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Should Smoking Be Banned Indoors And Outdoors?

Updated on October 14, 2013

Personal Example of Deleterious Effects of Indoor Smoke

My revulsion about second hand smoke is visceral and personal. My maternal grandmother and my father were chain smokers and my mother, who never smoked a cigarette in her life, was the first to suffer from the harmful effects of their addiction to smoking. Mom developed severe asthma in her thirties and then emphysema. Still, my father's denial that his smoking had anything to do with Mom's lung problems was so strong that as a young teenager, I remember him intentionally puffing smoke directly into her face after she asked him not to smoke in our small apartment.

"Smoking doesn't cause breathing problems, it's all in your head, Peggy," he said, puffing away even more as Mom started gasping for breath. I tried to intercede and beg him to stop, but his first response was to say, "Stay out of this. She's faking an asthma attack. She'll be okay."

But she wasn't okay, and since our phone had been shut off due to non-payment of the bill, I had no way to call for an ambulance. Fortunately, we lived just a few blocks from the hospital and when Mom's choking and gasping got worse, Dad finally carried her out to the car and drove her to the hospital, while I anxiously stayed home with my younger brother. Mom survived that asthma attack, but endured many other attacks and trips to the emergency room while she was the office manager in a law firm, as clients often puffed away in the waiting room. She eventually had to stop working due to her severe sensitivity to second hand smoke, and the deleterious effect it had on her asthma and emphysema. She went on disability in her early 40's and rarely ventured outside because second hand smoke, especially from cigars, would trigger asthma attacks in restaurants, movies and other public places.

At the age of 40, Dad nearly died from his first heart attack, and it was only then, as his own health issues (partially related to smoking) surfaced, that he stopped smoking and he also apologized to my mother about how his smoking had affected her own health. Dad died from a second heart attack on his 55th birthday, although he never resumed smoking after his first heart attack.

Being in a smoke free environment helped protect Mom from further damage to her lungs and she currently lives in a smoke free, assisted living facility.

Children Thrive On Clean Air
Children Thrive On Clean Air | Source

Delaware Passes The First Clean Air Act In The USA

Flash forward to 2001 when I moved to the state of Delaware. Governor Ruth Ann Minner's administration was trying to pass the Clean Indoor Air Act and in 2002 the act went through making Delaware the first state in the nation to adopt a comprehensive state wide smoking ban.

The current statistics about second hand smoke are staggering. According to the CDC, there are 700 chemicals, including 70 carcinogens in second hand smoke leading to an annual estimated 46,000 deaths from heart disease and an additional 3,400 deaths from lung cancer. Delaware's ground breaking laws have proven that such laws can also be habit breaking. In 2001, before the ban went into effect, 25% of Delaware adults smoked regularly. By 2008, less than 18% routinely smoked, according to statistics gathered by Behavioral Risk Factor Surveys.

Other States Follow Delaware's Lead

Thirty five other states and dozens of cities have enacted laws prohibiting smoking in indoor areas of worksites, restaurants and bars. More recent laws are starting to ban outdoor smoking citing research that second hand smoke does not quickly dissipate outdoors. The new laws ban smoking on beaches, boardwalks and some public parks in Delaware and other states and cities.

Although I am sensitive to the fact that smokers feel their rights are being infringed upon by such laws, I need only think of the dramatic effects that second hand smoke had on my mother's health to know, deep in my heart, that the most important right of all is everyone's right to breathe fresh air.

Breaking News: NYC's New Law

As I write this hub, New York City is starting to implement a new law that went into effect on May 24, 2011. It bans smoking outdoors, at beaches, boardwalks, parks and in pedestrian plazas and shows that such laws are gaining traction in cities across the nation.

Smoking Law Poll

Are you in favor of laws that ban smoking indoors and outdoors?

See results


Submit a Comment

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    5 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Craftytothecore,

    Thanks for sharing your personal experiences with second hand smoke. It is so sad that adults who smoke often have a wall of denial about the serious effects that their own smoking has on children and even other adults.

    I am sorry that your own grandmother treated you so cruelly in regards to your smoke exposure and that you suffer from asthma. There are few things as scary as being unable to breathe.

    When I was growing up it was known that smoking hurt the smoker but few were aware that it had effects on bystanders.

    Now people have the information about all the health issues that second hand smoke can cause, and laws in many places give the nonsmoker rights to clean air, even outside, but despite those laws children are still exposed to smoke in their own homes and in the cars their parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles drive.

