Opinion: Campuswide Ban Suggested for Rude Smokers

Oksana Yurovsky ()

Oksana Yurovsky ()

I’m a non-smoker, but I don’t mind if other people smoke.  Everyone’s free to make his or her own decisions. However, I do mind when someone’s decision to have a cigarette affects me. 

Anyone who passes through the Quad knows why it’s called “smoker central.” At any given time, students are puffing away at cigarettes, either hastily between classes or leisurely with groups of friends.

But while DVC has designated certain areas for smoking – namely the Quad and parking lots – many smokers believe these rules don’t apply to them. 

Pick any non-smoking area on campus, and you’re bound to find someone hastily smoking a cigarette before class. The bench in front of the library steps is a popular place – right below a “No Smoking” sign. 

With such blatant disregard for school policy, it’s no wonder the Associate Students of DVC proposed a campus-wide no smoking policy last semester.

 Look, I get it: It’s fun to break the rules and stick it to “the man.” 

But there’s nothing rebellious about affecting someone else’s health by smoking in a place he or she counts on to be smoke-free. It’s selfish. 

While many non-smokers don’t mind being around those who do, others avoid it for very good reasons.  Some students suffer from asthma, migraines triggered by smells or allergies. And others just don’t care for it. 

While smokers certainly have the right to smoke, non-smokers also have a right not to be assailed by clouds of nicotine and miscellaneous chemicals. 

Of course, many smokers obey the rule. But if those who don’t continue to put their own needs first, a campus-wide smoking ban may not be far away.