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Letter: Smoking Ban Enforcement Lacking on Solano

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Last night my wife and I were walking up Solano Avenue with our children when we encountered a man sitting on a park bench smoking. When we informed him of the , his first response was to tell us he was just holding it. He then grew more belligerent with us, inviting us to call the police and then resorting to profanities.

We walked away. Then, in the next alley, we encountered another person smoking within five feet of the sidewalk. 

These encounters are very common on Solano Avenue. I am on these streets quite a bit running errands or taking a walk with my children. I almost always see at least a couple people smoking but nothing being done to prevent it. 

I also don’t know what can be done to try to enforce the law posted in the window of nearly every shop on Solano. Our comments to the man last evening certainly did nothing to help. 

Are we ? If this law goes unenforced, what is the point of all the signs? This is a public health issue. 

I do not want my children breathing in secondhand smoke, especially in an area that specifically prohibits it. But, with the hostile response we witnessed last night, I’m not sure what the right action is.

Tanya March 23, 2012 at 08:20 PM
My best friend died of lung cancer at 57 years old; he tried but couldn't quit. My husband, who has never smoked, had a lung lobe removed last year and chemo due to lung cancer (diagnosed at 52 years old); his doctors attribute his disease to second-hand smoke. He has about a 37% chance that it WON'T come back in 5 years. This is a public health issue, and while I strongly sympathize with the smokers, who are physically addicted (I've been told that nicotine addicts faster than cocaine, though it is the latter that is more dangerous), it's not fair to expose others to this deadly carcinogen. Public smoking has to go.
Tanya March 23, 2012 at 08:33 PM
I belong to Kids and Tobacco; check out: http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/ and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-m9arDwWaI&feature=share
AKM March 24, 2012 at 11:48 PM
I think it is fantastic to want to be as healthy as possible, but I believe a lot of you are going overboard. While smoking is terrible for you, I disagree that you're all going to die of lung cancer because you encounter the seldom smoker on the street. You're OUTSIDE!! The smoke disipates, meaning you don't inhale nearly as much as you think you are. I also thinks it's ironic that you spend all of this time worrying about second hand smoke while you freely walk up and down a street with cars and buses spilling toxic fumes into the air for you to inhale. What's next? Should we ban cars on Solano?
John Doh! March 25, 2012 at 02:07 AM
If a law was passed that banned cars on Solano, I'd say that it should be enforced too. I think many people are simply annoyed with smokers who flaunt the law. It's a drag to be walking behind someone who leaves a cloud of smoke lingering for the next person to walk through.
lindy April 04, 2012 at 01:53 PM
I do believe that getting robbed is far worse than experiencing second hand smoke, But the police can determine when they need to get to the scene of a crime..especially when people are in danger of injury. I really really hate second hand smoke. I will go an get one of those signs! wonder why they aren't just distributed?

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