Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A Smoke Free St. Louis

For New Years, I really wanted world peace, seeing as how that didn't really work out, I would settle for a Smoke Free St. Louis

Ever since St. Louis had the wisdom to shut down 64-40 for improvements (instead of investing in public transportation), I have been seeing a billboard on 44 for a smoke free St. Louis.
The ad basically says, "look at all of these other top tier cities that went smoke free, we can do it too," in a play towards St. Louis' inferiority complex.

I would love to see St. Louis go smoke free. It is always noticeable when I come am traveling in DC, NYC, Chicago, or (even) Cincinnati, when I can leave a bar and not smell like ash.

Businesses have always been skeptical of banning smoking because they see it as a threat to their business, people who drink smoke, people who smoke drink, if you take away the ability to smoke, they think, fewer people will drink, and we'll lose money.

The results, however, seem to be just the opposite. When Chicago (and all of Illinois) when smoke free, bar owners in Chicago shivered (in fear or declining revenues). But the data has come back and actually shows in increase in money spent at bars.

It seems like there are two main reasons that bars didn't lose out.

The first is that they attracted new people who wouldn't venture to bars before out of concerns about smoke. The second is that people can actually spend more than an hour or two in a smoke free bar, because they aren't being choked, their eyes aren't getting irritated, and they aren't worrying about having to dry clean their clothes to get the smell out.

Read more about the effort to make a Smoke Free St. Louis here.

Sign the petition here.

Read all about the results in Chicago here.

1 comment:

steveo said...

smokefree stl would be great. It will happen, someday.