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rotorhead
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November 18, 2010 1:51 am  

Smoking is still legal. Many of the restaurants on this island chose to allow smoking. That was their right.

Not anymore! The law has changed! Smoking is no longer legal in restaurants.

Asbestos was considered an ideal building material. For 100 years asbestos was used in many buildings because it was cheap had great insulating qualities and was fire retardant. It was completely legal. Many businesses used it. It was used until the 1970s. By that time scientific research showed that asbestos was responsible for many health problems. Asbestosis, mesothelioma and cancer. It was identified as a pollutant and banned as part of the Clean Air Act in 1970.

How is this different from tobacco? Tobacco has been determined to be responsible for over 450,000 deaths a year. Would you argue to continue to allow the use asbestos in public restaurants. It is the same property rights issue, or is it a public health issue? I guess we could have restaurants which used asbestos in their buildings and restaurants which don't. The public could take their chances. While tobacco might currently be legal, it is the next asbestos.

BTW - I never voted to ban tobacco in restaurants. The senate never asked my opinion. I do, however, agree with their decision.


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aussie
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November 18, 2010 2:23 am  

Not anymore! The law has changed! Smoking is no longer legal in restaurants.

LOL...yup.

Asbestos, DDT, Paraquat, lead paint...the list goes on and on. The risks were not known and no one chose to accept those risks. Tobacco and alcohol are different. They are intentionally consumed and the risks are known.

OK...sign me up. I'm on board. Let's legislate our way to freedom! Who should we go after next?


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redeyesadie
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November 18, 2010 3:24 am  

Asbestos, DDT, Paraquat, lead paint...the list goes on and on. The risks were not known and no one chose to accept those risks. Tobacco and alcohol are different. They are intentionally consumed and the risks are known.

Actually, tobacco and alcohol are different. Smoking was once promoted as being healthy. Medical research has since shown that even limited tobacco smoking and/or exposure to second hand smoke is detrimental to your health. There is no way to smoke a little and not risk serious harm. Alcohol, on the other hand, can be consumed in moderation without any known harm to the user or those around her/him. Also, depending upon the type and amount of alcohol consumed, there is evidence to suggest some health benefits. It is when people imbibe to excess that it becomes problematic.


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loungestx
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November 18, 2010 4:02 am  

You also have to address the risk to employees in a smoke filled environment not just the patrons.


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stiphy
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November 18, 2010 9:02 am  

The comparisons to asbestos is a non-sequiter. No one gets any enjoyment out of having asbestos construction versus non asbestos construction. But while I don't understand it, and clearly neither do those supporting the smoking ban, those who smoke cigarettes actually do get pleasure and enjoyment out of doing so. To take away their right to open an establishment that allows them to pursue what makes them happy goes directly against what this country was founded upon. Just because you can't understand why smoking makes them happy doesn't mean they don't have the right to pursue that happiness.

A big sign saying "we allow smoking on our premises which will kill you, enter at your own risk" seems to be the peaceful way to address the issues brought up here. Those who don't want to be exposed to smoke would choose not to enter, either as customers or employees. No one would be unknowlingly exposed to the negative aspects of cigerette smoke who didn't choose to be.

Rather than this peaceful approach we choose to use government's monopoly on legalized violence to force our views on others. This is another example of that. Personally I believe violence should always be the last resort but that's just me; unfortunately most of my fellow citizens don't agree any more. Hence we have a situation where there are no "rights" for those in the minority, just "laws" that violently restrict rights of everyone who can't defend themselves from the majority.

Like I said, I don't care about cigerette smoke and actually like the effect of this law on a personal level. But I tend to think that principals are important when it comes to laws and the principal here scares me. The next thing will be a ban on something that I enjoy doing and I won't have a moral leg to stand on in protest if I supported the smoking ban.

Sean


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Neil
 Neil
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November 18, 2010 10:15 am  

The idea of "rights and liberty" to smoke or anything else is poetic but not particularly helpful. Even the so called inalienable right to happiness has it's obvious limits. In the real world we only have privileges that the people agree to whether by law or constitution (same thing really). And that social contract continues to evolve.

With regard to restaurants. I don't have the right to dictate their menu or price and can also exercise my right not to go. But the government has been given the responsibility to ensure a safe workplace for all employees and to protect the public's health. It's no different than inspecting Hovensa and requiring safe gas pumps and licensing doctors. If you want to die of lung cancer or food poisoning that's your choice, but as the owner or patron you do not have the right to take me down with you.


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speee1dy
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November 18, 2010 10:41 am  

i have found that a lot of people who think it is okay to smoke pot find it abhorrent that people smoke cigarettes. Wonder Why.
it is also a shame that people are getting so outraged over this, don't see this kind of outrage over the violence on these islands..


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Lizard
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November 18, 2010 7:08 pm  

Outrage?????????? Most are just opinions from a very small group on this forum. rks statement was sick, but expected!


