Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Smoking mad

I no longer smoke, but these smoking bans always get me riled up.

NJ is jumping on the feel-good bandwagon and banning smoking in bars and restaurants (casinos excluded because it's bad for business). There is no law against making a private establishment smoke free. Those who don't like smoke (such as myself) can feel free to go to the non-smoking bars. It's still legal to smoke. The owner of an establishment should have the right to decide whether or not to allow a legal substance into his place.

Some may argue that the law isn't being made to protect the patrons, but the employees. Since smoke is not a danger inherent in pouring drinks, the employees are in danger. That's flawed logic in my opinion. Window washing can be a dangerous job. Should there be a law forcing window washing companies to only be allowed to wash ground-level windows? No, if you feel it's too dangerous for you, don't take the job. Electricians handle live wires every day, which can be dangerous, but since they knew that going in, it's not a problem. I would have no problem with a law requiring establishments to announce if they are smoking or non-smoking.

Denying use of a legal substance because it annoys people and might be dangerous is a slippery slope. I won't be suprised to see prohibition come back.

Feel free to ignore this post if it makes you angry. Anger can be dangerous.

Good day, comrade citizens.