    I appreciate your leaving such an insightful comment.

  • CraftytotheCore profile image


    5 years ago

    Despite growing up around smokers, I never smoked a day in my life. My grandmother died from emphysema. I can remember as a child sitting in her cramped kitchen with 7 other adults while they all smoked one right after another. I could barely breathe. One time I mentioned to her that it actually hurt my nose when she smoked. She took a big puff and blew it right in my face as she held me down.

    I don't understand people who smoke in a car with windows rolled up, especially when children are in the car.

    We have signs around here that prohibit smoking in public parks, yet people still do it. They don't seem to realize that just because they are outside, the smoke is still there. It doesn't magically blow away. I find it extremely offensive. I'm very sensitive to smoke and I have asthma.

    I don't know what's so popular about it anyway. Great Hub!

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    6 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Paul Keuhn,

    Thanks for leaving such an insightful and interesting comment and also a personal example of your first encounter with a non-smoking ban at a baseball stadium in Milwaukee.

    Am glad you no longer smoke.

    Thanks for the vote up and share. It's greatly appreciated.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    6 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Deepak Chaturvedi,

    Thanks for taking time to voice your opinion on this important issue.

    I appreciate your thoughtful input.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    6 years ago from South Carolina

    Welcome FreezeFrame,

    Thanks for sharing smoking stories from your own family which, like mine, show the complexities of the effects of second hand smoking.

    As both our family histories show, it is not always the smoker who suffers the worst effects of smoking and some studies have proven that there are actually more harmful toxic pollutants in second hand smoke than what the smoker directly inhales.

    Some states do have laws to protect children from second hand smoke exposure in cars, but of course it's hard to enforce the law. Sometimes the greatest benefits of such laws is increasing public awareness and in this case, making parents aware of the harmful effects they are exposing their children to.

    Pregnant women have been counseled about the ill effects smoking can have on their babies for the past 30 years and many did stop smoking because of it, including one of my sister-in-laws.

    Thanks for leaving such an insightful comment.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    6 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Peggy,

    Glad to hear that in Houston most of the indoor spaces ban smoking and am also glad that even before such laws were enacted you had a "no smoking" policy in your own home.

    Thanks for the vote up and the tweet. It's greatly appreciated.

  • Paul Kuehn profile image

    Paul Richard Kuehn 

    6 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand

    This is a very interesting and well-written hub. Yes, I definitely believe that smoking should be banned in all indoor and outdoor public areas. As early as 1992, smoking had been banned in public areas. I experienced this personally when I attended a baseball game at old County Stadium in Milwaukee. I was a smoker at the time and sitting in the right field bleachers enjoying the game. To have a cigarette, I had to exit the park since smoking was prohibited in all areas of this outdoor stadium. Voted up and sharing.

  • Deepak Chaturvedi profile image

    Deepak Chaturvedi 

    6 years ago from New Delhi, India

    Smoking is harmful in both ways active and total banned should be in practice.

  • FreezeFrame34 profile image


    6 years ago from Charleston SC

    Interestingly enough, my grandmother had emphysema, but never smoked a day in her life. My grandfather, on the other hand, smoked for forty-five years of his life and lived to be ninety-four. My mother remembers being in the car and coughing because the windows were all rolled up and her father was smoking. There should be laws against smoking with children in the car and while your pregnant! Great hub!

  • Peggy W profile image

    Peggy Woods 

    6 years ago from Houston, Texas

    Important topic and you shared valid reasons why second hand smoke is so harmful. I am so glad that most of the indoor spaces prohibit smoking in Houston. I can't stand the smell of cigarette smoke and many years ago we banned people from smoking in our home. If they just HAD to smoke, they had to go outside. Up votes and tweeted.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Sorry to learn that you lost both your parents to such devastating diseases. Regardless of the cause, it is heartbreaking to watch someone we love die from these diseases.

    I agree that it is good that smoking is being banned indoors but when smokers congregate at the entrance and puff away those going into the building are still affected by the second hand smoke. As mentioned in the article, smoking is starting to be banned outdoors in places like Delaware and NYC but it seems to me that such laws will be really hard to enforce. Still, they have the potential to greatly reduce the number of people who smoke in public, regardless of whether it's indoors or out.

