Portland Community College, the largest higher education institution in the state, already cordons smokers off into smoking-permitted ghettos. Now it’s banning all forms of tobacco use on its campuses, indoors and out. This includes chewing tobacco. Why? Take it away, Preston Pulliams:
“This was the right thing to do,” said President Preston Pulliams in a prepared statement. He said research findings on the risks of exposure to secondhand smoke are “too compelling to not act.”
Meanwhile, Crispy co-blogger Baylen got a not-so-warm reception at his new digs at the University of Arkansas:
I was informed the other day, while walking on a sidewalk with a cigarette in hand on the University of Arkansas campus, that such an act–or chewing tobacco–is subject to a $500 fine. That’s smoking. Outside. Not near any person or building. $500.
People, there’s no evidence, compelling or otherwise, that passing a smoker on a sidewalk is going to do anybody any harm. There’s definitely no evidence that passing a person chewing tobacco is dangerous. Yet academic institutions around the country have bought into this nonsense in their zeal to harass students whose lifestyle they disapprove of, and in doing so they introduce thousands of young people to the idea that merely seeing a person smoking a cigarette is an infringement on their rights. We deserve better from the supposedly open-minded environment of academia.