Greg has a quick post covering a recent bill proposed in the DC city council. The councilwoman proposed a ban on public alcohol consumption using the same lines of reasoning as public smoking bans. Greg picked out a couple of good quotes:
Councilwoman Carol Schwartz, R-At Large, introduced her bill in response to a proposed ban on smoking in those same establishments. Her proposal imitates the arguments for a smoking ban, citing health concerns, worker safety and the nuisance of drinkers.
“I never thought I could ban drinking just because I didn’t like it, but now I know I can,” Schwartz said. “The impending smoking ban has empowered me.”
Several hours later, Schwartz pulled the bill, saying she had made her point. She hoped the incident would serve as a “wake-up call that once you start toying with people’s liberties, you never know where it might end.” …
“Let’s be honest, people are dying,” Schwartz said, mocking arguments from other council members on the smoking ban. “Pure and simple, drinking kills.”
Fellow council members Kathy Patterson and Jim Graham rolled their eyes and shook their heads.
“People are still free to drink at home – for now,” Schwartz said. But she said beverages at bars and restaurants should be limited to “tea, sodas and milk.
“And if the drinkers insist on drinking alcohol – and they will – they can just step outside on sidewalks with their flasks and drink.”
As I have mentioned before, I’m not a fan of the public smoking bans for a variety of reasons, but as long as it’s just states and and cities doing it I’m not going to get my boxers too much in a bunch over it.