I have a bit of a rant on my mind today. I am so incredibly tired of the fact that every time I enter or leave a building I am pummeled by cigarette smoke. Let me first clarify that I am not suggesting that individuals who smoke should not be allowed to do so. Really, I’m not. If a person wishes to engage in smoking, so be it. I would certainly not encourage an individual to *start* smoking, but I am also the last person who will insist that another individual *stop* smoking. I feel that it is not my business to screen another person's habits.
That being said, I cannot stand the fact if I want to take a lunchtime stroll around campus to enjoy the beautiful weather, I must endure quite a few lungfuls of smoke on the journey. I also work near a hospital and people lean on the “no smoking” signs at the doors while they puff away. It’s a hospital for crying out loud. Give the sick people a break already.
Those who wish to play devil’s advocate to my complaint may point out that my waistline is indicative of the fact that my life habits are not exactly the healthiest. Perhaps even going so far as to tell me that the slice of pie I ate the other day was not the best choice. True- I will agree. But I also do not walk up to random individuals on the street and shove a pat of butter into their mouth. I choose to sometimes eat an unhealthy food. But I do not force another individual to join me.
I have friends who smoke. And every one of them will attest to the fact that I have never once told them to stop. But they all stay downwind or simply walk away when they wish to light up. No one makes a big deal of it. Each one respects the needs of the other.
I have no idea how to solve the dilemma. Smokers have already been banned from most office buildings and public places. Many regions do not allow smoking in bars and restaurants. So where else is a smoker to go than outside into the great wide open? I get it. The “allowed” places are limited. But I avoid the bars and clubs that are smoky. I sit in the non-smoking section at restaurants. I do what I can to avoid situations that I know will be smoky. But I can’t avoid walking outside. It seems that there is no good way for everyone to get what they want.