Sunday, February 19, 2006
....I'm sending this message to all Kansas representatives and senators whose email addresses I was able to find.
....Last night I had a very nice dinner at a local Chinese buffet. The one sour note in a pleasant evening was the foul stench of cigarette smoke drifting from the "smoking section". I put that term in quotes because, as in most restaurants in our state, the so-called smoking section is in the same room as the so-called nonsmoking section. Having a smoking section in a restaurant is like having a peeing section in a swimming pool.
....When will the Kansas legislature put a stop to this idiotic situation? The last time I looked into this subject, seven states had done away with smoking in enclosed public places. My question to you is: Will we be the eighth or ninth state to join the civilized world in passing such sensible legislation, or will we be forty-ninth or fiftieth?
....The inevitable red herring always dragged through the debate on this subject is "smokers' rights". I do not dispute for one moment anyone's right to kill himself, whether it's with a bullet to the head or with self-administered poison gas. What nobody has a right to do is to take innocent bystanders down with him, whether the weapon is flying lead or toxic fumes.
....Given the fact that many of the innocent bystanders currently under chemical assault have no choice in the matter unless they quit their jobs, and given the inevitable healthcare costs to the state and its taxpayers, it is in the state's interest to put an end to the present nonsense sooner rather than later.