Thursday, December 6, 2007

Smoking Ban in Private Restaurants Passes the House

HB4163 passed the House yesterday. It would prohibit a business owner, including the owner of a bar or restaurant, from choosing to allow smoking in his or her establishment. I voted no. Tough vote in some ways, but not really.

Hey, I don't smoke, and don't like smoke in my face when I am out for dinner. I understand all too well the health risks of smoking. My dad died of lung cancer after smoking for 60 years. He was in the prime of his life at age 72. As healthy as he was in all other respects, he might still be with us today at age 91.

In spite of this, I cannot get around the Constitution, nor the principles upon which it stands, one of those being the right to private property. We must not infringe on the rights of private property to engage in any LEGAL activity they desire. No one is being forced to patronize a privately owned restaurant where smokers are.

I only wish I could be as eloquent as some of our founders...

"The moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the law of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence." --John Adams

"Among the natural rights of the colonists are these: first, a right to life; secondly, to liberty; thirdly to property; together with the right to support and defend them in the best manner they can." --Samuel Adams

Read up on the bill and find out how your Representative voted here:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I completely agree with your comments. As a non-smoker, with a parent suffering health complications from years of smoking, I still must defend the rights of others. Let common economics of supply-and-demand take control here. Patrons can decide where to spend their leisure time and their $$; if there isn't a demand for "smoking" establishments, they will soon go out of business.

As a side note, perhaps we should require everyone to "weigh in" before entering a restaurant, and the government could dictate portion sizes accordingly. Obesity is causing exponentially more health-related problems than smoking... Just a thought.