Put that out cuz I said so!

If the law doesn’t save smokers from themselves, use cultural tyranny.

Last year, the University of Minnesota looked into enacting an outdoor smoking ban. Ultimately, the University decided against adopting the ban, citing, among other problems, difficulty in enforcement. The Duluth campus, however, is poised to reignite the campus smoking ban controversy by deciding to enforce their prohibition on smoking outdoors, which has been in place since the fall of 2007. According to Jackie Millslage, interim vice chancellor for academic support and student life, âÄúThere have definitely been groups of people that have ignored it.âÄù Well, thank goodness; smoking outside is still legal in the state of Minnesota. Police cannot issue outdoor smoking tickets. So how will the Duluth campus enforce its first-in-the-nation ban on smoking outdoors, which includes a ban on smoking in personal vehicles? They will assert cultural coercion with organized patrols. ThatâÄôs right; volunteer anti-smoking activists will ask their smoking peers to extinguish their cigarettes while offering them cessation literature. It has yet to be seen whether smokers will find any kindness in such overtures. If necessary, routine smokers will be punished under Student Conduct Code guidelines and staff and faculty will be reported to their supervisors. While enforcement specifics have yet to be announced, it doesnâÄôt take a genius to realize these confrontations could get heated. What will happen when a self-righteous patroller becomes frustrated with an obstinate and legally-informed smoker and grabs the cigarette from his or her mouth? As if the University of Minnesota didnâÄôt have enough financial problems, the Duluth campus appears to be craving a lawsuit over the power to protect individuals from deciding to smoke where the wind blows.