Vice Squad
Saturday, June 19, 2004
Massachusetts Goes the Workplace-Smoking-Ban Route...

...and yes, bars and restaurants are included. "Massachusetts becomes the sixth state to have a workplace smoking ban, joining New York, California, Connecticut, Maine and Delaware."

I favor some smoking regulations -- and probably even mandated non-smoking areas in restaurants -- but not these complete bans. As for the rhetoric used by some people in support of these bans -- well, if patriotism hadn't already occupied the spot, these tropes (kids, rights) might qualify as the last refuge for scoundrels:
"Today, we can all breathe a little easier," Gov. Romney said. "Everyone has the right to breathe clean air and be free of secondhand smoke, especially our kids."
Actually, not quite today. The ban goes into effect on July 5. Until then, Massachusetts's smokers enjoy the "right" to poison our children.


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