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Ol’ Dirty Weighs in on Smoking Ban

The ODE issued an editorial today criticizing plans to make campus smoke-free. However, it didn’t take an absolutist stance on the issue. Instead, the editorial suggests placing designated smoking areas on campus. From the article:

Further regulating the areas where people can smoke on campus would be a more reasonable, effective and generally welcomed change. People who smoke cigarettes right outside of campus buildings are a nuisance to non-smokers who must pass through the toxic cloud on their way to class, but they shouldn’t be forced from campus. Smoking is a vice and an addiction. This is common knowledge, and as a society we have chosen, as illustrated by our laws, to maintain cigarettes as a legal right to citizens who choose to consume them. If cigarettes are indeed banned on campus, smokers will simply go elsewhere when their nicotine cravings strike, or more likely will just flout the law and light up anyway. Nevertheless, they won’t stop smoking. University officials need to realize when their attempts to regulate student behavior will have palpable effects, and when they will fall on deaf ears.

Many of the other Commentators and I believe that a much better solution than both of these proposals would be to simply enforce the existing rules that ban smoking within a certain number of feet from a building entrance. The majority of complaints about smoking on campus are due to people smoking in front of doors. If the rules were actually enforced, I don’t think the smoking ban would have half the support it does.

  1. drew says:

    So pretty much from the above arguements i can only deduce that doing cocaine can reduce drinking

  2. Kai Davis says:

    “Breaking news from the Oregon Commentator / Weekly Enema Laboratories: Sex lowers intoxication!

    We would have written the rest of the article, but we’re too busy having preventing intoxication.

    Ha ha! Sex!”

  3. Chris Holman says:

    I think that the smoking lowers the level of intoxication because it keeps you busy…you don’t drink as much when you’re smoking. I think that’s what they mean. Of course, you could say that you don’t drink as much when you’re:

    – playing pool
    – talking incessantly
    – etc

    I’ll re-read though.

  4. Kai Davis says:

    @Chris: That is why I’m an economic major.

    hey shit happens
    hey look, there is this link between two things
    that doesn’t make sense!
    shut up, bitch, I used science.

    <3 economics.

    “Growing evidence from neurological research also suggests that smoking lessens a drinker

  5. Vincent says:

    Oh Zach, you lovable rogue, you.

  6. orwellduk says:

    Yeah, and I am glad you guys were able to come to terms with the fact that my Nike governance anti-smoking policy laundering conspiracy theory is the smoking gun here.

  7. Snowbird says:

    smoke from tobacco is a statistically insigificant health risk.

  8. Chris Holman says:

    I just thought it was a fun addition to the conversation.

    If you apply the same ideas to things like the U of O being a dry campus, I imagine one might stumble across the same results. Namely, if you force people to go far from home (on campus, in frats) to drink, they are going to drive drunk, bike drunk, and who knows what happens beyond that? : )

  9. CJ Ciaramella says:

    Yeah, but who could have seen THAT coming? I mean, it’s so totally illogical. If we ban smoking, then people obviously won’t smoke anymore.

  10. Chris Holman says:

    From the Atlantic Monthly, May 2008, page 20 (Primary Sources)

    “Drunk Driving After the Passage of Smoking Bans in Bars,” Scott Adams and Chad Cotti, Journal of Public Economics.

    Link to full study

    “Can smoking cigarettes actually save lives? When some state and local governments banned smoking in bars, the number of fatal car accidents involving drunk drivers rose by about 13 percent, two economists recently showed. In the most extreme result, they found that fatal accidents in Jefferson County, Colorado, increased by more than 40 percent after neighboring Boulder County instituted a ban. Although a portion of the smoking population simply stays at home to drink after bans are enacted, the researchers argue that many other smokers seek out bars in locales where simultaneously imbibing and inhaling remains legal. Given the greater distance to a bar in a neighboring county or state, the authors surmise that smokers in towns with bans log more drunk-miles, leading to more alcohol-related accidents. Growing evidence from neurological research also suggests that smoking lessens a drinker’s level of intoxication, and that nicotine deprivation can sharpen the urge to drink. As a result, the authors say, smokers who comply with the ban and elect to booze close to home may be drinking more, or getting more drunk from the same number of drinks. While a national smoking ban could offset some of the increase in fatalities, perhaps alcohol, like coffee, is simply best (and safest) when enjoyed with cigarettes.”

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