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Neil
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November 19, 2010 1:59 am  

i have found that a lot of people who think it is okay to smoke pot find it abhorrent that people smoke cigarettes. Wonder Why.
it is also a shame that people are getting so outraged over this, don't see this kind of outrage over the violence on these islands..

It's only a matter of time before some crazed nicotine starved diner pulls a sharpened medicare card on some poor outspoken tree-hugging cancer-free fellow patron. Then the sh*t will really hit the Depends.


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speee1dy
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November 19, 2010 10:34 am  

Lizard, I did not know that was an expected comment from rks. Neil that was good.


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rks
 rks
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November 19, 2010 12:19 pm  

@Speee1dy, he's gloating because I briefly descended to, or perhaps even below his level to make a point. He's been waging war with me online and off ever since I called him out for being a troll one day a long time ago.


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Lizard
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November 19, 2010 12:36 pm  

rks, you need help! You make stuff up and believe it. I haven't waged war with you online or off line. Your posts show what you are.


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speee1dy
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November 19, 2010 1:31 pm  

didn't mean to start anything. sorry. please be friends again. i don't like strife 😛


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rotorhead
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November 19, 2010 7:50 pm  

i have found that a lot of people who think it is okay to smoke pot find it abhorrent that people smoke cigarettes. Wonder Why.
it is also a shame that people are getting so outraged over this, don't see this kind of outrage over the violence on these islands..

FYI - I would find it just as disgusting if someone sitting near me in a public restaurant lit up a joint. On the other hand many people who think that they should be able to smoke tobacco anywhere they like because it is their right, get upset if people smoke pot in the privacy of their own homes. Go figure.

Why people think that one plant is good and another is bad eludes me, especially when the good plant causes so many deaths each year.


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rotorhead
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November 19, 2010 9:28 pm  

The comparisons to asbestos is a non-sequiter. No one gets any enjoyment out of having asbestos construction versus non asbestos construction. But while I don't understand it, and clearly neither do those supporting the smoking ban, those who smoke cigarettes actually do get pleasure and enjoyment out of doing so. To take away their right to open an establishment that allows them to pursue what makes them happy goes directly against what this country was founded upon. Just because you can't understand why smoking makes them happy doesn't mean they don't have the right to pursue that happiness.

A big sign saying "we allow smoking on our premises which will kill you, enter at your own risk" seems to be the peaceful way to address the issues brought up here. Those who don't want to be exposed to smoke would choose not to enter, either as customers or employees. No one would be unknowlingly exposed to the negative aspects of cigerette smoke who didn't choose to be.

Sean

OK how about a different comparison. Many people enjoy having sex. Having sex is a completely legal and healthy activity. But try having sex in a public restaurant, even with the owners permission, and many of the patrons would probably complain. You would probably be arrested. All that should be required is a sign saying "we allow sex on our premises which might turn you on, enter at your own risk".

What about age qualifications? Should smoking restaurants allow children inside? Children are not allowed to buy tobacco, why should they be allowed to breath second hand smoke? Is a child capable of informed consent when it comes to tobacco? We don't allow children to witness sex even if they want to.


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billd
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November 19, 2010 9:42 pm  

This nothing new. It is a real simple thing to do. Smorkers just don't smoke in places that others are in. I have left places where there are smokers and I don't even rent to smokers. I don't need to take in their smoke.

This law has been passed in NY and NY and many states. After a period of time it settles down and works great. So the VI is not the first to do this. In fact it probably one of the last.

billd


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aussie
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November 19, 2010 11:02 pm  

But try having sex in a public restaurant, even with the owners permission, and many of the patrons would probably complain.

LOL...sex is an even worse comparison than asbestos Uh...if watching other people have sex offends you, why the heck are you sitting at a table when the sign on the door clearly notified you that sex was allowed inside? Oh yeah, you wanted the steak.

But I'm with ya!! Let's clean this place up! We'll legislate the hell outa them! No more sex in restaurants! No more smokin' pot in restaurants! We'll crush 'em. We'll make 'em submit. WE HAVE A FRICKIN' MAJORITY and we'll ban anything we wanna! Later we'll show them how they benefited economically and how the world is a much better place when they live the way we want them to live. Damn, this is fun. Kinda makes ya feel powerful.

Who should we go after next? How about banning young kids in restaurants? We can probably find plenty of studies to back our position. They foul themselves at the dinner table for heaven's sake! I don't need that wafting over from 5 feet away while I'm enjoying my steak! A kid's scream can probably hit enough decibels that we cite noise pollution studies. If nothing else, it stresses the hell outa me when they run around screaming. Stress kills! Can we get a majority on this one?

Then who should we go after?


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chefnoah
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November 19, 2010 11:19 pm  

You can ban children. Business will boom!


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aussie
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November 19, 2010 11:29 pm  

You can ban children. Business will boom!

