Thank You For Smoking

I'm not a smoker...never have been (OK, unless you count an annual cigar).

So, understand that my topic here doesn't really support smoking so much as our ever-eroding liberties. Some of these, as you will read, are being removed at the simplest stroke of a pen with "feel good" tactics.

Recently, a local radio station (93.3 The Planet) played a commercial announcing a terrific new product available at all North Carolina (we're close to the border) restaurants & businesses: fresh air. This was accomplished by prohibiting smoking at all businesses, public & private.

I don't care so much on the public - if the state determines that will be the policy, the infringement on my rights, while it does exist, is sensible and minimal. This is a reasonable policy as few restaurants are publicly-owned & most public businesses are relevant to essential services (DMV, Registrar, etc.)

However, privately-owned businesses should be allowed to determine if smoking is allowed on their respective properties. If I'm the proprietor of Al Gore's House of Hummus and Holistic Medicine & want it to look/smell like a crowded pool hall on Saturday night, that's my right, not some elected clown riding a desk. If my revenue suffers because my target demographic - non-bathing, organic-loving, damn dirty hippies - wants to stay away from the bikers and union guys who frequent my place because it's OK to smoke, that's the risk I take as the owner.

The simple fact is it's my call as the proprietor of the business. While the state may claim to have an interest in prohibiting smoking to help the innocent non-smoker, the fact is the non-smoker may choose what places to frequent & avoid.

The military protects us. Bureaucrats? Not so much.


patti said...

Yeah, I'm not a smoker eitehr - never even tried one cig, seriously, I'm not lying. But - all this no smoking here there or anywhere does irritate me for the same reason. I don't like being around smoking so if someone is, I move. My prerogative to move. And yeah, the government of NC gets more corrupt and more nazi and more nanny state ever year.

Mrs. Who said...

Another non-smoker here (although I did in my bar-hopping days in college). And I don't care if a business owner allows smoking. If I don't like it, I just won't go there. Now, at a restaurant, if they can adequately divide non-smoking from smoking, again, I don't care.

These kinds of laws are only 'protecting' us from having and enjoying our freedoms.

Hapkido said...

Patti: I've never lit up a cig, either. Just a few cigars.

NC is a beautiful place, which maybe is why these elected clowns pass such crazy policies: because they can. If IA tried that crap, people would move out more than they do now...

Mrs. Who: Agreed on the smoking/non-smoking areas. If customers don't like it, they may choose to go elsewhere.

Many people tell me that businesses "would [ban smoking] anyway". I tell them that's entirely different in principle. There's a ton of liberty in a business being allowed to determine it's own fate versus a government entity forcing it's hand...

My other part to the argument is that, if the concern were really to keep people safe from the apparent dangers of tobacco, the government, in it's infinite, controlling "wisdom" would outlaw them.

pamibe said...

Another non-smoker who would rather the Nanny government kept their hands out of private business. My mother and father did things 'for my own good' but Uncle Sam needs to take several steps back, sit the heck down and shut the f up.

Harvey said...

Ah, but it's not about the patrons. You see, this is about workplace safety. These poor waitresses who only make 2 bucks an hour, and they're getting emphysema because they have to work in this horrible environment. Why should someone die for a paycheck?

At least, that's what I heard in a PSA pushing for bar & restaurant smoking bans in Wisconsin.

Because waitstaff jobs are so hard to come by.

Hapkido said...

Patti: It's frustrating that people allow their rights to be auctioned off by politicians & actually applaud their efforts to keep them "safe".

You can either be completely free or completely safe...why don't we try leaning towards the former for once?

Hapkido said...

Mrs. Who:
Dang it! This is my blog & I'm supposed to be the eloquent one! ;-)

Well said!

Hapkido said...

Yeah, if only they'd do that...

Hapkido said...

No kidding. I'm pretty sure the "Table-Waiters Association" is not an exclusive club.

Snark of the highest caliber, as always!

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