Should Smoking Be Banned?

photo from UDel

The Quebec government has proposed a bill that would outlaw smoking on the terraces of all bars and restaurants in the province.

Comments were divided between:

This is great, I hate smokers and they shouldn’t be allowed to destroy their bodies while exposing others to toxic chemicals.

And

This is horrible, the whole point of the terrace is for smokers to be able to eat/drink and smoke.

And while both of these opinions have some merit, no one had the solution to this problem. One group wants a body of force to dictate a rule, a restriction, on every single person at every single bar and restaurant in the entire province. The other group suggests no alternative, and asserts their right to smoke on a terrace.

There is one very simple libertarian, voluntarily solution to this dilemma. No laws, no legislation, we simply let restaurants have rules on whether or not you can smoke on their property, and where specifically. Every establishment can determine whether or not it is a good decision for their business to allow smoking.

Family restaurants with terraces will probably ban smoking. Bars and places with an older crowd will probably not ban smoking, or have much looser rules regarding it.

The businesses have the option of changing their rules and adapting to what works best based on the response of their customers.

The customers have the option of choosing which places to support. If there is a market for family restaurants that allow smoking on their terrace then so be it. That family would be sitting indoors smoking at their home dinner table if they weren’t eating outside at that terrace. If there is a market for restaurants that have entire bans on smoking, then let that market develop itself without forcing EVERY SINGLE BAR AND RESTAURANT IN THE PROVINCE OF QUEBEC TO BAN SMOKING ON THEIR TERRACES.

It’s really that simple.

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