According to a survey by Freedom 2 Choose, teengers think landlords should have the choice of whether an establishment permits smoking or not. The Morning Advertiser reports:
Members and supporters surveyed 1,312 under-25s in five different areas of England and found 99.7% think pubs and clubs should have the choice about whether people can smoke inside.
And 98.4% think pubs and clubs should be allowed separate smoking rooms.
Just 1.8% said the smoking ban deterred them from smoking, although 85% said it had affected their social habits.
Meanwhile, 85.2% agreed that second hand smoke does not pose a health threat.
What’s most interesting about this is that it’s young people, i.e. the generation brought up hearing the scare stories of smoking and passive smoking, the generation that has been PC’d, the generation that has always been accustomed to anti-smoking reports and legislation. So despite a lifetime of anti-smoking propaganda, the vast majority believe passive smoking doesn’t pose a threat to health and believe smokers should be allowed to enjoy their legal habit under a roof. Perhaps all is not lost.
This begs the question that if the public is not in favour of a ban, why do we, a supposedly democratic society, have one? How can we, in this age of technological advance and proposed tolerance to others, not allow separate smoking rooms or proven ventilation to combat the annoyance of smoke?
Older generations were never in favour of the ban, either. In fact, they were predominantly the ones smoking in venues like pubs or bingo halls, had grown up in smoky environments and smoked most of their lives. I’d bet any money that a similar poll of adults and the elderly would find similar results, because people are generally tolerant and smart enough to realise that they’re not going to get struck down with cancer by a night in a smoky pub. Not until we’re given a single name of a person who died from secondhand smoke exposure.
The public have spoken. We don’t want a draconian ban, and we don’t want our liberties removed.