Cigar Smokers Fight for the Right to Smoke in Public
Written by Kevin Godbee

Wednesday, 02 September 2009

User Rating: / 1

clubs and organizationssmoking bans
tobacco legislation

Instead of making strong statements about losing the freedom to smoke in a restaurant, perhaps now is the time to have a more conciliatory tone in what we say. Instead of anger at not being able to smoke in places that you were once allowed to smoke, perhaps we should admit in our submissions that not everyone likes the smell of cigar smoke and so it might be better that we don’t have the right to smoke in places where people eat, but surely there are public places where smoking a cigar will not be a problem for others.




Now you might think that all sounds a bit weak at a time when we need to be really strong but let’s face it - the anti-smoking lobby have the upper hand and the more we rant and rave about our rights the more likely it will be that our elected representatives are going to side with the anti-smoking lobby. Instead of getting what we want, if we come on too strong we’ll get smacked down even harder. Our elected representatives know that they’re unlikely to be voted out of office by angry cigar smokers and to side with us could be seen as an electoral disadvantage.

On the other hand, if we approach this with a little restraint our elected representatives may be far more inclined to support our right to be allowed to smoke in some public places for there are votes in being seen to be reasonable and supportive of everyone’s rights.

So you should certainly get out there and fight for the right to be able to enjoy a good cigar in a public place but at the same time don’t let the anger you may feel at the loss of your rights come through.

As well as writing to your elected representatives at all levels of government start talking to the press as well. You would be surprised at what can be achieved when people start engaging reporters and journalists even at a local level. Once again don’t go in swinging when you talk to these people because all you will be doing is feeding that negative image that we cigar smokers have.

Sure we’ve lost many of our rights but what we want to get across to the press is the fact that, just like every minority group in the country, we need to have some freedoms to do what we enjoy as long as we’re not creating problems for the rest of the community. If we take that reasonable approach with the press you may be surprised at how the impression you have left with the reporters may color what they say in their next story about the smoking issues.

So there are just two suggestions of how you can do something positive in the fight to be allowed to smoke in public places that we cigar smokers are engaged in. It’s a fight that every one of us has to get into because the fewer cigar smokers that express their desire to be allowed to smoke in public places the less inclined the politicians and the press will be to listen to anyone other than the anti-smoking lobby.

It’s a struggle for a freedom that none of us want to lose so it’s struggle that we all have to engage in.


0 # Reducing the Anger is GoodEric Bodenstab 2009-09-01 23:27
This is an excellent way to start. Now let me encourage the next step - offering an alternate solution.

How about legislation which lets the market decide. Give restaurant owners and managers the responsibility of deciding whether their restaurant allows smoking. Such an option allows local markets to determine what they want to have in their area.

But I agree with the point of the article. Getting angry won't help us keep our rights.

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0 # If only logic and common sense could prevailKevin Godbee 2009-09-02 23:20
Thanks for reading and commenting Eric.

I have written some pretty strong rants on this topic, which can be pretty easy to do because it has really become absurd. I must have taken my meds when I wrote this one. LOL! Joking.

I agree with you 100%. Your solution couldn't be more logical, reasonable and intelligent. As a matter of fact, personal freedoms are what this country was founded on, and free markets are what has grown it to be STILL the biggest, and strongest country in the world.

A business owner being able to decide if smoking will be allowed in his establishment, which he pays rent, taxes, etc. on is only about as logical as any of us being able to decide which color curtains we would like to hang in our living room.

A restaurant (or any business) should be able to decide if smoking will be allowed. Then they clearly communicate that fact and let people decide if they want to patronize the business or not. It's as easy as changing the channel on TV if you don't care for the program.

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0 # Free market = good stuffMr. Average 2009-10-16 03:08
I agree, it is a good thing to let the market decide. I think both smoking and non-smoking establishments would succeed equally well. Those who don't like to have second hand smoke would go to non-smoking establishments. People who do like to smoke will go to smoking establishments.

However, I have to admit that I'm not keen on smoking my cigars in smoke filled rooms as I don't like getting the aroma of Full bodied cigar if I'm in the mood for a mild, or vice versa. It's like someone holding a strawberry under your nose when tasting wine. Most of our ability to taste comes from our sense of smell. And if we're not tasting the cigar as it was designed, then people are basically tossing their money and should just smoke more affordable smokes in a smoke filled room.

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0 # Logic and ChoiceScott Spear 2009-10-16 22:01
I like my Cigars. A good cigar is relaxing and helps stimulate good conversation with friends.

That said I don't want the smell of cigar or cigarette smoke while I am eating. I want to enjoy the smell and taste of my food and I want my companions to have the same enjoyment.

I think from a free market standpoint that the smoking issue in any establishement should be left to the own. I certainly enjoy watching the game at my watering hole while smoking a fine cigar. We should assist business owners who want to establish a smoker friendly business and respect those who make a different business decision. But we should support the rights of the market business people to make their own decisions and keep the government out.

It would also help us to have a little education of the public. The most used reason for banning smoking is "second hand smoke kills". There is no scientific evidence to support this claim. When you are engaged in this type of conversation simply ask if the person you are talking if they can give you the name of anyone who has died because of second hand smoke. Don't be rude.

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0 # This isn't the time to go wobbly.LibertyToad 2009-10-17 01:54
Contact with our reps should be reasoned and polite, but forceful--this isn't the time to be weak. Being weak will not get us anywhere, but taking a reasoned stand will.

Your effort to preserve your rights should be directly proportional to the importance that right has for you.

We're not going to get anywhere buy giving in or playing their way....

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0 # ban it alreadyzach 2010-05-17 16:19
smoking is horrible and effects others around who have no choice. the end. case closed.

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0 # RE: Cigar Smokers Fight for the Right to Smoke in PublicPolitelyNotSmoking 2010-12-03 16:20
I don't have a problem with anyone smoking anything. The problems start when a non-naturally occurring action is initiated by an actor and the products of that action come in contact with a non-actor. (The smoker's smoke particle touches an unwilling recipient)

When the smoker projects smoke particles onto the unwilling reciipient, the smoker has violated the recipient's right not to smoke. I believe all can agree on that point.

So the solution is to not violate the rights of others. It's that simple. If you want to smoke, make sure you smoke all of your smoke. No one wants to limit your right to consume or be surrounded by smoke.

The subject of outdoor smoking arises naturally from this question. It's ok to smoke outdoors until any smoke you generate comes in contact with a person that doesn't want to smoke. Possibly smoke recycling helmets or establishments catering to smokers is the answer so that the smoker can get the maximum amount of smokey goodness.

This may be an enterprise opportunity to take advantage of. An attraction that keeps the indoor air pressure at less than ambient pressure and has the capability of scrubbing the smoke particles from the indoor air before exhausting it into ambient air.

All the best and no hard feelings to anyone that enjoys smoking. Just please respect the rights of those that do not wish to participate.

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