Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Outdoor Smoking Ban? Your Thoughts?


      We all know the facts and the arguments for both those in favor of and opposing cigarette smoking. This has been a heated topic for the entirety of our entire lives. In addition, we have noticed the recent legislation has banned smoking inside, and within 15 feet of doors by restaurants and the like. However, there is a strong push in places from Lakewood, Colorado to New York City and Whales to extend the outdoor ban in numerous and powerful ways. The following are the proposed measures for Lakewood:
  • No smoking on restaurant patios
  • 25 feet of smoke-free clearance at doorways instead of 15 feet
  • No smoking protections in the “gathering places” of parks
  • Ban on new hooka bars, must be 18 to go in existing ones
        In that same article, they cite another city, Greeley, that had enacted previous similar measures. What were the results? Their statistics show that heart attacks dropped 27 percent. Now as a CJS major, we all know we need to examine the study on that, to which i did not do for purposes of space in this article. Regardless of the percent and time, it did drop at some level, which is a good sign.
        In the article mentioned above, New York City and the UK/Wales were examined. They cite that over 9500 children are admitted yearly due to second hand smoke in the UK, and that cigarette buds take roughly 12 years to biodegrade. In addition that same article, they estimate 4.5 trillion cigarettes are littered each year. And just from what I've seen, I don't believe that number is far off.  And in New York, as of 2010, mayor Bloomberg helped push through legislation to eliminate smoking areas in large public places such as Central Park.
        So, what's the conclusion? It may seem like such a biased blog so far, so let me at least mention some viewpoints  from the smoker's  perspective before i give my 2 cents, (if my thoughts are worth even that much =]). I talk to habitual smokers, as i work with and am friends with numerous of them at my job. Anyways, the "benefits" or "reasons" are some of the following. Now this list is not exhaustive i'm sure, just as the list of negatives wasn't either, but here they are:
  • It helps de-stress, or "wind down"
  • It gives me a break from ....... 
  • I don't want to live long anyways
   Taking all that into consideration, what do I think? If you couldn't tell I am against smoking and for the extended ban. I do not look down at or judge those that do at all, but rather I just really wish that everybody could kick the bad habit that is destroying their health. I don't want anyone to get cancer or other sicknesses like emphysema, and I definitely do not want anyone to die young. I also do not feel that outdoor bans like these would be that difficult, because it is not eliminating it entirely, just extending the space away from people. Please share your thoughts on the blog here, and if you want you could even share your opinion on the poll from the source I have been referencing, which is here: 


  1. The reason, "I don't want to live long anyways" is an interesting reason but is also respectable due to the current economic crisis. Who wants to live in this economy? Anyway. I totally agree with your stand point on the smoking bans. I have really bad asthma, and even if I smell smoke, I have to walk away so I don't breathe it in. In my opinion, someone else's habit is potentially hurting my heath and I just cannot appreciate that. I do think that they need to have laws to help prevent others from becoming sick. This is a really touchy topic, but a valid point.

  2. I think that this is a good idea because when people smoke it creates an unpleasant environment for everyone. I could be wrong, but I don't think too many people like the smell of smoke. Keeping smokers from smoking on property I think will help sales in certain places. I have seen colleges with small campuses ban tabacco products as well as some medical facilities which is helpful to those environments and those in those environments.

  3. I think putting bans on smoking is a great idea. People don't seem to realize that when they smoke in public, they are not only damaging themselves but the people around them. While I may have an extreme viewpoint, I think smoking should be banned altogether. Smoking does so much damage to people's bodies and it has caused so many deaths, I see very few reasons for it being around. My thought is maybe if smoking was banned in majority of places, people would see it as a huge inconvenience to smoke and they would quit.

  4. I don't smoke but it seems like the laws we have in place already are good enough. I'm old enough to remember when people could smoke in a lot more places than you can today. I had a job where the break room literally had a fog of smoke in it during lunch. I seem to remember people could smoke in the movie theater lobby. So from that perspective its nice to know you can go out to a public place & not come home reeking of smoke. As long as smokers don't crowd the entrance to buildings their habit doesn't really bother me anymore.

