"A growing number of local authorities and other organisations are exploring ways of providing more smoke-free public places in response to public demand. Football grounds and railway stations are already smoke-free, and increasingly children's play areas are going smoke-free too."Yes, do you remember those huge popular movements calling for smoking to be banned at the far end of platform 2 at Preston railway station? The huge flags football fans waved - in between hurling foul-mouthed abuse at the opposition goalie - to force the Football League to make grounds smokefree? And the national letter-writing campaign by Mumsnet to the government over playground smoking? What's that? You didn't?
Well of course not, because the railways ban was snuck in around the time of the smoking ban under a byelaw inserted by Network Rail or whoever, no public were involved. Brian Mawhinney caved in to anti-smoking lunatics to enforce an unnecessary ban at football matches which is so 'popular' that it's still causing problems in every stadium toilet in the Premiership and Football League. No-one asked for it except lobby groups like ASH and their health fascist friends. And 'voluntary' playground bans are always introduced by dickhead local councillors trying to get their daft legislation - along with a pic of their dozy mug and sad comb-over - into the local rag.
There has been no 'public demand' for any of it, unless you count the public's money that ASH uses to 'demand' bans which have fuck all to do with health.
"Smoke-free beaches could provide a safe and pleasant environment, particularly for children ..."Beaches are already a safe and pleasant environment, Debs, this ban won't change that one iota, and you know that. Oh yeah, and no prohibitionist tobacco control industry diktat is ever complete without mentioning the children, now is it?
"... but also for adults who want to avoid exposure to second-hand smoke ..."Which is, of course, not dangerous inside, let alone on a beach surrounded by billions of litres of constantly moving air. Again, she is well aware of this, but likes to mention it knowing that the stupid, the hideously intolerant, and the certifiably insane in society will lap it up and - respectively - believe they are about to die, make plans for beating up a smoker, or scream and rant next time they think they see anything that looks like it might be smoking. Most probably an e-cig which will inevitably also be banned to save confusion amongst the knuckle-scrapers in our midst.
Nice work, Debs, you're a huge ally to vapers and no mistake.
"... as well as reducing the amount of cigarette butt litter on beaches, which doesn't degrade quickly and is harmful to wildlife."This, incredibly, is about the only argument which holds water. However, it is a litter problem, not a smoker problem. The answer would be to encourage smokers to dispose of butts responsibly, maybe hand out portable ashtrays or provide more bins. People leave cans, bottles and food packaging on beaches too, is Arnott really so thick and rancidly anti-enjoyment that her answer would be to ban picnics for everyone? On this evidence, apparently so. Finding solutions which preserve liberties - if that is even a consideration for ASH, that is - is difficult, you see, whereas demanding bans is simple.
Having said that, I'm glad we have yet more proof that nothing ASH does has ever had anything to do with health.