Today I received a flyer in the mail urging South Dakotans to Vote NO on Referred Law 12, an expanded smoking ban. The argument is that Smoking is Freedom. The flyer made the ridiculous accusation that voting against smoking is voting for a State Income tax. Trying to claim some relationship between smoking bans and state income tax – ridiculous. - total FUD…(Fear Uncertainty Doubt)… fear mongering. That’s what it’s reduced too.
It is undisputed fact that smoking kills people through both direct and indirect exposure. Period. End of argument.
If you disbelieve this fact, you lack the mental facility to comprehend the world around you and my essay is not indented for you.
Let me address the first point.. “It’s about FREEDOM”…
Are you “FREE” to drive 100 miles per hour through a down town street?
Are paint companies “FREE” to use lead in their products?
Are builders “FREE” to cover ductwork with asbestos?
Are beauty supply companies “FREE” to use mercury in their products?
Are building codes “FREE” from the burden of requiring expensive fire escapes on high rises?
Those are rhetorical questions to which the obvious answer is no. You are NOT free to conduct any behavior harmful to others. That’s freedom – freedom from oppression. Others are NOT free to oppress non-smokers with their toxic habits.
Now, the second point – Smoking bans lead to income tax. Come on now, what happened to common sense? There is zero relationship between the two. There is a proven relationship however between cigarette smoke and cancer!
Laws are to protect citizens. Cigarette smoke harms and kills. It’s time for laws to reflect this reality and protect citizens.