Smoking Bans in Restaurants

Topics: Smoking, Passive smoking, Smoking ban Pages: 5 (1884 words) Published: April 11, 2006
Restaurant goers make decisions that effect their overall satisfaction in an establishment every time they go out. They have to decide if they want their steak cooked medium-well or rare, if they want a Budweiser or a Bud-light, and if they want to start a tab or pay in cash. So what do all these decisions have in common? They have the freedom to choose what they want. So, why is it that we don't have a choice when the decision is whether or not we can smoke in public? You may think this seems like a complaint on the behalf of customers who smokes. But, in fact, it is the complaint of a non-smoker. Non-smokers have no choice in whether they are surrounded by people who smoke or not when they are at a bar or restaurant. Other customers, who don't smoke, really can't decide for the guy smoking next to them as to whether or not he will light one up. Without smoking bans in every bar and restaurant, non-smokers don't have any freedom of choice whatsoever. Big Tobacco companies say that enforcing an absolute smoking ban in the hospitality industry will spoil food sales in restaurants and drain alcohol sales in Bars. In this paper, I will show how smoking bans do not affect the hospitality industry at all and, in fact, the only business that would suffer is the tobacco industry. There is nothing worse then having your personal freedom of choice be taken away from you, that is to say, when you come home from a bar and your clothes smell like a dirty ash tray because they have been doused with the stench of smoke all in part by the friendly smoker. A lot of you are asking "Why do I have to I have to put of with this?" Most non-smokers are not the type that really get in your face and or tell you to go outside to smoke because there are so many people that smoke in bars compared to people who don't. An estimated 1.28 billion people smoke world wide, which is about a third of the total global population. (World Health Organization) Hypothetically though, let's say that that the one third of the population who smoke are so addicted that they would actually choose not to go to a restaurant where there is a smoking ban and they can not smoke. For every one smoker that a business might lose then, they stand to gain two nonsmokers in return. So there is no logic in saying that businesses are going to be hurt by a smoking ban. Most of the false claims about the hospitality industry being hurt by smoking bans are concocted by tobacco companies. (Druce 7) Contrary to what tobacco proponent's claim, smoke free ordinances and state laws have been implemented without a loss in sales for restaurants and bars. (Mykeitun 71) One restaurant owner stated "Smokers do not quit eating at their favorite restaurant, they quite smoking at it!" (Bill 14) So how come it is not even a consideration for a total smoking ban in America right now? A smoker can still go to the same bar and restaurant and choose to smoke, but rather go outside instead of inside where it will be an effect on the surrounding customers evening. It seems that business owners would be in favor of this ban by now, but they're not. Besides the obvious reason for not wanting to smell like smoke at a bar, there are also unsettling health issues that are involved with second-hand smoke that people inhale. Restaurant environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) is about 35 times higher in a bar or restaurant than a typical work place exposure due to the concentration of smoke from workers and patrons. (World Health Organization) Also, restaurant air contains six times the carbon monoxide that you would inhale standing in the middle of a California freeway. Bar owners who have multiple layers of ETS should also be concerned because these are "class action law suits" waiting to happen. These statistics make you wonder if business owners are more concerned about their sales or the health of their customers. Let's say that a customer repeatedly has gotten sick from food poisoning at a restaurant, do...
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