Sunday, June 12, 2011

New York City Bans Smoking in Public Parks

A smoking ban in New York City’s public parks and beaches went into effect on May 23.

The ban makes good sense if the idea is that non-smokers should never have to smell even a whiff of smoke, or if the goal is to get smokers to quit. But too often, the proponents of such bans try to convince the public that even the occasional smell of smoke in an outdoor setting is enough to cause cancer or disease in the non-smoker. People, the data just aren't there to support such a claim! I'll be happy to change my tune when I see the evidence.

There’s plenty of evidence that smokers have a higher risk of cancer and other disease. Surely we'd get farther if we were just brutally honest with smokers, as in, "Cigarettes will kill you!"

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