Nothing to Cheer About

Posted on May 08, 2007
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We have been inundated with stories about the statewide smoking ban that went into effect last week. Reports indicated that patrons cheered at some establishments when the ban became effective on May 1st. The Arizona Republic noted, The air in the Valley just got a little bit clearer, at least inside.

But the law was never really about breathing healthy air. It was about a majority imposing its will on an unpopular minority. And its not the smokers I'm talking about.

Bar and restaurant owners invest time, money and energy determining how they will operate their business. I wonder if those cheering would be willing to prohibit other things in drinking and eating establishments that bother them or may impact ones health. What about loud music? Dim lighting? Of course, banning certain foods is just around the corner.

When a majority decides that it can infringe on the property rights and business decisions of another person, we set a dangerous precedent. Its the kind of thinking that leads to private property being taken for another persons private use, as was allowed in the Kelo v. City of New London U.S. Supreme Court case. And thats nothing to cheer about.

Key Links
-Goldwater Institute: Clearing the Air on the Smoking Ban
-Arizona Republic: Smoking ban met with cheers, defiance in Valley
-Goldwater Institute: Kelo v. City of New London Amicus brief

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