Up In Smoke

The hazards of smoking are irrefutable. At some point in your life, you’ve been stuck walking behind a smoker and are forced to endure that horrible smell.  For the most part, people are aware of the toll smoking can take on your health (and wallet) yet they choose to do it anyways. After all, it is an addiction, right?

In less than thirty days, Morgantown will put a long awaited smoking ban into effect making the city a smoke free environment. The Monongalia County Board of Health will prohibit smoking in several public places including restaurants, businesses, bars, malls, and pretty much anywhere you can think of. The purpose of the ban is to ensure that the wishes of both smokers and non-smokers are met. This is a huge advantage for many students that want to go out and have a good time without having to breathe in second hand smoke. Other than laziness, there shouldn’t be any reason someone can’t step outside for a smoke break. It may seem like an inconvenience but that’s a mild request compared to the long-term effects their cancer stick may be having on everyone else. Imagine over the span of your life how much second hand smoke you’ve inhaled without ever smoking a cigarette. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, about 3,000 people die each year from second hand smoke. The public shouldn’t have to face preventable health risks.

Courtesy of Google Images.

Not to mention, a lot of people are careless and don’t pay attention to where their smoke is floating around or if it’s being blown in your face. Not to put a stereotype on smokers, but many of them flick their cigarette buds on the ground when there’s a cigarette container right next to them (my point proven). My friends and I like going downtown on the weekends, but after awhile the smoke starts to take away from the enjoyment. I start getting nauseous, my eyes begin to burn, and my hair and clothes smell like smoke when I get home (and those are just inconveniences). No matter where you are, your surroundings make a huge difference in whether your experience was pleasant or unpleasant. Local spots like the hookah lounge are places that smokers can go and socialize with other people who don’t want to go outside for a smoke break. Therefore, I think Morgantown officials are making a responsible decision by promoting healthier ways of life for the whole community.

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