Letters to the Editor

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SMOKING: Snuff out cigar lounge exception

Letter by Heidi Henson, Gig Harbor on Feb. 22, 2011 at 2:17 pm with 7 Comments »
February 22, 2011 2:49 pm

Re: “Cigar exception would allow bars, tobacconists to smoke indoors” (TNT, 2-18).

The people of Washington state already settled this matter. They voted for smoke-free work environments for all. These bills are a transparent attempt to circumvent the law to benefit those who don’t care that secondhand smoke is killing people; recent statistics say around 50,000 people annually. This is in addition to the 440,000 people who die every year a preventable death from using tobacco.

It also puts people who are looking for work in a precarious position of giving up their ability to work in a clean air environment to pay the bills.

Exposure to tobacco is a surefire way to get sick, become poor and die an agonizing death. These bills need to be eliminated from consideration as they are not in the best interest of public health and the state’s health care costs.

The more people get sick from tobacco, the more our deficit will grow. With rising health care costs and increasing numbers of people underinsured or uninsured, every time someone can’t pay for their health care, we all foot the bill.

To voice your opinion, call the legislative hotline at 1-800-562-6000.

(Henson is co-chair of the Tobacco-Free Alliance of Pierce County.)

Leave a comment Comments → 7
  1. APimpNamedSlickback says:

    “These bill need to be eliminated from consideration”???

    Of course, that’s the answer. There’s a law that’s negatively affecting a particular group in society, but the rest of society disagrees with that group, so we shouldn’t even debate the issue. They’re in the minority, so they’re opinion doesn’t matter, eh?

    Tell me something: If the voters decided that all private medical clinics should be required to provide free medical care to all, various doctors’ groups would inevitably suggest a bill that would change that law. But because the suggested law ran contrary to what the masses felt, and because it would eventually result in some people not getting medical care, thus harming the interests of public health, should those bills be removed from consideration?

  2. I doubt that smokers qualify for minority status, APimpNamedSlickback. Someday, hopefully, no one will be addicted to tobacco.

  3. live4fish says:

    “It also puts people who are looking for work in a precarious position of giving up their ability to work in a clean air environment to pay the bills.”

    Considering you have to be a part OWNER of the lounge to WORK in the lounge, i’m sure that your precarious position doesn’t matter. Why do people always say that it’s a danger to work there that nobody should have to endure? In order to work in the lounge, you must be part owner of the lounge.

  4. APimpNamedSlickback says:


    Are you saying that smokers make up 50%+1 of the population? I admit, I don’t have the statistics, but I highly doubt that’s the case. The last study I read said it was something like 20% of the population smokes. So if you go by that number, then yes, smokers are a minority. They may not be a legally protected minority, but that wasn’t what I was suggesting.

    I was asking the letter writer if she felt that the concerns of a minority segment of the population (that is, a group of people numbering fewer than the majority) should be ingored, or as she implied, preempted from consideration simply because they are the concerns of the minority.

    I gave the example that I did because there’s any number of things that can get on a ballot which voters will approve, even when they don’t necessarily have the legal right to do so. Just because a majority of the people who turn out for an election think something should be a certain way, doesn’t mean it should, or that they can have it that way. We don’t live in a democracy, we live in a republic, and for good reason. If this were a democracy, the minority would be subject to the tyranny of the majority.

  5. Show me where it states that “In order to work in the lounge, you must be part owner of the lounge,” live4fish.

  6. surething says:

    Good Lord, people can make their own choices. If you don’t want to patronize or work in that type of environment, then don’t.

  7. The people made their choice, surething.

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