  • Hyphenbird profile image

    Brenda Barnes 

    7 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

    My father died from COPD and emphysema. It was a terribly painful time for all of us, him physically and us emotionally. My mother died from a brain aneurysm and I wonder if second hand smoke contributed to that. I believe if people choose to smoke in the privacy of their own home and property, that is their right. But they should not expose countless others to their choice, including the innocent children in the home. Many laws have been enacted prohibiting smoking indoors and now I have to walk through a cloud of smoke just to get into a building. Smokers should be required to be out of the public so others are not being killed by their choices.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Thanks so much, Justsilvie, for sharing your powerful comment on my hub. You have been touched on all sides of the smoking issue and others can surely learn from the testimony you've given here.

    I am sorry about the loss of your Dad to second hand smoke, but am heartened to hear that you are getting the support you need to quit smoking. As you've so poignantly stated, some people never quit smoking, even when their very life depends on it. I'm glad that in your case, the stark reality of seeing the devastating effects of smoking first hand has given you the motivation and fortitude to quit.

    Thanks again for sharing your story so that others may learn from it.

  • profile image


    7 years ago

    Excellent Article. Glad your mom survived and is doing well, my father died from Lung Cancer and he was a non smoker, but worked in the Casinos in Las Vegas, so I am sure it was caused by the second hand smoke that reeked in those places before the bans.

    I quit smoking a month ago and it took a 3 week session of counseling in a rehab clinic for heart and circulation problems to finally get it in my head what a totally disgusting and self destructive habit this is. But this time I think the message sank in. I was in heaven when my CO test sank to 1.

    But it was weird seeing heart transplant patients and those recovering from heart attacks still smoking while there on recovery from surgery. It made realize just how strong an addiction this can be, because when you know, someone who has died has given you a part of their body so you can continue to live and you do not treat that gift with the reverence it deserves you know there is a very powerful and destructive force in play.

    As much as I am for personal freedom, I know people don’t always do what’s best for them and others without a push. People around the world talk about the US smoking bans, but now they have to also talk about the results… I read we have the lowest rate of young smoker’s in the world. What better result can there be to all the bans, than this?

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Jaye,

    Thanks for taking time to leave an insightful comment. I share your view that one person's rights end at the point where they interfere with the rights and health of another and agree that addictions are so strong that simply banning smoking or even making it illegal to sell cigarettes won't bring an end to people smoking.

    Don't know who first introduced tobacco and/or alcohol in North America, but know that addictions to both substances have ruined and continue to ruin the lives of millions and they add billions of dollars each year to the cost of health care.

  • JayeWisdom profile image

    Jaye Denman 

    7 years ago from Deep South, USA

    Terrific article on the dangers of secondhand smoke. I'm very anti-smoking and, as someone else said, it may be easier for me because I've never smoked. However, I breathed in a lot of sidestream smoke for many years and have some bronchial asthma as a result. One of my sons and three of my adult grandchildren smoke, though two of them are trying to reduce their smoking. I fully believe that cigarette addiction is as strong or stronger than heroin addiction.

    I think it was Native Americans who introduced tobacco to the settlers of North America, wasn't it? Of course, the white man got revenge by giving them alcohol, which has been the scourge of Native Americans ever since. Both actions were harbingers of bad times to come.

    It's too bad that history proves outlawed substances still get to addicted people. At least those who are not addicted should not have to suffer directly from the effects of others' addictions, as in the case of secondhand smoke. I know the banning of smoke in many public places makes a lot of smokers furious, but my feeling is that one person's rights end at the point where they interfere with my own. Still, even with smoking bans, hardcore smokers smoke at home and other places, and there are many, many indirect victims of both cigarettes (and alcohol). It's very sad...especially when the victims are hapless children.


  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Thank you so much DeBorrah K. Ogans. My hope is the same as yours- that others may be motivated to quit smoking. I so appreciate you stopping by and leaving such a thoughtful comment. You spread peace, love and blessings wherever you go with your kind heart and beautiful faith.

  • DeBorrah K. Ogans profile image

    DeBorrah K Ogans 

    7 years ago

    Happyboomernurse, Very good informative hub on smoking! You have made it quite clear the many hazards and side effects of smoking! Much to ponder here! I hope this will motivate many to stop or at least perhaps consider stop smoking... Sorry to hear about your Dad and so glad that your Mom NOW lives in a smoke free environment! Thank You for sharing, In HIS Love, Peace & Blessings!

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Welcome Glassvisage,

    I appreciate you taking time to write such a compassionate comment. When I was young, I never thought my mother would live this long, and I certainly never thought I'd live to see the day when smoking would be banned by law. I know the law is saving lives and I am grateful for that.

