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Resist ‘Boulderizing’ Summit County

Les CaplanFrisco

The Eagle County Commissioners’ recent ban on smoking in lift lines and just about everywhere else, and the inevitable move to do the same in Summit County, is not only completely unnecessary but clear evidence of the extreme leftward movement of local government.I have been skiing in Colorado for more than three decades, and I have never seen anyone smoking in a ski lift line or on a chairlift. Obviously a reporter who makes a concerted effort can probably find someone, somewhere, doing so, but it is so rare that a ban is simply a political statement and not related to public health. Besides, there is not a shred of scientific evidence that brief exposure to outdoor secondhand smoke presents any health risk whatsoever.In the Summit Daily News Jan. 10 edition, your reporter quoted one woman as saying she felt smokers were “stealing my mountain air.” I’ve been wondering who owns the mountain air, and now I know. What a brilliant statement! What she is really saying is other people should be branded criminals for personal conduct that she does not approve. Let’s get real, folks. This ban has little to do with smoking, which is clearly a non-problem for those who don’t smoke. Rather, it has everything to do with out-of-control political correctness and nanny government encroaching on individual rights. It’s easy to pick on the small minority of smokers who can’t fight back. But let’s not kid ourselves – this won’t stop here. It never does. If you support this law or simply look the other way because you don’t smoke, remember it’s just a matter of time until Big Brother controls every aspect of your personal life. When I recently moved to Summit County from the People’s Republic of Maryland, I believed locals here cared about freedom and limited government. But if the cancer (no smoking-related pun intended) that infects Eagle County spreads here – as I suspect it inevitably will – my brief optimism will be unfounded. I love living here for many reasons, and I urge everyone – particularly nonsmokers – to stand against the political tide and strongly resist “Boulderizing” Summit County. After all, if we don’t fight for other people’s rights now, who will fight for ours later?


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