D.C. Smoking Ban?

The D.C. City Council is holding a debate tonight surrounding a smoking ban for restaurants and bars [see Post, DCist]. It’s easy for me to not take a side at all. I actively avoid going into the District because it drives me crazy, and the people all kinda’ suck to a certain extent. So, I say: Go ahead, ban smoking in D.C.!

Even in an old tobacco state like here in Virginia, there are plenty of places that have a self-imposed ban on smoking. The State Theater in Falls Church and Clarendon Ballroom come to mind immediately. If you want to smoke, guess what? You go outside… either on the roof our out the front doors. You can get back in, I promise.

I’m a smoker, duh. But, if you want badly enough to go see a show or spend time with people at one of these places, you’ll do it anyway… despite their non-smoking policies. So what’s the big fuckin’ deal?

1) I choose to go to the non-smoking place, it’s my choice… versus 2) that freedom of choice is taken away from me, and I am forced to comply with a decision that someone else made. Boo-fucking-hoo, you do that every day anyway. Smokers can be such whiny little babies sometimes… and inconsiderate, too.

In my opinion, it’s the bar and restaurant owners in the District who should be pissed off about the possible ban (provided they’d want to keep smoking legal in their own building)… not the crybabies.


3 thoughts on “D.C. Smoking Ban?

  1. I’ll tell you what the big deal is. First, the EPA second hand smoke study is bad science. Even if it’s proven conclusively that secondhand smoke is bad – and I believe it will be – you can’t do a good thing based on bad information. Slippery slope, that is. I don’t feel wrong in saying, the next logical leap is to believe in preserving a “culture of life” for someone whose brain is missing more than half its mass. Right? Keeping people alive is the right thing… except when it’s not. You have to base scientific decisions on the best possible science. If this is a health/medical decision – a science field – we can’t base our decision on a study that’s easily debunked.

    Second, it’s the legislation of behavior. It’s OK to go to a bar and drink (alcohol is in essence a poison, and its overuse can lead to death, and the deaths of others.. just like cigarettes!), and have sex with people (which can lead to death, or the deaths of others, or inconvenience at the very least.. bitch never did give me my T-shirt back) but SMOKING? OMFG STOP NOW!

    Legislation of morality that doesn’t contribute to social order (eg murder, theft, arson, etc) is pointless, wasteful, and stupid. History has shown, it never works.

    And besides, shouldn’t market capitalism win? Shouldn’t the markets decide who has the better bar? If I open a bar and it’s no smoking, not even outside, no reentry, and you open one that’s “Gary’s Nictotine Palace”, we’ll see who prospers and who fails. So far in places like NYC, you’d be slammed and I’d be filing for bankruptcy.

    I agree that smokers should just STFU, and lose the whole “smoker’s rights” bullshit. That doesn’t change the fact that these bans are stupid. It’s yuppie wanna-live-forever-ism.

  2. I can’t comment on what science was used down there (or up here for that matter) or its validity. I don’t know from science like you most definitely do.

    If the smoke could be contained within the body of the smoker, like alcohol is, I’d be fine with letting people smoke anywhere alcohol is consumed (i.e. those cigarette style nicotine inhalers). The problem is that it isn’t self-contained and there isn’t an effective way to protect waitstaff (for example) from inhaling the smoke against their will. Has a “safe level of inhaling carcinogens” level been established?

    I’m a capitalist at heart, but I’m not a free-for-all capitalist. Restaurants are regulated for the food preparation and cleanliness of their establishments. I don’t see a smoking ban being that far removed. It could be my egalitarian Canadian side coming through. :-)

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