  • glassvisage profile image


    7 years ago from Northern California

    Thank you so much for your support and for creating this Hub. I am sorry to hear about your father, but am happy to hear that your mother is thriving in a smoke-free environment. I appreciate that you have shared your story with us!

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Prasetio,

    Thanks for leaving such an insightful and compassionate comment. We ALL benefit when we find a way to support smokers in their efforts to quit smoking. Since Delaware implemented the first bans on smoking indoors, and did public health education in addition to providing a support helpline for smokers who wanted to quit, the percentage of smokers in our state has steadily decreased.

  • prasetio30 profile image


    7 years ago from malang-indonesia

    I am not smoking and I don't hate smoker. But I am among millions people out there as a passive smoker. Passive smoker is more dangerous than active smoker. I hope there's a good rule to maintain active smoker. Better they want to quit from this bad activity quickly. Thank you very much.


  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Welcome Lulu Sue,

    You make an excellent point. Laws that ban smoking do make it harder, and also less socially acceptable, for the next generation to smoke. Unfortunately, there will always be those who will smoke, both indoors and outdoors, regardless of the laws. It's already illegal in many states to sell cigarettes to minors, but they still manage to obtain them.

    Thanks for reading my hub and leaving a comment.

  • LULU SUE1987 profile image

    LULU SUE1987 

    7 years ago

    Smoking kills people. It should be banned. Then at least the next generation will take it seriously.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Denise,

    Thanks for sharing your personal experiences in such vivid and memorable language. Yes, if the walls of your childhood home were covered with thick yellow residue one shudders to think of what one breathed in as a child.

    So sorry to hear your Mom died of lung cancer. It is still one of the most deadly forms of cancer and it is hard to watch a loved one suffer through debilitating and expensive treatments that more often than not, only prolong life a few months.

    You make an important point about the fact that chemicals that create physiological dependence were intentionally added to cigarettes by the tobacco companies because they wanted to ensure smokers would be lifetime customers. I was so shocked when I first learned how much effort and funding they put into making an already known addictive, deadly substance even more so.

  • Denise Handlon profile image

    Denise Handlon 

    7 years ago from North Carolina

    Gail-wonderful hub-voted up and awesome. I especially liked the links you included. I followed the one link and discovered that Virginia Beach still allows outdoor smoking which both surprises and disappoints me. I agree that smokers at the beach use the sand to drop their butts in-and not just the anatomical ones. It is disgusting.

    I grew up with a mother who smoked and when they moved to NC I rented their home. I scrubbed the walls down b/c they were just thick yellow walls of nicotine. I imagined then how my lungs were. When my husband and I moved to a new home we placed a 'no smoking' ban in our house, although he was a smoker; it offended the smokers who came over and not everyone was understanding.

    Mom died of lung cancer years later, but I do realize how addictive the habit is and how difficult to kick b/c it is more than just psychological...the chemicals in the cigarette create a physiological dependence as well.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Cardelean you are wise beyond your years. Focusing on your own health and modeling and promoting healthy habits for your children and for others is empowering and can make a big difference in their lives.

  • cardelean profile image


    7 years ago from Michigan

    It is my pleasure to follow you. You always have such fantastic topics. Unfortunately I know that this will not be his last. He does not take care of himself and it is very sad and frustrating at the same time. Our children were 2 1/2 and just turned one at the time. I know that I can only encourage and not do it for him, it has to be his choice. But I am sad for my children because at a young age they will most likely not have a father to grow up with. But I focus on my own health and trying to be there for them. That's why I have all of the healthy eating hubs! :)

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Oh Cardlean, my heart goes out to you. My husband had his first heart attack when our son was small, and he also suffers from diabetes. It's tough raising a family with a spouse who has potentially life-threatening diseases. Taking one day at a time gets you through, but the possibility of loss is always there in the back of your mind. Keep encouraging your husband to quit smoking as it takes the average smoker numerous attempts before they're successful in kicking this addiction.

    How sad that some of your young students are exposed to so much smoke that they smell like ashtrays. What a vivid, horrifying description.

    Thank you, as always, for following my hubs. I appreciate your support.

  • cardelean profile image


    7 years ago from Michigan

    What a fantastic, thought provoking hub. Although I would love for smoking to be banned even outdoors, I don't think that is reasonable or even possible. I'm so sorry that your Mom suffered so much with her health as a result of her father's smoking. I have students who I know "second hand smoke" packs of cigarettes a week. They smell like ashtrays when they come into class and it's still on their coats when they leave at the end of the day. It is very sad.

