choice as to whether or not they accept a job anywhere they work. However, in a capitalistic society, money talks, and in order to live, you need said money.

Many employees work in establishments where they are being paid 6 bucks an hour, and are barely surviving on said wage. Do you think they would choose this establishment over another one that paid them more? If they smoked, would they mind working in a non-smoking facility if they made more money? It inconvenienced them, but they don't mind because they make more.

Now on the flip side, do you think an employee in a similar financial situation that is happy to have his 6 buck an hour job would turn down employment, the ability to survive, for the inconvenience of smoking? Of course not. Do you know why? They don't mind shaving their lives off by 20 or so years, because it prolongs their life in the short term.

Is that a choice in your eyes? Yes, they can choose to not work in a smoking facility and not have a job, or they can deal with smoking and see the next year.

It must be nice to have absolutely no concern for employment and the utmost confidence that if you turn down an offer, another and more ideal situation will step in its place, but that is not how the blue collar world operates.

And you might have a case should every business in the world allow smoking. But they don't.

If a person is willing to endure hardship to make more money, that's their own personal choice. Period.

An October, 2003 study (http://money.cnn.com/2003/10/13/pf/dangerousjobs/) tells us that the most hazardous professions are logging and Alskan crab fishing. No lie.

Crab fisherman know that they're working in some of the most hazardous conditions on earth but, as the study demonstrates, that risk is a tradeoff for the potential to make "...upwards of $1,000 a day."

Being a pilot was the third most hazardous profession and it's federally regulated to the teeth.

I don't care what profession you're in. If you accept a job knowing the risks then you take full responsibility for the result. That's not a "white collar" view. It's as "blue collar" as it gets.

DoogMinAmo
03-31-2005, 05:21 PM
But Steel, it is an avoidable risk. The hardships of logging and crab fishing, albeit I am speaking from a position of ignorance on these particular professions, seem like they are inherent to the job. One can have a bar or restaurant without smoking. It is done quite often, as you have pointed out yourself.

As far as likening smoking bans, which would be in "public" spaces only, and prohibition, they are two different matters. Prohibition was the outlawing of drinking based on its immoral consequences, and was seen as an opportunity to weaken the German immigrants/ population during the World Wars.

In the case of a "public" spaces ban, there would still be plenty of opportunity for smokers to damage their own health, it would just be in places where they could not ruin others'. It is not as much a question of rights, as it is a question of motives, as far as I am concerned. If it is really the succombing to a habit that many people who smoke claim it is, then why is it so important to do it in public. Why not just smoke privately?

Another side to this matter that I would like to get feedback on just out of curiosity, is what about those who smoke and drive? If I am in my own car behind a smoker, I can very distinctly and disgustingly smell the smoke. It is a private space that I occupy, and I have no choice but to be behind that smoker on the road. Do the same rules apply? Am I required to not have my windows down and my ventilation system off, or should the smoker not be allowed to have their own window open? At what point do you draw the line?

SteelSD
03-31-2005, 06:10 PM
But Steel, it is an avoidable risk. The hardships of logging and crab fishing, albeit I am speaking from a position of ignorance on these particular professions, seem like they are inherent to the job. One can have a bar or restaurant without smoking. It is done quite often, as you have pointed out yourself.

Environment is environment. I'm talking about the simple concept of taking responsibility for entering an environment one feels may be hazardous to them.

You walk into a bar that allows smoking, there's not a single person there who isn't fully aware that smoking is taking place around them.

Just because the government can choose to alter that environment, it doesn't one bit remove responsibility from those who choose to place themselves in that environment currently.

You're right- not inhaling second hand smoke in an establishment that allows smoking IS avoidable. Don't be there. Seems simple enough to me.


As far as likening smoking bans, which would be in "public" spaces only, and prohibition, they are two different matters. Prohibition was the outlawing of drinking based on its immoral consequences, and was seen as an opportunity to weaken the German immigrants/ population during the World Wars.

In the case of a "public" spaces ban, there would still be plenty of opportunity for smokers to damage their own health, it would just be in places where they could not ruin others'. It is not as much a question of rights, as it is a question of motives, as far as I am concerned. If it is really the succombing to a habit that many people who smoke claim it is, then why is it so important to do it in public. Why not just smoke privately?

In any case, we know how Prohibition turned out. There was open defiance of the alcohol ban and we've seen examples in this very thread of establishments doing the same thing in cities that have done what you propose.


Another side to this matter that I would like to get feedback on just out of curiosity, is what about those who smoke and drive? If I am in my own car behind a smoker, I can very distinctly and disgustingly smell the smoke. It is a private space that I occupy, and I have no choice but to be behind that smoker on the road. Do the same rules apply? Am I required to not have my windows down and my ventilation system off, or should the smoker not be allowed to have their own window open? At what point do you draw the line?

I think we should draw the line at forcing everyone to exist in soundproof, room-temperature, insulated, .0000000000000000001 micron hepa-filtered plastic bubbles.

But even then, someone is still going to be "bothering" someone else.

Blimpie
04-01-2005, 12:33 PM
You must have not paid attention in history class.

As far as I know, blacks used to be slaves, BEATEN slaves. until Lincoln ended it. then for a while after, racism ran rampant. But our culture has shifted to accept african americans as equals, even though unfotunatley, racism still exists in some forms and probably always will in our lifetime.

People used to not get arrested for beating their wives and children either.Wow, you must be right. Well, either that--or the history classes that I took focused on other matters...or, quite possibly, I was just absent the days that the teacher talked about how it was "OK" to beat your wife (and kids) and it was "OK" to hate black people. :help: