Smoking has become a very controversial topic. Many people think there is nothing wrong with it and they say they know the health risks. Some people believe that everyplace they go should have a smoking section. Some people believe that no places should have a smoking section because the smoke interferes with their health and their time out.
So, a smoking ban was proposed and the D.C. Council gave a final approval on January 4, 2006 to a ban on smoking in bars, restaurants, and other public places with an 11 to 1 vote. There has been a lot of controversy over this stating that this ban goes against our right of freedom, however, we don’t have a right to subject others with hazardous and deathly fumes that can cause major health issues by second-hand smoke.
Second hand smoke is an allergen; those who have allergies can suffer from stuffy, runny noses, watery eyes, sneezing, coughing, wheezing, and all the other typical allergy symptoms within minutes of exposure. Being around second hand smoke for long periods of time can increase the risk for lung cancer, heart disease, asthma, learning difficulties in children as well as anxiety and depression, lung infections and ear infections are possible. Second hand smoke is proven to kill 53,000 nonsmokers per year.
If you and your children go into a restaurant that prevents smoking, remember the reason why you are where you are. You could be at the restaurant because your treating your kids to something, you don’t feel like being at home to cook a meal because it’s been a long day, or just don’t want to be at home. You didn’t go out because you wanted to light up a cigarette and have your children inhale the smoke, you went out to eat to eat!
Food is supposed to be appetizing, but not when the guy beside you is puffing on a cigarette and the smoke is setting all over your juicy T-bone steak. Smoking sections in places really don’t make any sense because most of the time it’s separated by a different room or there is just a piece of glass that separates the smoker from the non smoking booth or table. Smoke rises and you’re not entirely enclosed. The smoke can still escape and travel through the air and setting on the food that the waitress is carrying when she walks by to serve another table. How about bars and clubs, these places are meant for social interactions and to have a good time. I don’t think walking into a smoke filled bar is a good time.
Because of this ban, some communities state that heart attack rates have dropped nearly 60%. Having smoke free environments encourage smokers to stop or reduce smoking.
Dozens of places have said that the new smoking ban has taken a toll on their business. Casino Windsor in Michigan is stating to lay off almost 300 employees. Some bars state that their food sales have increased but their bar sales have decreased. Some clubs have reported a $150,000 loss because of the ban.
What about this new ordinance that gives exemptions to the smoking ban law? Why should there be an exemption, why should casinos and some bars and businesses be so special that they get to have people smoke in their facilities. My opinion is this is wrong. It’s just like when we were in first grade and someone had a piece of candy, the teacher always said, “If you don’t have enough for everybody in the class then don’t eat in class.” Exemptions are going to cause rivalries in local areas and pointing fingers at each other. No place should have a special reason to smoke. These places with or just seeking special exemptions are doing this because they don’t want to loose their precious money and don’t care about why the bans were put into order. The order states that to qualify the business must use an air ventilation system, but the air ventilation system doesn’t catch all of the harmful smoke, let alone help a smoker improve their health as they are inhaling tar and carbon monoxide.
I believe in the United States and their pursuit of freedom. But if you really think about it, our freedom comes with rules and regulations and tracking systems and limitations. Yes I know that we don’t have tanks rolling up and down our streets telling us when to turn out our lights, and I am thankful for that and support those in the armed forces that are keeping us free and safe. But the government has found other ways to control us, and banning smoking in businesses is not one of them. This is being done to create a healthier environment for you, your family, and those strangers around you. Not to mention to the environment. So, those of you who are smokers and put your foots down to walking into a smoke free restaurant or bar, think twice to why you are going into that restaurant or bar. Obviously because you smoke you are not taking into consideration your own health, but please be respectful and take into consideration your children and the people around you’s health.
You may think that is harsh to say, and yes I have many friends that smoke, but in speaking to them, they realize that it is harmful to them and may kill them someday, but they aren’t doing anything about it to stop. And that goes for the other people that smoke as well.
In conclusion, respect others with their opinions and wishes, don’t stop having a good time just because you can’t inhale tar into your body, and for the love of God, if you don’t care about stopping smoking or what smoking is doing to your body at least consider what it may or could be doing to your children and their bodies. And if something happens to you because of your constant intake of suicide, think of how your family would feel to loose you because of something that you could have stopped, but chose not to.