Press Release – Make MI Air Smoke Free

28 07 2008

The group pushing for a smoking ban in Michigan is using a study from Illinois to further their cause.  Full disclosure, I was in favor of a smoking ban in Illinois the entire time they were debating it in the legislature.  I’ve also been back home a few times since the ban went into effect and I can tell you, not everyone is following it.  There is still a minority that refuse to follow the ban and here’s the kicker, there’s nothing that can be done to them.  The rules are still in JCAR and because of that, State’s Attorney’s don’t know how to prosecute or even what charge can be filed.  Even with that, the majority of places are following the law and no longer allow smoking.  My mom works at a small bar in the middle of the country on weekends as a waitress.  While the kitchen is open, the building is no smoking.  Once the kitchen closes and the dinner crowd clears out, the smokes come back out.  Anyway, here’s the info the Campaign for Smokefree Air wants you to know.

Illinois Survey Finds Even Stronger Support for Smokefree Air Law After it Takes Effect

Michigan’s Comprehensive Smokefree Air Legislation Held Captive in House

LANSING, MICH. – People in Illinois are even more supportive of a smokefree air law that went into effect at the beginning of this year than they were before it was approved.

According to a recent survey, 73 percent of people support the new smokefree air law; survey results showed a majority in every sector regardless of political, geographic and educational backgrounds.

“Speaker Andy Dillon has not allowed a concurrence vote on House Bill 4163 for some apparent fear of economic, political or social repercussion,” said Judy Stewart, spokesperson for the Campaign for Smokefree Air. “This survey is yet another example of the numerous positive effects and vast public support of smokefree air in all worksites, including bars, restaurants and casinos.”

House Bill 4163, Michigan’s proposed comprehensive smokefree legislation, was approved by the Senate in May and has been sitting in the House awaiting action ever since because Speaker Dillon refuses to hold a vote.

The Illinois survey also found that 38-percent of respondents are less likely to go to a smoke-filled casino, while only 17 percent are more likely to go to casinos if smoking is allowed.

Furthermore, 96 percent of respondents believe secondhand smoke is a health hazard. In addition, it was reported that 88 percent of all respondents and 68 percent of smokers believe restaurants, bars and casinos are healthier places for customers and employees under Illinois’ law.

“The people of Illinois supported the smokefree law and now, after living with it for six months, they support it even more,” Stewart said. “The people of Michigan support making all worksites in our state smokefree, including bars, restaurants and casinos. Sitting on the bill rather than allowing it to come up for a vote isn’t just about playing politics – it’s about playing with people’s lives.”

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Campfire Cooking

28 07 2008

The Lansing State-Journal has an article on their website this mornng about campfire cooking.  Man, does that bring back memories.  My friends and I used to “camp” every weekend.  Campfire cooked food was what I always looked forward to.  The LSJ doesn’t offer a whole lot of insight in exactly how to cook over a campfire other than to throw a commecial in there for a tuscan grill maker. 

The most important thing, make sure you’re burning a hardwood.  Softwoods not only taste bad, but they can be hazardous.  Just like on the grill, I prefer hickory.  Once you get a fire going, you have options.  Metal pokers aren’t really a good option.

Metal pokers might work for marshmallows, but are very limited when it comes to cooking a whole meal. But in a pinch, they’ll get your dogs hot enough for a bun and mustard.

You can do better than hot dogs.  The easiest way is to wrap your food in a piece of aluminum foil and throw it directly into the fire.  It will take quite a while to cook meat this way because you’re basically steaming.  This works good for vegetables.  Toss a little butter in the packet and you’ll have the best tasting veggies ever.  Be careful not to throw it directly into the fire.  Use some hot coals near the edge so it doesn’t burn. Read the rest of this entry »