The Smoking Ban

The Smoking Ban

 

Not Smoking in Public Places: The Simple Choice

            Have you ever been in a restaurant eating a delicious meal and suddenly get choked up by cigarette smoke?  If you are like me the answer is yes.  I personally despise that experience.  Even though I smoke cigarettes I still despise being choked up by cigarette smoke while eating.  You may wonder why a smoker would be bothered by cigarette smoke.  The answer is simple; second hand smoke is far worse than regular cigarette smoke.  When asked if I am for or against public smoking bans, I say that I am for it.  Smoking in public places should be banned because second-hand smoke is a health risk to innocent people, is an irritation to smokers and non-smokers alike, and causes family stress.

No Smoking

ban smoking in public places
ban smoking in public places

What Are The Risks

First of all I would like to take this opportunity to explain how smoking in public places causes second-hand smoke. According to the executive summary of “Environmental Tobacco Smoke: Health Risk or Health Hype?” Author Unknown, second-hand smoke may also be a threat to health. The executive summary of “Environmental Tobacco Smoke: Health Risk or Health Hype?” can be found at http://www.acsh.org/publications/pubID.346/pub_detail.asp. After review of the information found within the executive summary I learned that second-hand smoke could aggravate asthma. My wife of eight years has asthma. The asthma she has was caused in my opinion by her parent’s second-hand smoke. Her parents would smoke cigarettes in their vehicle, with them in it, with the windows rolled up. They were made to breathe in the polluted air. As a result my wife and her two sisters have lost the use of 20% of their lungs. It is proven that second-hand smoke does deteriorate lung capacity.

The EPA has reported on http://www.epa.gov, “Secondhand smoke can trigger asthma episodes and increase the severity of attacks.” The best course of action to prevent asthma problems in non-smokers is, avoid smoking in your home and car as stated by the EPA. My wife, as I mentioned earlier, has slight asthma. She does not allow me to smoke in the house. When you are a smoker all you have to do is ask yourself if it is such a big deal to smoke outside. It really is not a big deal. I smoke outside and I enjoy it because I get an opportunity to unwind from my hectic day. The benefits to not smoking around non-smokers are greater than you may imagine.

Next, secondhand smoke is an irritant to smokers and non-smokers alike. Have you ever stayed at a relative’s house where they smoke? Have you ever noticed how your clothes smell when you get back to your home? That is because the cigarette smoke adheres to the cloths in your clothes. Move a painting in a smoker’s house to see that the white wall is really yellow. Now imagine that your lungs are the white walls and then you inhale secondhand smoke. Your lungs are now as polluted as the “yellow” walls. If I were a non-smoker I sure wouldn’t want to have my health ruined because people can smoke in a restaurant. Even as a smoker I don’t want that. Tell me the justice in that. You choose not to smoke but I do, because I can smoke where you are you suffer the same if not worse health problems.

Hubchallenge

Hubchallenge number 10
Hubchallenge number 10

What Should We Do

 

When I go to a restaurant that doesn’t allow smoking I don’t go to a different business.  Some businesses claim that smoking bans have been the cause of their business shutting down.  I disagree totally.  The fact is, if your business is good it doesn’t matter whether people can smoke or not.  Generally speaking people don’t go to businesses to smoke, they go to enjoy the attributes of that place.  Most places that end up closing because of the bans are usually bars.  I can understand that, if only slightly.  When people go out to a bar they go to enjoy time spent with other people.  A lot of people smoke during this time, perhaps due to alcohol induced intoxication.  A public smoking ban should be placed on all establishments other than bars.

            How could smoking in public places put undo stress on family?  The answer is simple in a complex way.  Lets use a scenario.  You go to a restaurant and sit down near the smoking section.  While you and your family are eating, all you notice is the haze in the air and the thickness of the air.  All throughout your meal you and your family is coughing, your eyes are burning and the food taste bad.  Cigarette smokers and their disgusting habit ruin your nice family outing.  You and your spouse are irritated and start to fight about little unimportant things.  Although this is a scenario it really happened to me.  The same course of events happened to me three months previously.  I did not realize at the time but the cause of the fighting was the cigarette smokers. 

            Couples may also disagree and argue about car and in home smoking.  I smoke in my car but my wife doesn’t smoke in hers because she is not a smoker.  However, I have agreed not to smoke in the house for her sake and the children’s sake. 

