Once in while there is a social issue that seems to affect a great number of people. The smoking ban legislation is one of those issues. When it comes time to debate, one side seldom listens to the other. And if they are talking, they are usually screening. But when people want to make a valid point, who they turn to? If someone wants to discuss the medical aspects of smoking, do they ask their doctor? No, they ask the editor. If people have a question on policy, do they ask their legislator? No, they ask the editor. If someone has a question about a civil liberty, do they ask a Supreme Court justice? No, they ask the editor.
Today I would like to discuss the few recent letters to editors at large, and we can see into the psyche of the writer. Our first letter comes from a writer, we'll call her "Jenny." Jenny writes that smoking is harmful. Well, this type of breaking news seldom makes it to the front page anymore. Yes, everyone knows smoking is harmful, but that does not stop people from continuing to smoke. Our next letter comes from the writer who we'll call "Elizabeth." Elizabeth writes-let the businesses decide whether they want to allow smoking or not. Well, if there is not a specific ban, that means it is allowed. The businesses have spoken. Our next letter comes from the writer we'll call "Jenny"-this is a different Jenny from our previous writer. She writes-banning smoking would not reduce a tavern's business. Well, if this were true, there would not be a debate on such a large-scale. Our next letter comes from a writer we'll call "Barb." Barb writes that Chicago's ban seems to work well for all the taverns. Well, it's a long drive to Chicago especially when you're driving back drunk. Our next letter comes from a writer we'll call "Keith." Keith writes that after a night in the bar he has a headache, stomachache, watery eyes and an empty wallet. Well, this does not sound like symptoms from secondhand smoke in as much as it does the brown bottle flu.These are a sampling of common topics written by the general public on the subject of secondhand smoke. As always, please direct your further rebuttals to the editor. Which editor you may ask? I don't know.