Yes, even tobacco states can go smokefree. North Carolina, which produces about half the country’s tobacco, according to The Washington Post, went smokefree on Jan. 2. That includes bars as well as restaurants, making it a stronger law than Virginia’s (that state allows smoking in separately ventilated areas). (Note that many localities in Kentucky, also a major tobacco state, have smokefree bars and restaurants.)
Predictably, a North Carolina smoker interviewed by the Post complained about having his rights taken away. But, as Hugh Holliman, a member of the North Carolina legislature noted, no one’s right to smoke is touched by smokefree laws.
“This law doesn’t tell anybody they should’t smoke,” he said. “It’ saying non-smokers should have the same right to breathe clean air.”
Amen to that.