Ireland and the US were perpetually referenced prior to the smoking ban, just as Canada and Iceland were in forcing through idiotic tobacco display ban legislation. But always on the lookout for 'the next logical step', these tedious tossers are running out of loony, self-defeating states to emulate.
They could follow Bhutan, I suppose, but even hideous bigots must realise that following such a nasty dictatorship's stunningly harsh line will win them far more enemies than friends.
So step forward Honduras, who I'm sure we will hear a lot more about in the future. The
Honduras law lets police be called on home smokersBingo! They've found a way to unlock the private front door and punish their citizens in their own homes - simply encourage a family member to rat.
TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras (AP) — The last refuge is vanishing for besieged smokers — at least in Honduras. A new law that took effect Monday says family members can call in the police on people who smoke at home.
The new measure bans smoking in most closed public or private spaces and orders smokers to stand at least six feet away from nonsmokers in any open space.
The law explicitly bans smoking in schools, gas stations, nightclubs, restaurants, bars, buses, taxis, stadiums and cultural centers but it doesn't clearly ban smoking at home.
A clause, however, expressly says relatives or visitors can summon police to deal with smokers at home: "Families or individuals may complain to law enforcement authorities when smokers expose them to secondhand smoke in private places and family homes."
I can imagine ASH's Shoreditch HQ is buzzing at the potential here. The UK has been softened up perfectly in the past decade or so with any number of snitch-lines, grassing is now an perfectly acceptable pastime thanks to New Labour. If they're unnamed, even better ... the state does so love an anonymous complainant these days.
And this is a solution which would very handily circumvent the inconvenient British trait of naturally abhorring anyone who dictates what they do in their own homes, as articulated by NHS Health Scotland in 2009 (source pdf here).
On the one hand the home is a private space and there is some resistance found in the ethical debates inherent in public health literature to the blurring of the public/private boundary for smoke-free public health interventions. This is often articulated by libertarian arguments advocating the rights of smokers in their own home and opposing perceived encroachment of the State into private space.They were obviously not thinking as imaginatively as their counterparts in a confused Central American backwater, were they?
Predictably, the unelected WHO think it just doesn't go far enough.
But while [Armando] Peruga, [a program manager at the World Health Organization's Tobacco-Free Initiative], praised the measure as "a positive law," he said the clause allowing family members to call police on their smoker relatives is confusing. The clause "does not make much sense since the law clearly does not prohibit smoking at homes."Now, I hate to cast aspersions willy-nilly, but we are surely living in times where certifiably insane people are being allowed to wander free, and unsupervised.
"It seems its intention is to educate by way of complaints, a move that I do not find very feasible," Peruga said.
I vaguely recall another administration in history which advocated family members reporting on each other, but it escapes me for the moment. It's on the tip of my tongue, it was ...