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In My Opinion: Smoking ban is Loyola’s right

A+student+lights+up+a+cigarette.+Loyola%27s+campus+is+now+non-smoking
A student lights up a cigarette. Loyola's campus is now non-smoking

A student lights up a cigarette. Loyola's campus is now non-smoking

TIFFANY KUDIWU/Photo Editor

TIFFANY KUDIWU/Photo Editor

A student lights up a cigarette. Loyola's campus is now non-smoking

Molly Mulroy

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In case you didn’t know, you’re not allowed to smoke on our campus anymore.

In fact, you’re not even allowed to chew tobacco or use e-cigs.

Tulane has been smoke-free for over a year now, and an organization called Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights reports that, since this past July, almost 1600 campuses across the country have similar policies.

But instead of celebrating Loyola’s decision to jump on the health-conscious bandwagon, many students are undoubtedly frustrated with the ban.

To be perfectly frank, Loyola’s new smoking ban isn’t one of those things that I feel very strongly about. We received an email about it over the summer (for those of you that don’t check your WolfMail), and I’m fairly certain that I skimmed it, nodded passively, and promptly deleted it.

But for many students, this is a really big deal. It’s an inconvenience, and many may argue that it infringes upon students’ rights.

On the other hand, Loyola is a private institution, and therefore has a right to enforce its own decided policies on its grounds.

If Loyola administrators decide to blast Kendrick Lamar in the Peace Quad every day, they have the right. And if they decide to encourage better choices for your lungs, they have the right to do that, too.

But still, shouldn’t students, as legal adults, be able to make their own health choices? The smoking ban is suffocating (no pun intended), kind of like your overbearing aunt who refused to give you a second glass of wine with dinner.

Is it paternalistic? Sure.

But it’s not paternalistic for the sake of paternalism. It’s verging on eye-roll-worthy, but Loyola understands that college is a really influential time. Neuroscientists and researchers across the country, including the National Institute on Drug Abuse, have found that young adults are particularly vulnerable to nicotine addiction.

Studies further show that teenage brains are more vulnerable to loss of cognitive function from exposure to nicotine, as evidenced in a study from the University of California in Los Angeles.

So maybe some of us would be happier if Loyola merely encouraged healthy habits — if the administration handed out flyers promoting vegetarian and gluten-free diets and discouraging tobacco use and underage drinking.

The thing is, Loyola isn’t going to expel you if they catch you with a cigarette. They’re not saying you can’t be a Loyola student by day and chain smoker by night (let’s be real: we live in New Orleans).

But they are saying they can use their rights as a private institution to encourage an end to smoking and to maybe improve some students’ health.

And while I don’t really have a dog in this fight, it is nonetheless a cause I definitely find worthwhile — even if I have to deal with a little paternalism along the way.

So you can continue heading over to Audubon or taking a stroll down Freret to pull out your American Spirits, or maybe you should consider leaving them on the shelf for a day or two. See what happens.

Loyola wants you to, anyway. And that’s fine with me.

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “In My Opinion: Smoking ban is Loyola’s right”

  1. jack listerio on September 4th, 2015 7:26 am

    OSHA also took on the passive smoking fraud and this is what came of it:

    Reference Manual on Scientific Evidence: Third Edition

    This sorta says it all

    These limits generally are based on assessments of health risk and calculations of concentrations that are associated with what the regulators believe to be negligibly small risks. The calculations are made after first identifying the total dose of a chemical that is safe (poses a negligible risk) and then determining the concentration of that chemical in the medium of concern that should not be exceeded if exposed individuals (typically those at the high end of media contact) are not to incur a dose greater than the safe one.

    So OSHA standards are what is the guideline for what is acceptable ”SAFE LEVELS”

    OSHA SAFE LEVELS

    All this is in a small sealed room 9×20 and must occur in ONE HOUR.

    For Benzo[a]pyrene, 222,000 cigarettes.

    “For Acetone, 118,000 cigarettes.

    “Toluene would require 50,000 packs of simultaneously smoldering cigarettes.

    Acetaldehyde or Hydrazine, more than 14,000 smokers would need to light up.

    “For Hydroquinone, “only” 1250 cigarettes.

    For arsenic 2 million 500,000 smokers at one time.

    The same number of cigarettes required for the other so called chemicals in shs/ets will have the same outcomes.

    So, OSHA finally makes a statement on shs/ets :

    Field studies of environmental tobacco smoke indicate that under normal conditions, the components in tobacco smoke are diluted below existing Permissible Exposure Levels (PELS.) as referenced in the Air Contaminant Standard (29 CFR 1910.1000)…It would be very rare to find a workplace with so much smoking that any individual PEL would be exceeded.” -Letter From Greg Watchman, Acting Sec’y, OSHA.

    Why are their any smoking bans at all they have absolutely no validity to the courts or to science!

    [Reply]

  2. jack listerio on September 4th, 2015 8:41 am

    Well a little history lesson is now needed I can see:

    Look who first invented the Passive smoking Fraud

    Hitler’s Anti-Tobacco Campaign

    One particularly vile individual, Karl Astel — upstanding president of Jena University, poisonous anti-Semite, euthanasia fanatic, SS officer, war criminal and tobacco-free Germany enthusiast — liked to walk up to smokers and tear cigarettes from their unsuspecting mouths. (He committed suicide when the war ended, more through disappointment than fear of hanging.) It comes as little surprise to discover that the phrase “passive smoking” (Passivrauchen) was coined not by contemporary American admen, but by Fritz Lickint, the author of the magisterial 1100-page Tabak und Organismus (“Tobacco and the Organism”), which was produced in collaboration with the German AntiTobacco League.

    That’s fine company are so called public health depts. keep with ehh!

    History can shed so much lite on todays own movement it just amazes the mind………..

    Hitler Youth had anti-smoking patrols all over Germany, outside movie houses and in entertainment areas, sports fields etc., and smoking was strictly forbidden to these millions of German youth growing up under Hitler.”

    [Reply]

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In My Opinion: Smoking ban is Loyola’s right