Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Smoking ban

I don't smoke. I've never even had a lit cigarette in my mouth. I hate people smoking near me. I have asthma. Yet, I'm opposed to this ban on smoking in pubs. I don't think it matters whether employment will go up or down with this ban. It's just wrong.

Yesterday's Irish Independent had an article that indicated that employment in NYC's bars & restaurants was up on last year despite the ban on smoking. Yes, employment in bars and restaurants is up on the spring of 2002, but an increase could probably have been anticipated anyway. Last spring, NY was still picking up the pieces from September 11. Employment in these industries is still not what it was in 2001.

As a customer, I don't want to eat near people who smoke. I don't think the government needs to ban smoking for me to enjoy my meal smoke free. If a restaurant wants my business then they'd better have a smoke free area and a good ventilation system.

And, like a lot of people who favor the ban on smoking in pubs - I rarely go into them. I have been in a pub 3 or 4 times in 2003. But, from my own observation, those people who are the pubs' best customers are also predominantly smokers. Will these people drink without smoking? Or will they smoke and drink alone at home, and thus, transfer their smoke (and possibly drink) problems from pub to home where other non-smokers will suffer? I suspect the latter.