Monday, March 29, 2004

For And Against The Total Smoking Ban

After considering smoking in buses, public offices and buildings in the Irish Republic illegal, Mr. Micheál Martin, Irish Health Minister, proposed a prohibition on smoking in work places, pubs, and restaurants in January 2004. After months of arguing, the Republic’s government has finally decided to apply this total ban starting from today, March 29th 2004, prohibiting smoking in ALL public places.
Of course this ban has divided people into two groups, one is for the ban believing that it guarantees a healthy environment for the non-smokers and helps the smokers lower their health risks caused by smoking. Whereas the other group is strongly against the ban. This last group is not limited to smokers only, but also pub owners, tobacco industry responsible and some “democratic” non-smokers who believe that such a total ban is unfair and takes away people’s rights of choosing and taking their own decisions, and that they’re more into keeping the division of public places into smoking and non-smoking areas.
Actually, I personally support the ban, because I believe it will really help non-smokers limit their smoking average, decrease their expenses as well as health problems, and prevent passive smoking dangers. I mean when a couple of people decide to go out, one is a smoker and the other is not, then they’ll most probably sit in the smoking area, opening the way to passive smoking. On the other hand, sometimes I feel the non-smoking areas could easily turn into a smoking area, because cigarettes spread their smoke so easily, specially that most of the non-smoking areas are not properly separated, they’re open to the smoking areas in most cases.
So I’m one of the people who are for the ban and respect the courage of the Irish government in this issue.
But that doesn’t mean that I don’t feel sorry for the smokers. It isn’t an easy step to take at all. In fact it might cause some chaos and higher anger-levels among the people in the first year of application, but well, it will be for their own good.
To feel what smokers would feel as the consequence of such a ban, and since I’m a non-smoker, I try to imagine how would it be like if for one reason or the other governments start banning drinking coffee in public! Lol, that would be a disaster, I’m literally a coffee addict, and I’ll be suffering if they threw such a ban! And it’s just coffee, I mean coffee addiction is not as hard as smoking addiction, or at least that’s what I think.
Anyway, I do admire such a brave step, and I do support the ban, I even wish they’d do the same in the Arab countries… oops, that would be one hell of a brave decision. And I wish smokers the best of luck and hope they’ll all quit smoking one day, specially my two brothers :)
What about you, are you for or against the ban? If you’re for it, go ahead and support it .
Well, speaking of coffee, I should do something about that, it’s not only that I drink more than 5 mugs of sugared coffee a day, no, I even went as far as getting the ones around me addicted.
And because of the strong smell of coffee all day long, my boss who never drank coffee got used to drinking at least a cup of coffee a day, bad bad me :P But well, my husband is trying to help set me free of this addiction, and decided to buy only decaffeinated coffee, which isn’t that bad actually, and I hope it’ll help me get over my coffee addiction :)