The two examples provided by Harsha Panduranga in his column against the smoking ban don’t serve as exact analogies to the circumstances behind the move toward the smoking ban (Keep smoking on campus, 09/10/2009).
The ban serves to prevent smoking in public places, where people who choose not to smoke may be exposed to secondhand smoke. It doesn’t ban smoking in all places, nor does it take away the right of smokers to chain smoke in the privacy of their homes.
In regards to Pandaranga’s arguments, an obese person eating cake doesn’t adversely affect his neighbor’s health. And talking loudly on a cell phone doesn’t pose a health hazard to the public.
The University’s general smoking ban is good for the public health. Smokers should be given designated smoking areas where they can smoke away from home. An example would be smoking rooms with independent air systems, like those found in Japan.
Engineering Graduate Student