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News Summary

Editorial: No smoking, please

Publication Date: 2014-12-15
  • Publication:Oklahoma City Journal Record

...On Monday, a survey of nearly 2,000 Oklahomans revealed that nearly 80 percent prefer smoke-free bars and nightclubs. Three-fourths of the smokers surveyed said even they prefer a smokeless venue.

That makes it hard for bar and nightclub owners to keep up the argument that a statewide smoking ban on indoor public places would run them out of business. To the contrary, the survey suggests they would attract even more customers were they to go smoke-free.

Ninety percent of those surveyed said they were aware of the health hazards posed by secondhand smoke, knowledge that might be playing a role in Oklahomans' apparent preference for cleaner indoor air.

Oklahoma wears its market-driven, less-government-interference badges like medals of honor. But the Legislature also has an obligation to protect the welfare of the state’s residents...

Gov. Mary Fallin took a commendable step in 2012 when she made all state property smoke-free. The Legislature can follow by repealing the pre-emption of stricter local smoking bans or, even better, by passing a statewide ban on indoor smoking in public places. Taxpayers will win. The state budget will win. Our children will win.

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