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Proviso Probe

Saturday, April 01, 2006

GOV, to what extent should smoking be banned?

The consensus is that Prohibition was a bad idea.

Then why are we creeping toward prohibition of tobacco products?

I am firmly against blanket bans on smoking. Among other things they don’t work particularly well.

For example the prohibition against smoking on CTA property is almost never enforced. I’d rather have one car designated smoking after 9 PM than have to police smoking restrictions myself. I’d rather have part of the platform designated for smoking than to have someone light-up next to me.

I perceive that many people in modern society are angry. Citizens on the Right and the Left are using government to coerce and punish people who aren’t living life in a way that the activists approve of.

If you don’t approve of people’s sex lives make it difficult for them to obtain contraception.

If you don’t approve of people’s chemical vices make it difficult for them to partake.

Enough already!

Society has an interest in reducing smoking, but stigmatizing and punishing smokers is mean and gratuitous.

Why is it that we think we need one set of standards for everybody? Why not craft public policy that creates a mix of smoking and non-smoking bars?

Pro-smoking establishments claim it will hurt their bottom line to ban smoking. Why not grant a number of smoking licenses and let establishments bid for them? Over time the number of licenses could be reduced, especially if the bids decrease in value.


  • Obviously this is one issue on which Rep. Yarbrough and I don't see eye-to-eye at this time. Yarbrough has made a bill to allow counties to ban smoking one of her signature issues in the current legislative session.

    See State Journal-Register (Adriana Colindres) for news on the latest progress.

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 2:56 PM, April 01, 2006  

  • Joe said
    This is just another way of the goverment controlling us. So much for freedom

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:02 AM, April 02, 2006  

  • Mr. Nyberg,

    We may never see eye to eye on legislation concerning the effects of second hand smoke on patrons and employees of establishments. But once again this legislation is concerned with local control. The bill I passed in the House which has been forwarded to the Governor does the following:

    Amends the Illinois Clean Indoor Air Act. Allows non-home rule counties, in addition to home rule units and non-home rule municipalities, to regulate smoking in public places in a manner no less restrictive than regulation under the Act. Allows all municipalities and counties to regulate smoking in any enclosed indoor area used by the public or serving as a place of work if the area does not fall within the definition of a "public place" under the Act.

    This bill is a "clean-up" bill to HB 672 passed last year which levels the playing field for unincorporated areas in counties. This language was ommitted in the act several years ago by a previous sponsor. The Senate sponsor and I reviewed the language and made it a point this year to include it.
    The county board would have to address the issue IF THEY WISH! ...or they can nothing. The language is permissive.

    By Anonymous Rep. Karen Yarbrough, at 10:05 AM, April 02, 2006  

  • Carl is right on about this issue

    By Anonymous Carl Korn, at 3:19 PM, April 02, 2006  

  • I'm totally with Karen on this one.

    By Anonymous cynthia, at 4:18 PM, April 02, 2006  

  • Smoking is not a public right. My wife has asthma, we cannot go to any restaurant or pub that allows smoking anywhere as it affects her severely. Second hand smoke is clearly a cause of cancer. Smoke only in your own homes and/or on a deserted island where you harm no one else except yourself.

    By Anonymous garywoll, at 11:45 PM, April 04, 2006  

  • Gary, if society creates a system that allows smoking bars while having a generous mix of non-smoking bars, would this be acceptable to you?

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 12:40 PM, April 05, 2006  

  • Yes! But woefully lacking in Maywood itself is a SINGLE restaurant or banquet hall that prohibits smoking. We simply have no options for the two of us to have a drink and/or a meal in Maywood. The lack of healthy eating in Maywood is highlighted by one reataurant that seems to have so few calls for healthy eating that it doesn't even, after 20 years in business, have any diet drinks. Seems pettty but I believe it is synonymous with serious health/exercise problems that are part and parcel of so-called poorer communities and those who cater to their unhealthy lifestyles.

    By Anonymous garywoll, at 11:22 PM, April 05, 2006  

  • I agree that there should be non-smoking venues available before the first smoking license is granted.

    The hotel & restaurant people screwed-up by fighting for the status quo instead of a workable compromise.

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 11:23 AM, April 06, 2006  

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