Originally created 02/25/03

Alcohol-free restaurants better than smoke-free

Let me say to start with, that I do not smoke and have never smoked. I have read a lot of letters saying all restaurants should be smoke-free. Smokers have a right to eat out the same as the non-smokers. People say that the smell of smoke bothers them. I could say that the smell of beer and alcohol bothers me. I have a choice to visit those restaurants that serve alcohol or not to visit them. Same way with non-smokers.

I would like for some of those who write these letters to answer a question for me: How many times have you picked up a paper and read, or turned the TV on and heard, where Joe Customer sat down at XYZ Restaurant, ate a meal, sat there and smoked a cigarette, got in his car and, as a result of that cigarette, hit someone head-on on the highway and killed one or more? I have never read that. But you will hear or read where someone went out after a drink or two and killed someone as a result of DUI. So I ask, which is worse?

You hear no outcry about the alcohol that is served. In fact, people feel there should be more places allowed to sell alcohol. I think people have their priorities wrong. I wonder if it is because the social, political and, a lot of times, the religious worlds are built on alcohol?

No, I do not believe the commissioners should vote to make restaurants smoke-free, unless they are going to make them all alcohol-free.

Don Matthews, Augusta


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