Tom Joad's Place

Welcome to Tom Joad's Place! Join me for political discussion and banter on important national subjects and VA politics. I've also noticed that there are a lot of people looking for information on "Grapes of Wrath". Look for the sidebar and we'll discuss. Contact Kevin, at

Location: Fairfax, Virginia, United States

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

"Outa my way...I'm Hitler!"

Yes, the title of my post is one of my favorite "Simpsons" lines. It's also a way to reveal my true feelings on this smoking ban in question because I want to move the Commonwealth of Virginia to a state of fascism. First they came for the smokers? (Hint: This is sarcasm.)

Having read arguments over the past few days against non-smoking venues, I've decided to go point by point.

1. "Businesses will go under." There of course is no evidence of this in the states and localities that have enacted the non-smoking ban. But that won't stop people from using it as "evidence".

There is evidence that supports that business will go on as usual. Also here, here, here, and here.

2. "Businesses have spent money on ventilation systems." Good for them...why not give them a tax credit for their troubles.

3. "Second hand smoke doesn't bother anyone." Here are a couple of examples on the effects of second hand smoke:

"Secondhand smoke causes approximately 3,400 lung cancer deaths and 22,700-69,600 heart disease deaths in adult nonsmokers in the United States each year.

A study found that nonsmokers exposed to environmental smoke were 25 percent more likely to have coronary heart diseases compared to nonsmokers not exposed to smoke.

The current Surgeon General's Report concluded that scientific evidence indicates that there is no risk-free level of exposure to second hand smoke. Short exposures to second hand smoke can cause blood platelets to become stickier, damage the lining of blood vessels, decrease coronary flow velocity reserves, and reduce heart rate variability, potentially increasing the risk of heart attack."

I could go on with the quotes from the federal government but it would be overkill.

We regulate behavior all the time in this society. We tell businesses to make sure that they have proper sanitation. We tell car manufacturers to have certain emission standards. Other local governments are working to get restaurants to stop using trans fats in their cooking oil. Why can't we have a place where people can do what is necessary such as breathe?

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