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EDITORIAL: A gutter ball for smoking opponets

Publication Date: 5/26/2005
  • Author:EDITORIAL
  • Publication:Princeton (NJ) Packet
State legislators won't score a strike if they pass up the opportunity to enact a statewide smoking ban.

Just when we thought we had heard every conceivable argument ­ from the vaguely legitimate to the totally ludicrous ­ against the proposed statewide ban on smoking in public places, the Bowling Proprietors' Association of North Jersey and Southern New Jersey has served up a proverbial gutter ball.

When the members of the New Jersey Legislature next arrive at their offices in Trenton, they will find 120 bowling shoes awaiting them ­ one for each lawmaker. This is meant to symbolize the proprietors' insistence that their establishments be exempt from the proposed smoking ban. . . .

Here's a suggestion for our legislators. As you ponder the message sent to you in the form of a bowling shoe, ask a physician in your district to send you an X-ray of a lung ravaged by cancer, or a heart damaged by scar tissue, or a carotid artery constricted by a blockage. Compare these images to that bowling shoe, and then decide which one makes a more persuasive argument regarding smoking in public places. Then, pass the ban. Not only is it long overdue, but now the arguments against it are reaching the point of sheer absurdity.