Films that glamorize excessive smoking will now be rated R. Recently a county here passed a law banning smoking in all public places including bars. Smokes have been forced outside of their places of work. It is one thing to expect a certain amount of courtesy to non-smokers, but quite another to try to ban smoking entirely.
Smokers are increasingly treated as if they had contracted leprosy. Governments have done more and more to discourage tobacco use including excessive taxes. It may be a good thing and enough to discourage it if it becomes socially unacceptable, but why do we need government interference? Nor am I sure what kind of sense it makes to ban smoking in someplace like a bar. No one going into a place that exists solely to serve alcohol is primarily concerned about inhaling toxic substances.
I fully sympathize with those who lost a relative to lung cancer especially because the relative smoked for years. However, the cost of freedom includes the freedom to suffer the consequences. No one forced anyone to smoke a cigarette or caused a smoker to continue after they knew the dangers. How much is the federal government spending already on education to inform people of the dangers of tobacco?
Taxes on cigarettes have been popular and highly contested to pay for social programs, but they have reached a point where people are starting to circumvent them and buy their nicotine from places like Indian Reservations. If it becomes more restrictive who knows what other ways to get around paying the tax will arise? The politicians responsible lack a basic understanding of human nature when it comes to addictions.
I am not a smoker but I think common sense should to be applied to this issue. People can make the choice to choose to smoke or not. The information about the dangers is readily available products and organizations serve those who wish to quit. Chances are if I go into a place that serves liquor I’m accepting all of the potential health risks, and if I choose to drive legal consequences also. Why do I need the government restricting other people’s freedoms?
This trend should disturb everyone. It’s not that smoking is a good thing, but restricting people’s freedoms in the name of society’s good is a slippery slope that should have not been traveled. What people need to do is strike a blow for common sense and demand the repeal of the anti-smoking laws. They may be going after unpopular habits now but how long until they get to something like eating at McDonald’s? Some localities have already trying to enact laws restricting the usage of SUVs.