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Reader feedback: Ban smoking EU-wide

Re: Let us decide, Volume 11, Number 15, April 18 - April 24, 2005

The smoking ban in the Republic of Ireland faced massive opposition when it was introduced. Ireland is traditionally a very pub-going nation and smoking was considered by many to be an integral part of that culture.

The ban there has been a resounding success. Many publicans who opposed the ban now admit that it has not affected their business in the least and that many people who before stayed away from pubs because of the smoky fug that hung over them are now enjoying what they have to offer.

Even many smokers are now glad of the ban because they are smoking far fewer cigarettes. In a country where a pack of 20 can cost anything up to €8.00, this is often very much appreciated, not to mention the health benefits.

But I'm not in favour of governments trying to tell people what they should and shouldn't do with their bodies. I think people know the risks attached to smoking and are capable of making an informed choice as to whether or not to smoke.

However, I don't think it's fair that because a minority of people wish to smoke, the majority should have to go home smelling like an ashtray.

I'm a smoker myself, and I say the sooner smoking is banned in public areas across the whole of the EU, the better.

Scott Lafferty,
Brighton, UK

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