The implications of the Ohio smoking ban are more far reaching than simply preventing Citizens from inhaling second-hand smoke. The impact of the Ohio smoking ban affects businesses such as restaurants and bars, and other public venues intend to be destinations of enjoyment, not for some, but for all. Through legislation, the State of Ohio has relegated a portion of the population, and might I add a portion heavily taxed on tobacco usage, to become publicly admonished for a lifestyle choice.
Attempting to regulate Human Behavior via an Ohio smoking ban is foolish, both in terms of public safety concerns and the implementation of the regulations. Imagine a factory worker who can’t smoke at work, but can view their place of employment and find dozens of threats to personal health and safety, ignored by the State of Ohio. Sit in a bar or tavern in Ohio, and take a good, hard look at the other patrons. Not a single person’s health is being affected by tobacco smoke, thanks to the Ohio smoking ban, but every person in the room drinking alcohol is negatively impacting their health. This hypocritical and puritanical attitude is indicative of the convoluted logic of the Ohio smoking ban.
There is a need for Governmental oversight of public health, especially when applied to Children and Senior Citizens. However the Ohio smoking ban only represents a small fraction of the issues concerning rising health care costs absorbed by all. Everyone knows smoking is a detriment to good health and longevity, no argument there. What of the morbidly obese individual ingesting 3,000 calories and 250 grams of fat at a fast food restaurant on a daily basis? They adversely affect the health care premiums of every Citizen, but it’s impolite to tell them to quit power-feeding. Yet somehow, some political mastermind in Columbus, no doubt influenced by some special interest group, had the brilliant idea to make smokers stand outside in freezing temperatures. It is little wonder why Ohio still has the reputation as a rural, ass-back wards farm state.
The implications of the Ohio smoking ban has diverted precious manpower and resources away from much greater issues of importance – crime, drug and alcohol abuse, social services and education, to name a few. The mentality of prioritizing social concerns has been lost within the Ohio State Legislature, replaced by overbearing scrutiny on behalf of State Government. The only possible avenue of recourse being the removal of incumbents in the next election.