So the smoking ban has been decided on and by summer 2007 students in bars around York and on campus will be unable to have a puff when they wish. But is this a just step forward for a healthier nation or just a further example of a developing nanny state?
I, for one, hold out Vanbrugh bar as an example where a compromise is currently made and should have been an option more closely examined. Smoking is allowed only in certain areas, and importantly not by the bar. Therefore people have the choice: if they want to smoke whilst they are enjoying a drink,then they can do this. However the option to enjoy a night in a cleaner enviroment is still there.This may even force smokers to abandon the habit for a night in order to spend more time with their non-smoking friends.
Ultimately it should be a matter of choice: first that of the owner of bars and pubs as to what they want their policy to be, and secondly that of the customer as to in what enviroment they want to send their night.
However this is now all a mute point: the ban is coming and we should accept this. Whether it is right that the government should force our hand is a personal moral decision. One thing we can be thankful for is that the post-night out laundry marathon due to smoke-stenched clothes, may soon be a thing of the past.