Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Smoke Smoke Smoke That Cigarette

City of Loma Linda bans smoking in most public places

LOMA LINDA, Calif. (AP) -- Smokers soon will have far fewer places where they can light up in Loma Linda. Council members on Tuesday passed an anti-smoking law that prohibits tobacco use in most of the city's public places.

The ordinance bans smoking on Loma Linda's public streets and sidewalks, in parks, restaurants, theaters and hospitals, as well as most of the city's motel and apartment units. The fine for a first offense will be $100 or less. The city of nearly 21,000 residents in San Bernardino County was founded in 1905 by Seventh-day Adventists. They typically abstain from alcohol, caffeine and meat.


When cigarettes are outlawed, only outlaws will have cigarettes.

Last October a new rule went into effect in Nashville and now most of the honky tonks of Nashville are smoke-free. I smoke a pipe so I don't have a craving to smoke the same way a cigarette smoker does, but sitting in a bar, listening to live county music and drinking a beer is when I most want to light up. Since the ban went into effect I find I have a whole lot less desire to go out. Dim lights, thick smoke and loud, loud music just seem to go together.

If I would have still been in the Metro Council, I would not have supported the ban on smoking in bars. I think it should be left up to the individual bar owner to set his own rules about smoking and the the customer can decide if he wants to visit that establishment or not. Nevertheless, while I don't like it and wouldn't have voted for it, I can understand the second hand smoke argument for banning smoking in enclosed places. Prohibiting smoking outdoors, however, is punitive and discriminatory and I do not see the logic used to ban it, other than people just find it offensive. I don't think we should have the right not to be offended.

Some people just can't stand it if other people are having fun. People like banning activity of which they disapprove. Strip clubs are often banned under the guise of health and safety regulations. Zoning and permitting are often used to prohibit activity that is otherwise legal. Regulations supported by the Baptist and the liquor industry keep wine out of Tennessee grocery stores.

Where are the lobbyist for the merchants of death when you need them. If this ban can stand, then the good citizens of Loma Linda may next ban coffee drinking in public. If the tobacco industry will establish a non-profit entity to legally challenge irrational smoking bans like this, I will donate ten dollars. Maybe smokers ought to converge on Loma Linda and have a massive smoke-in.

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  1. I agree with you 100% on this, Rod. I live in California and when the local government in my city decided to ban smoking in bars and I argued against it, I got so much flak you wouldn't believe it. People around here want human rights for dogs but not for smokers. Nuts.

  2. who gives a crap?
    If those assholes want to kill themselves by smokin, let em