Smoke free and breathing easy

The smoking ban will provide a greater assurance that secondhand smoke won’t be a health problem

News of the state’s new smoking ban was like hearing music to my, well, lungs really. I can now somewhat relax my concerns about secondhand smoke and rest and breathe a bit more easily.

I can now go out to eat dinner and comfortably enjoy the experience without having to inhale smoke that drifts over from the bar across the room.

I can now go out, if I so desire, to a nightclub, bowling alley, or bar without having to worry about coming home wreaking of smoke, wanting to shower and change right away.

For me, the new smoking ban that will take effect in May will make my life more comfortable, simply because I won’t have to be around smokers as often as I am now.

I know that some people have their reservations about the smoking ban and how they believe that it is not really a good thing for the people.

One of the biggest uncertainties that I have heard voiced is that telling people where they can and cannot smoke oversteps the government’s boundaries into the personal lives of its citizens. They see this as just another step toward a “big brother” type of government or an expansion of the government’s control over us.

In one sense, I can definitely see the strong points of their argument. Smoking is a personal choice of the smoker and no one should have the right to tell them they can’t do it. However, when other people’s health is on the line, especially mine, I understand where the government stands on smoking in public places.

Another worry is that the ban will have a negative impact on business owners because people won’t want to come in anymore because they can’t smoke. I do not feel that the ban will have any substantial impact on businesses. Although people may enjoy smoking while they are out, I do not believe that it will deter them from continuing to visit those establishments.

In the short-term, I can see where smokers may not want to go out to the bar or to dinner because they are not allowed to smoke within those buildings, but eventually they will understand that it is not completely unreasonable. This will especially become true once they realize that if they still want to go out for a drink or to a restaurant, by law they have no choice but to not smoke.

The smoking ban has many good points which, in my opinion, outweigh any negative ones it may have. For one, although the chances are slim, I don’t have to worry about the cancerous effects of secondhand smoke while I am inside. If I’m sitting in a restaurant and I happen to breathe in cigarette smoke, I can’t help but to think about all the dangerous chemicals I’m inhaling from someone else’s enjoyment. My health can now be, somewhat, reassured when I’m in an indoor public setting.

Maybe this new smoking ban will even motivate social smokers to knock the habit. Without the luxury to smoke while out at the bar, nightclub, or even just hanging out with friends on top of the rising cost of cigarettes, social smokers may realize that now is the time to quit.

Whether or not this new legislation will lead to decreased cigarette consumption, decreased business production, or greater government control, it benefits me all the same and I can now, literally, breathe easier.