Smoking Ban Round-Up

24 09 2008

I had planned on doing this last night, but most of the media in Lansing haven’t figured out the 24/7 news cycle.  I and the rest of the people in this City are still relegated getting news at 6, 10, and 11 PM then waiting for yesterday’s news to come in the form of a dead tree when we get.  Don’t get me wrong, WLAJ and WILX both had stories up last night, but I was hoping for a little more coverage with reaction from both sides.  The only place I could get that was MIRS which I’m not going to quote or link to since it’s a paid service.

The newspaper of record, The Lansing-State Journal, which is based in the state capital, doesn’t even cover the State Capitol.  The only article I could find on-line, and I had to do a keyword search to find it, was an AP article.  I’ve never lived in a town with a newspaper this bad.  It’s actually quite sad. 

Here’s what I found from two of the TV outlets and Detroit newspapers.

WLAJ

The Democrat-led House previously has supported legislation that carves out exemptions to the smoking ban for casinos and smoke shops. The Republican-led Senate has passed legislation to ban smoking at all workplaces.

House leaders tell ABC 3 they hope to vote again on the bill this week, or at least by the end of the session.

My take:  Good!  Don’t let this die.  I still can’t believe they brought it up yesterday, but let’s get this thing passed.  Give the 11 cowards who didn’t vote a second chance.

WILX

“The smoking ban failed because it was overreaching,” Rep. Craig DeRoche said. “It essentially banned smoking in all bars and smoking clubs. I think a lot of representatives pulled back from supporting that.”

The owner of the Downtown Smoking Club tells us the only way he can survive is if the law had exemptions in it for smoking clubs, but bartenders said they’re still hoping lawmakers will nix the ban altogether.

“We’re one of the places that does have smoking, and people come here for that,” Nate Watanabe said.

Watanabe is the managerof Brannigan Brothers downtown. He said smokers bring business, which is why they’re thinking of adding cigars to their bar and restaurant.

My take:  It’s not overreaching.  This MYTH that you have to have smoking to have drinking is totally bogus and has never been backed up in ANY research.  The vice is alcohol.  Not smoking.  You don’t go to a bar to smoke.  You go to a bar to drink.  How many people do you see standing at the bar smoking without a drink?  None!  It’s a total bull___ _ argument and I’m tired of reading hearing that over and over.  You WILL survive without smoking.  Not one bar in Peoria, IL where I lived last has shut down due to a statewide smoking ban.  NOT ONE!  In fact, many bar owners will say their business has increased…especially those that serve food.

Detroit Free Press

But Rep. George Cushingberry, D-Detroit, said extending the ban to the Detroit casinos could lead to a steep decline in revenues, jobs and tax receipts, affecting police and fire protection and state aid to public schools.

My take: Oh, come on….really?  That’s how you’re going to sell this.  Smoke or you lose your fire protection?  That sounds like a bad commercial from the 50’s.

Detroit News

Added Rep. Rick Jones, R-Grand Ledge: “I believe this is probably one of the most un-American pieces of legislation I have ever seen. The legislation has good intent but it goes too far.”

My take:  Un-American?  It is Un-American to think about other people when you’re doing something?  Un-American?  I don’t want to get into a rant, so I’m just going to leave it at that.

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