BZ's Hajo. You hit the nail right on the head. Americans "had" rights at one time and were willing to stand up for, and if necessary, fight for, those rights. I am not sure where or when that situation turned around but as it goes these days, the vast majority of the American population would rather "just let the government handle it," rather than actually take active roles in how anything works here in this country. This has been reflected in the voting which has allowed the government to literally take control of what used to be rights and freedoms here. Yes, part of the Michigan deal states that you aren't allowed to smoke within a certain distance of a public buildings areas where air can enter the building, therefore allowing your smoke to enter the building. Hmmm, that means that nowhere on the sidewalk is legal . . . perhaps standing directly in the middle of the street will place you outside of the illegal zone . . . Arrgghh . . . one could go on and on and on and on . . . and it will never change until the people as a whole are willing to take back control of the government rather than allow the government to have control over them . . . America is no different than any other country where the government reigns supreme over the people and regulates per agenda rather than the voice of the people as a whole. Just here in America different control methods are used, or rather, the methods are "masked" very well so that the average "joe" doesn't recognize what is going on, or perhaps, more realistically, the average "joe" chooses to not recognize it because then he/she would feel obligated to do something and that would mean actually taking an active part. What? I gotta actually DO something? Naw . . . let the government handle it . . . Smoke happy.
Originally Posted by Hajo Flettner
You are missing the point. In the U.S. a right exists in theory which says you something called "freedom of association" and if one takes the time to look into the matter it means that business owners as well the patrons have (well, had actually) a right to be around (or not be around) anyone they choose. In the old days people used to be able to go a place called "the non smoking section" if they wanted to be free of smoke. Likewise people that hated smoke had the option to attend restaurants owned by people that hated smoke and didn't allow it in their establishments. In other other words people got to do what suited them and be around the things they wanted to be around. These days if you own property (say a business) that is open to the public you can't decide to allow smoke in which means that you don't really have property rights.
These days no one has the right to be around tobacco in public because would be commissars have decided that their political agenda matters more then your rights of freedom of association.
In some areas of the states smoking is banned within 10 more feet of public buildings meaning that for all practical purposes you can't legally smoke outside. Other places ban smoking public parks. In some ares you can't smoke in duplexes or apartments by law. If you ever get into a custody battle and you smoke you stand a huge chance of losing your kids when all other things are equal.
The commissars have also have decided that since they don't approve of our use of legal products that they will tax them to such an extent that they can't be afforded by normal people. I recall that at one time Americans rioted and went to war to end taxes far lower on tea and stamps at a time when the tax burden was tiny portion of you face today. Clearly, Americans don't really care very much about freedom anyone more since it's just a bromide rather then something people understand or will fight for.
The fact that the American economy is melting down doesn't matter to the commissars. That is obvious when you think about the jobs lost in the tobacco sector and loss of sales tax revenue so in the end ideology trumps economics and your rights.
As to second hand smoke, well basically the science behind it is about as credible as the science behind the piltdown man (look it up!) but politically motivated. If you want to read up on check some of the material i've cited on the subject. I guess I could re-post some of it if the interest exists.