[FoRK] Smoking mad...

Jeff Bone <jbone at place.org> on Tue Feb 5 17:26:55 PST 2008

On Feb 5, 2008, at 5:19 PM, Luis Villa wrote:

> On Feb 5, 2008 6:00 PM, Jeff Bone <jbone at place.org> wrote:
>> I reject the notion that an owner who allows uninvited guests on his
>> property for any reason --- even commercial --- has in any way ceded
>> his rights of control over his property and what happens upon it.  If
>> you assert that he *has* then you have created a new right for an
> Those rights, known as common carriage rights, have existed in English
> common law for not quite 700 years. And precursors date back to Roman
> law. These are not new rights.
> But hey, who am I to get in the way of a fine rant.

I reject the idea that "common carriage" applies to the kind of  
mutual and not-immediately-perilous consensual activities of a group  
of adults we're talking about here.  Again, would it change your  
argument we were talking about "private clubs" rather than "bars?"

You know, the real thing that makes me mad about this isn't actually  
the erosion of freedom.  This is just one more of the proverbial  
thousand paper cuts. No more or less worrisome than anything else,  
beyond the fact that it is such a *popular* erosion of freedom and  
the fact that its proponents apparently *cannot* understand (or at  
least admit) what it is that they're actually supporting (i.e., an  
act of tyranny, however well-intentioned and ultimately small...)

It's the sanctimonious, arrogant sense of "entitlement" (I'll damn  
well go wherever I want to go, fuck anybody else and what they want)  
and "righteousness" (well, fuck the smokers anyway, it's bad for them  
in the first place) and hypocrisy (what about *my* freedom to not  
smoke?) of the run-of-the-mill prohibitionist.  If they'd just step  
up and admit that this is what it is --- a small act of tyranny, an  
exercise of the coercive ability of the masses that ultimately  
benefits its proponents less than it negatively impacts its opponents  
--- I'd have a lot more respect for them.

At the end of the day the choice to support prohibition  
(specifically, of smoking in bars that are appropriately marked as  
allowing it --- I think that's a reasonable compromise vs. all the  
other designated non-smoking "public areas") is merely a choice FOR  
the collective, FOR popular fashion, and -- yes, FOR tyranny;  and is  
and therefore also a choice AGAINST personal freedom, rights, and  


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