Smoke-free movement places Florida bars in business jeopardy |

Smoke-free movement places Florida bars in business jeopardy

Although I no longer live in Summit County, I still hold it close to my heart and keep abreast of the news.

After reading about the proposed smoking ban, I wanted to share my experience of what has happened here in Naples, Fla.

They enacted a smoking ban effective July 1, 2003. Since that time, I have stopped by several of the places I used to go to and don’t anymore because of the ban, and have found them literally empty.

I understand the issue of second-hand smoke, however, if you don’t want to be exposed to it, don’t go where it is. You have the right as an American to choose where you want to spend your money, as do the employees have a right to choose if they want to work there.

It’s really that simple. But that aside, where are all these people that fought so hard for the right to dine and drink in a smoke-free environment?

They most certainly are not patronizing the establishments affected. I am watching some of my favorite watering holes come perilously close to having to shut their doors because of the lack of patrons.

Just remember, these owners are your friends and neighbors, especially in such a closely knit community as Summit County. You are jeopardizing their livelihood. It really is a sad day when their American dream will literally “go up in smoke.”

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