Smoking bans 'pointless'

Last updated 05:00 27/07/2013
WHY BAN?: If a group of consenting adults want to gather in a park and kill themselves slowly, let them, writes Ray McKeown.

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My stand on smoking bans

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Our readers give their views on banning smoking in public places. Necessary or nanny state?

As a non-smoker getting rid of smoking is a great idea. On the other hand as a libertarian I don't believe people should be prevented from doing things that are not harming others. That means I can support smoking bans inside and even outside when others can be affected by second hand smoke.

It seems pointless to ban smoking when no one else is present or all those present are smoking or agree though. If a group of consenting adults wants to gather in a park and kill themselves slowly, let them.

The other thing that made me laugh about the Auckland Council rule was that there was apparently no sanction for breaking the bylaw. Setting any form of rule and not enforcing it is a ridiculous joke. It just makes the law look like an ass.

If we want to get rid of smoking, and I don't think we'll ever get rid of it completely, the best way is price rises and support for those giving up using the taxes collected from those who smoke. Just keep the price low enough to avoid an illegal black market getting too developed and high enough to hurt.

Generally speaking banning things is a waste of time anyway. All it does is create a ready market for criminals. After all the ban on drugs has not been a great success has it?

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