In another case of government overzealousness on their quest to mandate good personal health, the council of New York City in a 36-12 vote decided to ban smoking in the cities 1,700 parks and 14 miles of beaches. From the press release:
With this bill, all New Yorkers can now breathe easier and breathe cleaner air. No one should have to inhale deadly cigarette smoke when they go to a park or beach. My Council colleagues and I know that Big Tobacco will never rest in its efforts to recruit new smokers to replace those customers who are dying prematurely from using their products. But this summer, when people visit our beautiful parks and beaches, they will be able to relax and not worry about dodging deadly secondhand smoke.
Ignoring the argument about personal freedom, or the semi-paranoid claims about “recruiting” from Big Tobacco, I’m curious if people really think that banning smoking in parks wont just push people to smoke somewhere else. Like say the sidewalks, where there are far more people converged in a far smaller area and more likely to breathe in second hand smoke than in a public park.