Law would ban smoking in cars with children


Still more smoke-banning hocus pocus...

A bill introduced today in the state legislature would outlaw smoking in cars with kids inside. (Yeah, we get it: "Think of the children!") The penalty would be a moving a violation, subject to a $100 fine. To be fair, it would constitute a "secondary violation," meaning you would have to be pulled over for something else--like, say, talking on your cell phone or being African American--to get written up.

From the Strib:

The bill's House author, Rep. Nora Slawik, is bracing for a fight that could reprise the battle over the 2007 Freedom to Breathe Act, which banned smoking in bars and restaurants.

"I haven't heard any objections yet, but I'm sure it's coming," Slawik said. "That's just part of being a legislator."

Okay, Nora, we'll bite. While clearly good-intentioned (as nonsense typically is), your bill raises an obvious question, which is: If the problem is merely secondhand smoke exposure to kids, why confine the ban exclusively to motorized vehicles? Why not--in one preposterous, self-righteous, overzealous sweep--outlaw tobacco-smoking in all situations in which someone under 18 is standing, let's say, within 20 feet of the smoker... whether it be in a car or home or bus stop or lynch mob?

Unfortunately, your desperate-for-pet-issues-of-their-own colleagues would probably read this, stroke their chins, and mutter, "Y'know, that's not a bad idea."

Here, read this.