19 thoughts on “On claims, dubious.”

  1. Could you provide the context?

    Because “Clean Air” usually refers to tree-huggers’ concerns regarding the environment. It’s health vs. environmentalism.

  2. Smoke where ever the hell you want as long as its not in the booth next to my 3 year old niece! This is completly about clean air, they didnt ban smoking on airlines as an anti-smoking ploy they did it becuase it was giving people cancer!

  3. Here, the term ‘clean air’ is a misnomer. It is used to refer only to ozone, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide or any of the other hundreds of chemicals in our air outside.

    Clean air is about more than chemical plant emissions. It is about indoor air quality (which in some places is worse than outdoor air quality). Smoking is a big problem with Indoor Air Pollution, but air circulation and fumes from carpets and indoor products are also a big problem. Glad their at least addressing part of the problem. Clean Air actually should refer to both indoor and outdoor, but typically is used to just refer to outdoor.

    As for outdoor clean air being a ‘tree-hugger’s’ issue (and therefore apparently a complete overreaction by twenty somethings with no understanding of the real world and how money works, or some such stereotype of environmentalists), I respectfully, and vehemittly disagree. Tens of thousands of Americans died prematurely last year as a direct result of power plant emissions. More and more children are developing asthma and more and more of them are developing a more severe case of asthma (and don’t tell me it’s just because they’re not active because I played 3 sports – soccer, baseball, and basketball – when I grew up and still developed asthma). I’ve lived in the mountians, in the city, and near several chemical plants. There is a difference. It matters. We need solutions. I used to work in the chemical industry, so I’m definitly not advocating doing away with the industry or regulating it to death. But contrary to what big business will tell you, the regulations on most chemical plants is pretty lax. Never mind power plants (which have even less regulation).

    Both indoor and outdoor air pollution are about health. I think that if environmentalists started selling this sort of thing as less about protecting the environment as it is about protecting your kids and got some people to scream ‘won’t someone please think about the children’, things would go a lot faster.

  4. The particulate matter found in second hand smoke is amazingly harmful. Ear infections and the subsequent need for tubes are directly related to smoking. Asthma attacks, colds and other upper respiratory diseases causing loss of school days, extra trips to the doctor are all directly related to second hand smoke.
    Radon, plutonium, carbon monoxide are all released into the air. What more do these legislators need to know about second hand smoke?

  5. “This has nothing to do with clean air.”

    Could it have something to do with campaign contributions to Sen. Hawkins?

    In the 2007 election cycle:

    Altria – $1,000
    R. J. Reynolds – $500

    In the 2003 election cycle:

    Altria – $2,250
    U. S. Tobacco – $500

  6. It has nothing to do with campaign contributions. Hawkins’ district is smack dab in the middle of the state’s flue-cured tobacco growing region. Charlie is standing up for leaf growers.

  7. I see that in my first response, I intially mis-contextualized (god I love making up words) the quote. I think what’s brought up in the quote is discussion worth having. I am able to see both sides of the issue (having dealt with asthma triggered by cigarette and cigar smoke and having unfortunatly, for me, become a light smoker, especially when drinking).

    Having seen a brief synopsis of the bill in question (which means that I could be totally off base with this), I think that there are points that are no brainers: banks, hotels lobbies, places where children could be, etc (though I thought it was already illegal in VA to smoke while in line, which would probably cover most of these). But I think when it comes to other places such as bars, this is an issue that should be covered at the local level as it has been done in NYC, Maryland, etc. The community standards when it comes to cigarette smoke in these places is varied. Inside the beltway and in Richmond, a ban would be seen in a slightly positive light (from what I gather by my experiences living in both places). But in other places, especially rural and college area, a ban could be seen very negatively (especially by the tobacco farmers and companies and college students).

    I really don’t think that something like a ban on smoking in public places (which is basically what this amounts to) is workable at a state level. I do think that either way more has to be done for ventilation in places that allow indoor smoking (believe it or not, second hand smoke bugs the hell out of a lot of smokers too because its unfiltered). I also think there are more important battle to be undertaken in Richmond than a state-wide ban on smoking in bars and resturants. Lets work on things like that whole dependence on fossil fuels thing first, then we can solve the rest of the world’s ills.

