Citizens and public health advocates want to impose new, airtight smoking restrictions at doorways, restaurant patios and open park space, bolstered by studies showing remarkable heart attack reductions in cities with strict laws. They face increasing resistance from businesses and smoking-rights supporters who say freedom has already eroded too far. “The anti-smoking people will not be satisfied until no one smokes,” said Pete Meersman of the Colorado Restaurant Association, who lobbies against more restrictions.
And their unapologetic response is: Get over it. The laws save more and more lives. Might as well quit now.
Other states and local communities, they add, are getting even tougher, including California laws that protect apartment dwellers from the smoker next door, and kids riding in their smoking parents’ cars.
“We should be as aggressive as possible in reducing smoking best quality OK cigarette, quite honestly in as many ways as we can,” said John Hokanson, a public health researcher at the Colorado School of Public Health at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus.
“There is still more to be done because secondhand smoke is dangerous. There is so much data,” said Jenny Merriman, a former public health nurse in Lakewood who is in a group advising the city to further shrink smoking areas. “All we can do is keep plugging away.”