Letter: Parks smoking ban is heavy-handed

Published:

 

The Columbian editorialized July 26 ("Still deadly, still illegal") supporting the recently enacted smoking ban in Vancouver city parks, propagating the myth that this ban is "not a debate about personal liberty. It's a matter of public health." If true, why does this ban include e-cigarettes, which don't release any carcinogens into the atmosphere?

Instead of banning smoking in parks, why not enact a reasonable ordinance creating designated smoking areas in most parks? Admittedly, some parks are too small to make this work and a total ban in those parks is realistic. I am an ex-smoker who believes that most smokers will support a reasonable attempt to regulate smoking with a designated smoking area.

This heavy-handed ordinance is another step in the direction of the nanny state, regardless of what The Columbian says. Sooner or later, the state will come after your freedoms; witness the recent attempt by the city of San Francisco to ban male circumcision, the current attempt by the mayor of New York City to ban the sale of large-sized soft drinks, and attempts elsewhere to ban flying the U.S. flag. How many freedoms must we give up before we wake up?

Larry Froberg

Vancouver