  8. I’m really pleased to have posted such a brief quote and returned home, after a very long internet-less day on the road, to find such an interesting and educational discussion.

  9. I’m all for no smoking in bars and resturants. If that’s what this bill accomplishes- great!

    I had lunch in the no smoking section of a resturant today. But the booth on the other side of the partition was in the smoking section. So I might as well have been in the smoking section.

    Additionally if this bill fails. Then I think we should all make a point to start smoking in the non-traditional places like the grocery store, the library, etc. I mean what really makes one place more protected than another?

    Bottom line where people do and do not normally smoke is defined by social convention, and that can and should be changed.

  10. TrvlnMn, that is an amazingly good idea, just picture how a mother with her little girl would react to someone smoking in the grocery store. Cigarette Smoke Kills, and if you want to die, Smoke; but dont drag me down with you.

  11. I can understand no smoking in grocery stores, banks, etc. These are places where everyone must go. We already have those laws in place. Smokers abide by them.

    Why can’t other businesses decide if they want to allow smokers? Why does the government need to get involved? If you don’t want to be around smokers, don’t go to places where they allow smoking. If you don’t want smokers in your place of business, put up a no-smoking sign. There are plenty of places that don’t allow smoking.

    I’m sorry folks, smoking is LEGAL. Stupid people are legal but we don’t ban them from public places. Yes, they are dangerous. Don’t even try it. They’re going to make me have a heart attack!

    I don’t like stinky bathrooms. Someone could pass out in there! You want outside toilets? Where do you think it stops?

  12. Amen to Lucy Jones. I absolutely abhor smoking. I have never smoked or drank or done drugs in my life and I plan on never doing any of them. However, I’m not sure that it is the government’s place to decide. Let the free-market work it out. Smoke-free facilities will be patronized much more by people like me. If the market for non-smoking restaurants is underserved, I can start a smoke-free restaurant and make millions. It’s called voting with your wallet. It’s a much better way of doing things.

    I wouldn’t even go so far as to ban smoking in bank and grocery stores. That’s really an arbitrary distinction that serves no-one. Any grocery store that would be so stupid as to allow smoking would instantly lose 100% of my business and many others I suspect.

    I’d like to repeat my question to Waldo which remains to be answered: Please provide further context to the Senator’s remark.

  13. Hans, your question was immediately answered by the subsequent commenter. I’m not sure what I can describe about the bill that hasn’t been discussed here, within the bill summary, or in the news.

  14. Waldo, I knew what bill he was talking about and what that bill did; what I was asking for is what else he said around that. What were the gist of his remarks on either side of that little out of context snippet?

  15. I happened to be in Rhode Island during their debate over cigarette smoking in bars, and the subsequent weirdness when my particular bar smelled a little bit cleaner each time I went in.

    Initially, I was opposed to the bill, because, hell, it’s a bar, right? When I go to a bar, where cigarette smoking is almost expected, I willingly assume a risk by exposing myself to second-hand smoke.

    But, Providence has some very economically depressed areas, including around the Providence College campus. Jobs are hard to come by (especially with competition for some of those jobs college students) in some Providence neighborhoods. So, some people are, by necessity, forced to work in bars, because this may be the only job available. So, it was people in this situation, that were exposed to second-hand smoke for long periods of time day after day, that led me to change my mind.

  16. I think in some areas a ban on bars makes sense, as has been mentioned. But I think a statewide ban is too encompassing. Instead, they should change current VA law to allow localities to ban it on their own. Let localities and businesses decide how they want to handle it. It’s not a ‘marketplace’ decision, it’s just a personal preference.

    And I think if there is a ‘smoking’ and ‘nonsmoking’ section, they need to be divided by a solid wall. There is nothing worse than sitting in the nonsmoking section, breathing in second hand smoke. Put a full wall (none of that half wall crap) between them, with a door. Add ventilation. Make the nonsmoking section the no-smoke section.

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