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Friendly Cigar Smokers of NYC Message Board › Too Much of a Good Thing!

Too Much of a Good Thing!

Bob D.
user 11987531
Group Organizer
New York, NY
Post #: 3

Too Much of a Good Thing
New York Times

When Mayor Michael Bloomberg began his campaign against
cigarette smoking eight years ago, most New Yorkers breathed a
sigh of relief. The great indoors — bars, restaurants, hotels,
office buildings — all are now smoke-free by law, making New
York City a healthier place. And, for those already addicted or
tempted, the city offered kits to help people stop smoking and
gruesome television ads to try to keep them from starting.

That antismoking campaign has been a great public service, but
now the mayor and City Council have overreached. The council
voted — 36 to 12 — to ban smoking outdoors in city parks,
beaches and even plazas, including in Times Square.

No smoking at the crossroads of the world? The vortex of
tourism that brings smokers and nonsmokers in great numbers?
The site of the world's most famous New Year's Eve party, where
who knows what goes on? All of this takes the mayor's nannying
too far, even for those of us who want to avoid the hazards of
secondhand smoke.

Already smokers are forced to huddle outside, these days
perched on the city's gray, leftover snowdrifts. Starting in
early summer, after the mayor signs the bill into law, they
will not be able to stray onto the 14 miles of city beaches or
into the city's 1,700 parks, not even Central Park or windswept
Battery Park. Instead of smoking on Brighton Beach, what does a
smoker do — take a boat out 12 nautical miles into
international waters?

Some City Council members wanted to find a less-drastic
solution — like having the ban but establishing smoking areas
on the beach or patches of the park. It's not great, but it's
better than an all-out ban. Also, the city would have to
provide a lot more receptacles for cigarette butts and enforce
anti-littering laws in those areas.

Meanwhile, there is talk that the mayor and the City Council
want even more, like banning smoking near doors of office
buildings and apartments. They need to take a deep breath and
remember that we tried prohibition 90 years ago. They called it
a noble experiment. It turned into a civic disaster.

Submitted from member Lenny Waller

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