    My last job banned smoking on all of their campuses. This is a huge international company so that move was a pretty big deal. Smokers couldn't even go sit in their cars & smoke! I think the new rules went over better in the office buildings but in the factory that I worked in & a couple of the other factory buildings that friends of mine worked in all hell broke loose. The local management had to unofficially look the other way & not enforce the rule as long as the smokers stuck to a designated area and kept the area clean. It became a safety issue because employees were crossing the highway on foot so that they could smoke freely off of company property.

    So although I wouldn't care if smoking was 100% banned I don't think we have the right to tell people what to do with their bodies.

  5. I believe that the current laws regarding smoking are fine the way that they are. I understand that there are many people that are against smoking and also that smoking is very dangerous to ones health but there is a point where people have to respect another's choice to smoke. If legislation makes it illegal to smoke outdoors then people that choose to smoke will be very limited in where they can do so. I completely agree that smoking should be banned indoors because of the obvious determental health effects. However, I feel that smoking outdoors is still dangerous to others but only at a fraction compared to inside. In addition, I think that in most cases it is really easy for a person to walk away from somebody that is smoking when they are outdoors.

  6. I can see both sides to the argument. I understand that people want smoking banned because it is a discomfort for others. People want it banned because it is harmful to themselves. I personally agree with the smoking indoors. I think everyone should have the right to enjoy a smoke free environment, and I use to hate going home after a night of bowling, reeking like an ash tray. As far as a smoking ban outdoors, that is a whole different story. This is a free country and we the people have rights. Lets just say we banned smoking altogether, what would this solve? The answer is nothing. That just shows that the government runs the people and that what happens in socialist countries, but not a democracy. Where would the tyranny stop? Obesity also causes all sorts of diseases, what are we going to do next, put a limit on how much your allowed to purchase at the grocery store, in order to minimize obesity? Again we progressed to clean air in public buildings, but if someone wants to have a smoke in their home, or outdoors that's their business and they should be able to do it without worrying about breaking some ban.

  7. I'm content with the laws that are in place today. If people want to smoke cigarettes, then they should be entitled to. If they "don't want to live that long" then that's up to them. The life we're given is a miracle and a gift and if they're cool with wasting it . . then right on. If they want to take the risks of numerous cancers then that is their choice. We just passed a population of 7 billion people in this world so we could use all the self-destructive people we can get (my cynical opinion). 15 feet away from entrances is cool with me, too. What's an extra 10 feet going to do, really?

  8. This debate is becoming more and more popular in seeing the effects on second hand smoke. I am not around that many smokers and if I am they go outside. I am personally happy that smoking is banned in the bars in Illinois because I went to a bar in Indiana and I couldn’t handle it. But the talk is to increase the ban to more areas, which isn’t a bad idea. Maybe it’s because I am not a smoker but I don’t like the idea of smoking at a park due to all the kids around and I feel it is inconsiderate. I think it would be hard to draw the line on where it is okay to smoke and where it is not. But I really like the idea of banning it at Central Park because people who do not smoke shouldn’t suffer the consequences or the risks that the smokers are taking.

  9. I personally am a smoker and disagree with these bans. In all honesty i wish i wasn't but you have to respect a persons right to smoke. We dont smoke in restaraunts and bars or any other indoor facilities. We stand away from non smokers and stand away from doors. I feel that people need to be content with the laws that because outside is for everyone to enjoy as they please. If someone is smoking near you go somehwere else. Look how huge central park is, a few smokers here and there isnt going to kill anyone... except maybe the smokers

  10. The biggest thing that gets to me regarding the smoking laws is the fact that second hand smoke very dangerous, let alone actually smoking a cigarette. It is a given that you have the right to smoke, however dangering other people with second hand smoke should not be tolerable. The fact that the smoke that is exhaled can be very costly and possibly cause lung cancer to a passerby is absurd. I totally agree with stronger stipulations on cigarette smoke.