“The last Zipmail I read talked about the university’s plan to enforce the smoking ban on campus. Wondering if they were really going to enforce the ban, which prohibits smoking within 25 feet of doorways and in parking decks, I went out on Wednesday to test the waters.””
The last Zipmail I read talked about the university’s plan to enforce the smoking ban on campus.
Wondering if they were really going to enforce the ban, which prohibits smoking within 25 feet of doorways and in parking decks, I went out on Wednesday to test the waters.
So I bought my first pack of cigarettes and headed to campus.
My first stop was in front of ASEC, where I stood and smoked and was hardly noticed as I smoked less than 10 feet from the door. I hoped someone would say something. I even made it a point to blow smoke toward the entranceway. I even let out a few pitiful coughs.
Sadly, no one said anything.
My next stop was the Student Union, where I walked right by an ashtray to my post at the door. Still, nothing. No angry glares, no snide remarks, no ticket or fine. Nothing but another cigarette and the sudden urge to guzzle a gallon of water.
If this ban isn’t enforced, I wondered, what hope do we have?
Enforcing the ban is essential on campus — especially since, after all, it is the law.
Walking across campus, I also wondered about what effect enforcing the ban will have. Sure, it may keep smokers out of doorways, but they’re going to smoke somewhere. And where the cigarette receptacles are located, most people are going to have to walk past them regardlessly.
Plus, there’s always the person smoking in front of you as you walk. Enforcing the ban won’t have any effect on those things.
I smoked in front of Olin. I smoked in front of the College of Arts and Sciences. I smoked in front of Bierce. I even smoked in the Shrank parking deck, where I did finally receive a few strange looks.
Then again, I was hanging out in a parking deck and smoking a cigarette, not walking to a car or talking to anyone. I probably looked like I was about to mug someone.
No wonder I got strange looks.
I even went and sat on the steps of Buchtel Hall. I smoked one cigarette, then another. I was confident that if I was patient, the ban would be enforced.
Maybe, if I was there long enough, Proenza himself would walk out of the building and ask me kindly to move farther away from the entrance.
I sat waiting, hoping and yearning for someone – anyone — to stand up for the law.
But no one did. No one cared, or no one cared enough.
After all, smoking outside is smoking outside. Maybe they recognized the futility of it, or maybe they didn’t even notice.
In any case, the law was not upheld, and now I’ve got a sore throat. Not even a ticket, fine or anything else.
Plus, I’m out the cost of a pack of cigs.