Ah hell! We even have a precedent. This should be a piece of cake! A handful of senators and it's a done deal!


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chefnoah
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November 20, 2010 12:06 pm  

I think you could change "screaming children" to smoking and it would read the same.

I can't wait, nothing but positive change for the restaurants and the diners (tu)


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aussie
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November 20, 2010 12:20 pm  

I can't wait, nothing but positive change for the restaurants and the diners (tu)

Yup, me too! The sooner we get the smokers, young kids, elderly, people wearing cologne/perfume/hair spray, and the color red outa the restaurants, the better our steaks will taste. Freedom and property rights are just so overrated.


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aussie
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November 20, 2010 1:57 pm  

I think you could change "screaming children" to smoking and it would read the same.

EXACTLY, chefnoah! And that would be a perfect example of the business owner/property owner deciding what legal activities are/are not allowed on their own property. Many of the restaurant owners on this island exercised their rights and made the decision to allow smoking. That did not please a lot of steak-starved, tobacco-phobic diners who asserted their fictitious rights to eat the steaks while dictating what should/should not be allowed on someone else's property. Solution? Simple. Enact a law. That steak comes at one hell of a price. Where is the caboose on that train?

Heh heh... I wish I had the time to write a Smoker's Guide to the VI. That 20 foot rule is gonna create some really interesting places where it is legal to smoke like right in the middle of Buddhoe Park during the carnival parade. We could organize a smoking flash mob...LOL


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A Davis
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November 22, 2010 6:36 am  

Overall, smoking bans tend to have a positive affect on businesses, and are self enforced by the public and business owners. They just take getting used to. Time and again as more jurisdictions enact such bans most smokers have altered their behavior to conform rather than face confrontation. Like the "pooper scooper" laws, we will one day look back in amazement that they didn't exist sooner.

I should probably have stopped at the last period, but... (Soap box please.)

What smokers need to recognize is that smoking of tobacco is a filthy habit. It turns your teeth and fingers yellow, robs the addict and those regularly exposed to their practices of health, and pollutes the environment.

Offended? Well, legal or not, how do you think the majority of non-smokers feel when smokers elect (need?) to light up in their presence? Why do you think many property owners would rather not rent to smokers? Why does smoking in it negatively affect the value of an automobile? Why do so many smokers feel it is okay to flick their butts to the ground?

If you were at a restaurant enjoying a dinner with your family and the people at the next table got loud, cursing or discussing their sexual conquests in great detail what would you think? What would you do? Certainly their behavior is rude, and you'd likely feel uncomfortable and want them to stop or go elsewhere. Would you hesitate to say something to them and/or the management? Probably not. But what law(s) are they breaking that don't violate their rights? Don't they have a right to free speech? Are they "harming" you beyond offending you? Will you leave the restaurant with even an ever so slight increased risk of real physical illness?

Smoking may be a right, but non-smokers have rights too. Smoking is so bad for you and those around you that each package of tobacco products carries a mandated warning that it can kill you. People who do not smoke, the majority, need to be protected from people who do smoke. I'll give you your pound of flesh Shylock, but "no jot of blood." If you want to harm yourself, well I suppose that is your right, but as Edward pointed out, it stops before my nose.

On a personal note, I'll tell you my mother smoked, and it killed her. I tried to get her to stop long before it got bad, but she was hooked. By the time she quit it was too late. I got to see a once strong woman struggle for breath, loose the ability to walk up stairs, and finally end up on a medical respirator. Then, after she was gone I got to paint the ceiling above the recliner she'd sit in and smoke as she watched t.v. or read-scrubbed it, then applied four coats of stain sealing primer before the smoke residue stopped bleeding through. So smokers, think about what you are doing to yourselves and those around you. Oh, and one more thing about my mom, worst of all, she didn't get to hold her grandchildren.

I miss her.

Peace, and thanks for your time.

My apologies to William S. for perverting his metaphor

thank you.

that deserves a re-post.


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speee1dy
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November 22, 2010 10:43 am  

aussie, with you there on the cologne and perfume and any strong odor. i don't care that i can not smoke indoors at restaurants anymore, lately i have not even been doing it even before the ban, no big deal.
now we do need to shift our focus to the perfumes and colonges people wear. now that is abhorant.


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aussie
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November 22, 2010 12:09 pm  

Yeah, agreed speee1dy. That stuff is nasty! I remember overhearing someone creating a real stink about smokers while I was choking on her perfume from 2 offices away.

I don't give a rat's a$$ about not being able to smoke in a restaurant. The only "restaurant" I've lit up in was Coconuts while sitting along the rail under the stars. So, that's not the nature of my objection.

What I find funny as hell is that it may still be legal to light up at Coconuts. I'll bet there's a spot in the dining area that's 20 feet from each of the 3 roofs - just a little circle maybe only 4 feet across...LOL Perhaps all smokers need to carry one of those wheeled measuring thingies the police use and a piece of chalk 😀


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