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elephant

the smoking ban, political curses

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer has a story today about the proposed state-wide indoor workplace smoking ban [#] that's on the ballot this November in Washington. I'm encouraged to see that their polling suggests that the measure will pass, given that the main opposition points are "It doesn't apply to casinos on Native American reservations!" and "the cops could use it to harass bars they don't like" because of its 25-foot rule (which, I admit, seems unnecessarily prohibitive).

This is a cause that I really would have liked to been involved with, but I've resisted any sort of impulses to volunteer to help. I made this decision to be unengaged mostly because almost every political campaign that I've been a part of has ended in defeat and I'd really like to see Washington bars be smoke-free.

Comments

Wait. So, you're avoiding involvement because you don't want to *curse* the campaign?

Listen, I've got a local parking maid movement I think you should look into...
exactly.

Of course, I accept that it's possible that factors other than my involvement may have been responsible for the failure of the other political activities. This seems like a good experiment, though. I'm not even sure if I signed a 901 petition.
for the most part, this post is an excuse for why I haven't added "Ban smoking in restaurants and bars in Washington State" [43things] to my list of "things".
Well, whenever I make a statement that indoor smoking ought to be banned in my Livejournal or in person or whatever... I get totally flamed or told that I am wrong. Blah.
they're wrong, you're right. smoking should be banned!

(but it might make everyone fat if they quit [slate]_!)
Smoking should definitely be banned in restaurants and bars. It's sick to have your clothes smell so bad. But I agree--the 25 foot rule is excessive. Because where are people supposed to smoke? In front of other businesses?
Oops -- it looks like I forgot to put the URL for the story in my post.

Anyway, the thing about the 25-foot rule is that the initiative includes an option to have it reconfigured based on special needs:
the measure exempts passers-by and allows businesses to negotiate narrower buffer zones with local health officials, who would be partially responsible for enforcing the ban. [p-i]

The Stranger is very angry about this provision because it leaves enforcement to the discretion of the police. They claim that the police will use this to harrass bars that they don't like. Which, I agree, is not a good thing. But that's a problem with the police force and not the smoking ban.

Many backers of 901 suggest that the legislature can easily modify the 25-foot provision, too. Usually I'm skeptical of law by initiative, but I'd rather see this flawed law pass than have smoking in bars.
..the 25 ft thing..people don't follow non-smoking rules now, i don't think they'll follow it even if it becomes law. there's a sign infront of campus at sccc that you can't smoke i think 25 or 50 ft from campus but people light up as soon as they step out. there will have to be a lot of harsh enforcing..

you'd do it to me...

"its 25-foot rule"

btw, thanks for not jinxing us!

Re: you'd do it to me...

thanks (I fixed it)

&

you're welcome (/good luck!)

Re: you'd do it to me...

any time