Within Me Without Me

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

hot debate with the hubby

so here in houston, a proposal is on the ballot for a city-wide smoking ban. in all public areas. no smoking at all.

this apparently has been passed in austin, too.

now, i am not a smoker, but i have been. so i sympathize with a smoker's plight. and while i do not have the desire to be a smoker now, i do feel pretty strongly about this ban, and feel it's unfair and unnecessary. jerry, of course, is all for the ban. he's pretty much the reason i stopped smoking in the first place. he has asthma and allergies, and smoke really bothers him. i got tired of him sneezing all over me whenever we were out drinking, so i quit smoking. oh, and i really started to enjoy going up stairs without sounding like a dying crow, and waking up in the morning without a scratchy, junky throat and lungs.

i just think that a person ought to be able to smoke in an outside, well ventilated area, and if a bar or establishment wants to provide that area for it's smoking patrons, they should have that option. it's good for business. i know when i waited tables, i always wanted the tables in the smoking section, because they almost as a rule spend more, stay longer, drink more, have higher checks, and consequently, tip better. and while smoke in a restaraunt is annoying when you're not a smoker, we all have the choice of which restaurant to go to. we choose the ones that either don't have a smoking section, or have them sufficiently separated so we don't have to deal with the smoke. (incidentally, even when i was a smoker, i didn't like sitting in smoking sections while i was eating. food and smoke don't go well together. booze and smoke do, though.)

i also do not believe that second hand smoke from being in bars and restaurants will give you cancer. growing up in a home with smoking parents, maybe. but if the only time you are subjected to second hand smoke is when you are out in bars, and you spend enough time in the bar to worry about getting cancer, fear not! you are not going to die of cancer, you are going to die of liver disease. and that's your own damn fault.

my suggestion is this. if the government feels obligated to regulate our habits, and provide more clean air for it's taxpayers, they should grant stipends or tax rebates or some other kind of monetary reward for the establishments that do not allow smoking. that way, bar or restaraunt owneres who now say that they are committed to their smoking clientele will have a choice in the matter - they can forgo the rebate and still offer smokers a place to hang out. and all the non smokers can choose to avoid those places, or at least know that there are other places out there who did ban smoking in their bar, who are committed to the non-smoking clientele. every one has a choice, there are costs and benefits to those choices, the government gets to promote healthy living, and everyone wins.

and if i ever get the opportunity to go to a bar again (hubby and i were dreaming about it last night, as the babies were clamoring for our attention) then i can have my nicotine buzz added to my alcohol buzz to make me an even cheaper date.


  • At 3:10 PM, Blogger Kelli in the Mirror said…

    Interesting topic. I agree, I think.

    I also think (as one who doesn't buy cigarettes) that they should put some tax on them that actually goes toward something worthwhile.

    Also, I went to a child care meeting on health the other night. She said that most people think they're doing great if they go outside to smoke so their kids don't breathe it. Really, nicotine is such a sticky substance that it's actually worse for a baby if you go smoke and then hold them and let them rub their face in your clothes. She said if you're going to smoke, you should have some coat or sweater that you wear when you smoke, and then leave it outside, and wash when you come in before you pick up kids. Crazy huh?


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