Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Smoking ban opponents and proponents present their views at KRCU-League of Women Voters debate

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KRCU) - There is only one thing about Cape Girardeau's proposed smoking band that is beyond debate: That it stirs strong emotions from each side.

KRCU and The League of Women Voters hosted an open debate on the proposed Cape Girardeau smoking ban ordinance Tuesday night.

Dale Humphries and Shelly Wood represented Citizen’s For A Smoke-Free Cape. Citing studies that show the dangers of second-hand smoke, they argues that this is not about a smoking ban. Rather, it is an issue of public health.

"Too often in the smoke-free debate it becomes about smoking versus non-smoking, when in reality the issue is public health, protecting citizens from a known hazard," Wood said.

Nancy Kennemore and Don Greenwood representing Stand Up Cape, What’s Next? feel this is about personal property rights and the rights of those who wish to engage in a legal activity.

"I’m not a smoker, I have never smoked cigarettes in my life, Greenwood said. "I don’t see this as a smoking issue at all, I see this strictly as a personal property issue. I think we’ve lost enough of our rights over the last few years because of government regulations and I think that is the main issue here."

Greenwood countered the issue of public health with a study by the US Department of Energy that found levels of secondhand smoke in restaurants caused little or no adverse health effects.

Matthew Caldwell, KRCU


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