Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A plea for puff-free bus stops

Respect: a required asset ensuring the peace and longevity of a small community. Out of respect for those lacking courage or ability to speak up, I am braving the question, "Why is smoking tolerated at Mountain Rides bus stops?"

The Mountain Rides bus system is a crowning asset that we should be able to totally respect. However, when we riders are frowned upon for wanting to breathe clean air on these buses, we feel very disrespected. I am not alone in voicing concern that this health-conscious, beautiful community allows the lethal act of smoking at bus stops but places "No idling" signs in front of stores. What's the difference? Both smoking and car idling fumes are lethal and should not be tolerated at public bus stops or in front of businesses—or anywhere, for that matter.

Smokers allowed to puff freely never feel the truth of smoking being wrong and unhealthy. People and animals have the right to breathe clean air and none was born holding a pack of cigarettes. Those forced to endure second-hand smoke are left with nowhere to flee. No one "appreciates" smoking—it's tolerated. Smokers are given a chance to quit smoking when their range of acceptable places to smoke is curtailed. Certainly, no one honestly believes that people love spending money making the pollution of smoking. Families of those who suffer the ill health of being forced to live in that environment are affected and are often shut down because they speak up. They should not be forced to endure smoking and its residue when they ride the bus.

Something needs to be done about this. I am concerned for the health of our community, those with whom we work and socialize, and especially all those who are not smokers who yearn for it to be curtailed at bus stops. 

I have proposed the following signs at the bus stops but have not heard back from anyone about this: "As a courtesy to our patrons, we ask that there be no smoking 15 minutes prior to boarding any Mountain Rides buses. All bus stops are therefore designated as nonsmoking areas. We appreciate your cooperation. Thank you."

The group Americans for Nonsmokers' Rights offers tools for people seeking information toward making their community smoke-free at

It would be truly an act of respect for its patrons and the community if Mountain Rides would make its bus stops smoke-free.

Tanya Hogan


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