    My own husband is a smoker but he does not smoke in our house and never in our car. He has diabetes and had a massive heart attack almost two years ago. Although he's tried to quit a few times he has been unsuccessful. I really wish that he could kick the habit.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Ashantina,

    Thanks for your insightful comment which I totally agree with. I am glad you are vigilant about avoiding second hand smoke in order to protect your own health and prevent acute asthmatic attacks.

  • Ashantina profile image


    7 years ago

    V well written hub hboomer.

    Ive suffered from asthma since childhood, [family are all non-smokers] and because of this I cannot and refuse to be around smokers.

    The legislation is long overdue and is a very much needed wake up call to everyone who values their health and their life. This is real. And its unfortunate that your father, and many others, realised too late the effects of their actions....

    I hope this hub effects a change in someone out there to recognise the consequences of their addiction on the lives of others.


  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Welcome Cathylynn99,

    Sorry to hear that you and your sisters suffered health problems because your parents smoked inside your house. Like you, I hope this hub will help parents make the connection that second hand smoke is harmful to their children's health and that if they can't kick their addiction to smoking, they will at least vow to never smoke inside their homes or cars.

    Thank you for pointing out that I needed to change the word, "insensitivity" to "sensitivity." I have made the correction.

  • cathylynn99 profile image


    7 years ago from northeastern US

    one place you have "insensitivity" when you mean "sensitivity".

    my sisters and i as children got pneumonia and ear infections from our parents' smoking. i hope parents will read your article and decide not to smoke in their own house if there are children there. thanks for broaching this important topic.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Vocalcoach. I agree that the tobacco companies care about profits, not the deaths of those who use their products. Even worse, evidence was presented in a class action lawsuit years ago that the tobacco companies were doing research to determine how to make cigarettes more addictive and that they were gearing their advertisements to young children because they knew kids could be more easily persuaded to start smoking. If they could get them hooked at a young age, they would likely have a life-long customer. After years of litigation in which they initially denied any blame the tobacco companies finally paid out huge settlements to the states. The 1999 movie, "The Insider" (Russel Crowe starred in it) was based on that lawsuit.

    Delaware used the bulk of the money it got from the settlement to promote public health campaigns against smoking and to help those who smoked get treatment for their smoking addiction.

    Thank you for your condolences about my parents. However, Mom's still living, probably because she's been in a smoke free environment for so many years, now. Dad's death from heart disease was probably partially related to his years of smoking, but he had other risks for heart disease so it's impossible to know how much his death was attributable to smoking.

    What is known, is that smoking, and also exposure to second hand smoke increases anyone's risk of heart disease.

    Thanks for rating this hub up. I greatly appreciate your support.

  • vocalcoach profile image

    Audrey Hunt 

    7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

    A wonderful hub on smoking! I am so sorry about your parents deaths caused by smoking. The tobacco companies are only concerned with money - they care less about the deadly effects of their products. They need to be shut down completely. They should also be held responsible for offering programs to addiction. Great article. Rated up, useful and awesome!

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Dearabbysmom. Thanks so much for leaving such a compassionate comment. I totally agree with what you've said. My own adult son has been trying to kick his smoking habit for years and is now on his 6th or 7th attempt. Hopefully, he'll succeed this time. Most smokers who eventually succeed in quitting for the long-term are like my son- they try and try again, continually relapsing until they're finally able to kick the habit for good.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Cherrycrime26, thanks so much for reading my hub and for your feedback. Your comment underscores the fact that there are always potential victims when anyone smokes in the same room as others. It sounds as if your patient is in complete denial as to how her smoking affects others, as was my Dad, so I really understand your frustration.

    I assume you're doing homecare nursing? If your patient's own medical condition is being adversely affected by her smoking, is it possible to get a doctor's order for a medical social worker visit to address that issue? When I used to do homecare we had a wonderful medical social worker who was helpful in getting patients to work through their denial about self-destructive behavior and back then, medicare and many private insurance companies would pay for such counseling. Don't know if that's still the case.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi Acaetnna, Yes, it is easy for non-smokers like you and me to be antismoking, but as you've compassionately pointed out, smoking is a very strong addiction and many have trouble kicking the habit even when they desperately want to. When Delaware received its share of tobacco settlement money years ago, the state spent a large portion of that funding on public health campaigns against smoking and also for emotional and practical support in helping those addicted to smoking kick their habit. Many were successful, but others, such as my own adult son tried to quit numerous times but after a few months of success, he would fall back into his old smoking pattern. He recently started on chantix again and will hopefully kick the habit for good this time.

