Double-secret cessation

Depending on the results of a Boynton Health Center and Office of Student Affairs survey, the University may implement an utterly misguided campus-wide smoking ban prohibiting smoking outdoors on University property. Scientific defense for the ban remains tenuous, with little research on the effects of outdoor secondhand smoke. A Stanford University study found that âÄúoutdoor smoke disappears shortly after the cigarette was finished.âÄù The same study found that moving six feet from a smoker reduces the quantity of particulate matter inhaled immensely. It seems the University is less driven to discover than driven to nanny. According to a recent survey, 4 percent of University undergraduates use tobacco (a category which includes non-inhalants) on a daily basis and 80 percent report they never use tobacco products. According to a 2007 Boynton survey, 13.5 percent of University students had used marijuana during the 30 days before the survey. The notion that the University could successfully implement and enforce a ban on a legal inhalant which a small percent of students use while it cannot prevent students from using an illegal inhalant is patently ludicrous. The University may be primarily targeting staff and faculty smokers. Smoking-related illnesses allegedly account for roughly 10 percent of the UniversityâÄôs health benefit expenditures âÄî $11 million. But employees will continue to light up in the car or at home, perhaps more so, increasing secondhand smoke where it poses a greater risk, especially for children. Health care expenses may increase. If the University wants to assuage its health benefit expenditures, it may as well start by prohibiting its employees from eating fast food on campus. Furthermore, if the University were to attempt to enforce an outdoor smoking ban âÄî which would undoubtedly call into question the boundaries on this sprawling campus âÄî it would waste resources and force students to light up in their residence, vehicle or off campus, thus unnecessarily putting their safety at risk while further straining police resources. Boynton and the Office of Student affairs are wasting funds and time on a survey used to support an unenforceable ban attempting to prevent a statistically minor and self-inflicted habit.