            In closing, you must understand the importance of not smoking around non-smokers.  It all breaks down to a simple choice.  Smokers choose to smoke and non-smokers choose not to.  As human beings we must respect the decision other people make.  I have been to many places where I could not smoke.  Was it a big deal to me?  No, it wasn’t.  I respected the rules of the establishment and the people in the establishment.  Do you go to church and smoke?  What about libraries, do you smoke there?  Do you smoke in movie theatres or grocery stores?  The answer is NO.  You don’t because smoking has been banned in those places for many years.  You can survive not smoking in those establishments so why not in restaurants.  Really the only place you can still smoke in is restaurants and bars.  Let’s do the respectable thing and not smoke in restaurants.

Authors Note:

 I wrote this about three years ago when I still smoked.  I have since quit smoking and I am glad that I did.  Having been a smoker I understand the need for a cigarette, and being a non-smoker now I understand the need to not have second-hand smoke.  

 

Copyright 2009 by Wesley Cox

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Comments 12 comments

Hmrjmr1 profile image

Hmrjmr1 7 years ago from Georgia, USA

Concur for the most part my friend but do wish more restaurants / cafe's had a designated outdoor place for a smoke and a coffee etc.. Great Hub


wesleycox profile image

wesleycox 7 years ago from Back in Texas, at least until August 2012 Author

Thanks for visiting Hmrjmr, I am glad that you agree with me.


shamelabboush profile image

shamelabboush 7 years ago

This is an excellent and highly educative hub! I recall here Japan's experience in this regard when they banned smoking even from public places except some remote designated place that you have to trace out in a map... This should be the case everywhere.


wesleycox profile image

wesleycox 7 years ago from Back in Texas, at least until August 2012 Author

Thank you shamelabboush, I appreciate your kind comment. Thank you for visiting.


advisor4qb profile image

advisor4qb 7 years ago from On New Footing

I haven't had a cigarette in almost three years. Sometimes people smoke around me, and it doesn't really bother me. In fact, sometimes it smells pretty good. However, I do know that secondhand smoke is bad for me, and I guess the whole reason I quit was so that I could live to see my grandchildren (I'll probably get hit by a bus instead of dying from cigarettes...when it's time, it's just time!)....my grandfather smoked for more than seventy years. He died at 92, and he was still sharp as a tack!

It is simply a matter of courtesy, though. Before I quit, I was always considerate of other people and asked them if they minded that I smoked. I rarely smoked indoors, and I was relieved when they did away with smoking restaurants and other places like that. It would be nice if nobody smoked anymore, really. THAT should be the illegal substance (NOT that I do anything else...I am not a druggie, but tobacco is SOOO bad for you)!


wesleycox profile image

wesleycox 7 years ago from Back in Texas, at least until August 2012 Author

Thanks for commenting advisor, I am glad you quit smoking and I am also glad about the smoking ban.


Helen Cater profile image

Helen Cater 7 years ago from UK

I am a smoker, but have to say having a little enjoyment from the smoking ban. I was having far to much, and this ban has helped me cut down and work towards giving up.


wesleycox profile image

wesleycox 7 years ago from Back in Texas, at least until August 2012 Author

That is good news Helen, I think if it helps you quit smoking altogether it is great. I just personally don't like smelling or breathing second hand smoke. Even when I smoked. I have been smoke free for three years.


wrenfrost56 profile image

wrenfrost56 7 years ago from U.K.

Well done for giving up I have been trying to for years. I compleatly agree with you on this, another great hub wesley.


wesleycox profile image

wesleycox 7 years ago from Back in Texas, at least until August 2012 Author

Thank you wrenfrost, it is important to be ready to give up smoking before you try. Further, try to quit on a Monday, it helps...I don't know how it just does. Thank you for reading and agreeing with me.


freedomlover 7 years ago

You are completely and totally wrong and it sounds to me like you are overexaggerating. First of all I have lived with a family of smokers and I do not believe it is right to smoke it is their individual choice. Freedom is one of the greatest things in this country and that is why it is so great. The government should not be able to legislate peoples actions! This is yet another step in the wrong direction for this country.


wesleycox profile image

wesleycox 7 years ago from Back in Texas, at least until August 2012 Author

Thank you for your input.

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