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Nicotine Nannies claim smoking bans are good for business. But if that were the case, could this list exist, and could it be so huge? (Please note, this is only a small sample of articles available on the subject.)

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Illinois smoking ban sours campus bar culture

 
Friday, February 1st, 2008

“I’ve been loving every minute of it,” said third-year Ashley Meyer wryly as she puffed on a cigarette outside Bar Louie. “You’re drinking your beer, and you have to leave it and go outside into this freezing blizzard.”

“I just don’t get this law,” she added. “I mean, people don’t go to bars for their health.”

Another frequent complaint among students has been the loss of a smoker culture that, until recently, cheerfully lived on in Chicago’s bars.

“It makes for a particular social bond, but now everyone’s having fun and you have to go outside in a self-imposed exile for 10 minutes. Sometimes you feel pathetic,” fourth-year John Elias said. (That is the real purpose of the ban, John.To make you a pariah and feel like a second-class citizen.)

The Cove has also seen a decrease in patronage as a result of the new act. Shawn Sleeper, a bouncer at The Cove, said the ban has resulted in a 25 percent decrease in sales at the bar, a number he attributes to patrons being less inclined to smoke out in the cold. But new problems may arise come summer.

“There’ll be more people out here, smoking, laughing, making noise and then the neighbors start complaining and that’s bad for business,” Sleeper said. He added that the Cove has already been hit with a number of fines for similar reasons in the past few years.

Christopher, a second-year who declined to give his last name, is an occasional bartender at The Cove and a frequent customer of neighborhood bars.

“Before, there were plenty of bars that were non-smoking,” he said. “And that was a choice you made before you went out. Unfortunately now, [the state] has taken the choice away from us.”

Lawmakers in other states have said they passed these laws out of concern not only for the non-smoking patrons of bars and restaurants but for the waitstaff and other employees who were forced to inhale the smoke of others. The latter claim in particular is one with which Christopher takes issue.

“Most people who work here smoke,” he said. “When I did bartend, I smoked a fair amount while I was working. It’s something that most employees participate in.”

But fourth-year Josh Hemley sympathizes with both sides of the debate.
“It’s nice to be in a bar without smoke in your face,” he said. “But I smoke too, so it’s like your mother telling you to eat your vegetables: It’s good and it’s bad.” (No, it’s just bad. It’s good when your mom does it. It’s bad when Big Brother Does it.)

Source: Chicago Maroon. Link

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