  • dearabbysmom profile image


    7 years ago from Indiana

    I have such compassion for people who are gripped by a tobacco addiction. Obviously it's terribly hard to break, or they would not endure the inconvenience and shame that society places on them. But I don't believe we can ease up on these laws, as innocent people are being sickened.

  • cherrycrime26 profile image

    January Moon 

    7 years ago from NY, Now Living in Atlanta Ga

    Great article on second smoke, I have a patient who is a chain smoker her daughter and grand children all have chronic asthma, to me, she is very selfish, putting others at danger because of a habbit she cant kick, smoking around others on a daily basis is just plan out selfish! Im no on her case, I will not be a victim to 2nd hand smoke!

  • acaetnna profile image


    7 years ago from Guildford

    What a great hub. I am totally anti-smoking - full stop! It's easy for me because I have never smoked but I guess it's not easy for those you are addicted. I still can't abide walking past someone who is smoking and then I breath in their smoke. Smoking certainly destroys lives, as you have so clearly highlighted. Thank you for sharing this useful hub.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Welcome, KarenBorn2Write,

    Thank you for sharing your personal experience related to this issue, though I'm sorry to hear of your Dad's suffering, and also your own bronchial issues. I do believe that it is our personal stories which have the most impact on hopefully touching others and encouraging them to change their habits and views about smoking.

    Recent legislation helps prevent damage from second hand smoke, especially to infants and children, yet I fear some parents who are smokers and are still in denial will be smoking more frequently within their own homes to avoid the stigma and increasing difficulty of smoking in public places and outdoors.

  • KarenBorn2Write profile image


    7 years ago from Lincoln, CA

    Nicely done. My Dad and Mom both smoked, and he also suffered many heart issues. He had a triple, then later a double bypass; he also had many balloon angioplasties. Though he lived into his late 80's, I know his life was not as it could have been. I, too, have suffered with brochial issues. Thank you so much for making the facts of this crystal clear.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Welcome, Alekhouse. Thanks for taking time to read my hub and add a comment. I greatly appreciate it.

    Hi Stephanie. Thanks for the vote up. Having never smoked myself and witnessed first hand the deleterious effects of second hand smoke, I too, was delighted when a comprehensive smoking ban law was passed in my state.

    I'm not sure, but I think it actually does ban smoking in cars when there are children on board. That's probably one of the worst places a parent could smoke as the space inside the car is so confined. Thanks for leaving a lively and engaging comment.

  • Happyboomernurse profile imageAUTHOR

    Gail Sobotkin 

    7 years ago from South Carolina

    Hi BobbiRant,

    You make some interesting points. I myself was quite shocked when I first learned that smoking was being banned at some outdoor areas but since people were going outside more often to smoke and they tended to loiter at the entrance doors you had to walk through a haze of smoke to get into the "smoke free" buildings.

    Cigarette butts, particularly at the beaches where people tend to use the sand as one big ash tray is a litter problem that should greatly diminish with the new laws, although it's a "side-effect" of the law and not the main intention.

    Both alcohol and smoking do destroy lives but the laws are very different regarding them. Of course laws change over time and can swing back and forth such as prohibition on alcohol compared to its relative lack of regulation today. Thanks for a comment that adds to the substance of this hub.

  • Stephanie Henkel profile image

    Stephanie Henkel 

    7 years ago from USA

    This hub highlights the dangers of secondhand smoke so well! So many smokers still refuse to believe how their smoke affects the people around them. When smoking was banned in restaurants and office buildings, I was delighted! Now, one of the things that concerns me most is seeing parents smoking in a car with children aboard. It's impossible to regulate everything! Thanks for a great hub - voted up and useful.

  • alekhouse profile image

    Nancy Hinchliff 

    7 years ago from Essex Junction, Vermont

    Good article and rationalization.

  • BobbiRant profile image


    7 years ago from New York

    A very well written hub. I enjoyed the read. I'm glad your mom survived the lung problems and am sorry your dad had such ill affects from it all. Great hub. I guess I'm not sure how I feel about the outdoor smoking, but I know cigarette butts can litter the landscape. Indoors makes a lot of sense to me. I guess, like alcohol, I think both substances can destroy lives, yet somehow a softer pedal is done on alcohol, which means alcohol lobby people have more money to spend. If cigarettes are banned everywhere they need to make it an illegal substance and Not sell it in stores. I enjoyed the hub.


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