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The world is becoming a smoke-free place. No longer can you imbibe in a post-dinner smoke in Boston, New York, LA, even Paris. Rhode Island has even banned smoking in all public beaches and parks. While I love the idea of a smoke-free world, I would like to do so politely, and allow people to come to their own terms with their addiction. I would not like to approach a smoker and tell them to butt out.
The University of Kentucky, along with 500 other schools, are going smoke free this fall. Which in itself is fantastic news. Sorry smokers, I don't want to inhale your toxic sludge. But, where the university gets it wrong is by putting smokers on blast.
The university is creating the biggest nerd-squad around and bringing hall monitors to college. A group of staffers and students at Kentucky are now patrolling the campus, hunting down smokers, approaching them and telling them to snuff it out, or they will be snuffed out.
Ok, not really the second part, but the first part for sure. They are then shoving anti-smoking literature down their throat.
Here is a better solution: Post information on where students can find health services or other counseling to quit smoking, along with No Smoking signs throughout the university. Send a blast email to the students at the beginning of the semester on the no-smoking policy, along with the information on how to stop.
This way you aren't alienating students who do smoke, and polarizing your campus. In reality, smoking is still legal, and things can go from cordial to fisticuffs quickly when you get in between a smoker and their cigarette. Moral of the story, if you are really going to approach a smoker, ask them nicely to stop and remind them it is a smoke-free zone.
Are you a smoker interested in quitting? visit http://www.smokefree.gov/ for information on how to stop. You could smell good, and taste great, in no time!
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