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Hell, the whiners and crusaders (if we have to ban something, how about whining and crusading for half-wit causes? I'd be on board for that.) even temporarily got foie gras banned here. But a hot dog joint stood up to the bullshit and it went down.

Well I'm not sure it's a cause to whine and crusade about - can think of a lot more important things - but I'm one of those people that seeks out smoke free bars now. To not go home smelling like an ashtray and to not have my nasal passages swollen from the smoke - I'm just more comfortable. That's not to say I don't frequent smoking bars as well because I do - but I'm happy to keep the smoke outside and away from me.

I'm a nonsmoker, and I don't particularly care for the odor of cigarette smoke, but you hit the nail on the head. Yesterday, it was smoking in bars, today it's fast food, tomorrow it'll be sugar, the day after tomorrow it'll be coffee, then red meat, then all refined carbohydrates, then alcohol and on and on.

Government is trying to save us from ourselves in order to get a firmer grip on our lives.

As a former smoker, I'm happy that bars are smoke free now. Like Jeff, I don't want to come home smelling like an ashtray. Also, since I stopped smoking, the smell of it really gets to me now. When before I would fill an ashtray in a bar up over a couple of beers.

And we're not telling people they can't smoke. Or that they can't eat McDonald's. I think the smokers just need to get over it and if it means they have fewer cigarettes in a day, then maybe we're helping them not get lung cancer.

Well, Karen, a couple of points:


"And we're not telling people they can't smoke. Or that they can't eat McDonald's."


You might not be, but a lot of people are subtly pushing towards that but every year or so finding another avenue to cut off.  There was a commercial a few years ago from Truth or whatever in which a tabaco exec was in a futuristic jail, all because he sold tobacco.  I think that was a bit of brainwashing--telling the younger generation to push for that.


"I think the smokers just need to get over it and if it means they have fewer cigarettes in a day, then maybe we're helping them not get lung cancer."


A bit of sarcasm?  But then again, who gets to make that choice?  The individual, or society?  I'm scared of a society that forces me to be healthy, that picks and chooses LEGISLATIVELY what should and shoudn't be legal.  And the fast food push is beginning.You can feel it.


There's no stopping the anti-smoking train at this point. The tobacco companies have been villified in the media and by the government (granted, often rightfully so) to the point that it's hard for activists to really want to get behind them, ACLU-style. Also, smokers don't make the best activists in that they too are considered a societal scourge by many (and when it comes down to it, all smokers figure they'll quit soon enough and when they do, they become bigger anti-smoke fascists than those who never smoked at all, most of the time).

I always thought that St Paul had their shit together when, right before the state-wide ban, the city said that if you could prove that over half your establishment's income was from alcohol sales instead of food, you could have a smoking section in the bar. That seemed fair to me and a lot of bars in the area installed amazing ventilation systems to boot. Of course, a few months later the state went no-smoke across the board and all was moot. Shame.

Now that the weather's improving, smokers don't have to darken the doorways with their depressed slouches - we can smoke on the patio! Until that privilege is taken from us as well, that is.

I don't smoke. I used to. I used to smoke two packs a day and did that for 25 years.I smoked Kools because they were the only cigarettes I could taste over the cocaine.

I worked for the advertising agency that created Joe Camel. I went to long, smoke-filled meetings in the RJR HQ in Winston Salem.

Even after I quit, when smokers were pushed outside,I would go into the chill and hang out with the smokers because they were always, pound for pound, more interesting than the people inside. One night I met David Sedaris' sister. And yes, she was interesting.

I play blues in a band. Up until January 1, I played in smokey bars and came home stinking like the inside of an old man's pocket.I don't miss that.

Times change. In the early 70's, everyone smoked dope in public.Even the police looked away.

Now things are so tight-assed that people are shunned for ordering extra cheese.

As a country, we have grown more intolerant and while I don't miss the stink of cigarette smoke in my clothes, I do miss the freedom to do whatever I felt like without bluenoses, left and right, insisting that freedom meant I was free to do whatever they thought was OK.

Sugar Tax on soda pop?

Look it up, people. Scary.


I'm also a former smoker and I lost my mother to lung cancer and strokes caused by her cigarette addiction.

Smoke away, if you want, just don't blame me for not wanting to share the experience -- or share the cigarette with you which ends up happening if I breathe in your second-hand smoke.

In the Florida there's a law about no smoking at inside restaurants if the place serves food as a certain percentage of its business. Luckily, there are also numerous open-air restaurants so smokers and non-smokers can peacefully co-exist. I just sit upwind of the smokers.

I don't glare at you if you smoke, unless you drop your cigarette butt to the ground. In that case I will pointedly suggest you pick it up and put it in an ash tray or stub it out and place it in the trash. Throw it in the ocean and I'll blister your ears. I've seen the x-rays of sea turtles who died of starvation because they'd mistaken floating cigarette butts for edible shrimp and ate so many they were permanently full.

"I smoked Kools because they were the only cigarettes I could taste over the cocaine."

Honest to God one of the best sentences I've read in a very long time. David, if you haven't used that as the first sentence in a can I?

I agree with Alison, David. Awesome visual.

I'm a former smoker - clean 17 years now. I prefer to be in a smoke free environment, but if I'm having a good time in a bar with friends, where there's smoke, I'll stay and resign myself to smelling like an ashtray.

People can smoke if they want. Eat sugar if they want. Drink if they want. What pisses me off is they make these bad lifestyle, knowing they're bad choices, and expect us -- taxpayers -- to pay for their bad fucking decisions, on numerous levels, yes, including healthcare. They can afford to buy cigarettes at $4 to $8 bucks a pack and smoke at least one pack a day, but they turn down company offered health insurance because it's too "expensive" -- that fucking pisses me off.

Alison (and Lori) I aim to write clean and honest sentences. When one jumps out, I'm happy.

Take it, Alison, with my blessings.

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