County officials may put indoor smoking ban in voters’ hands

Even though a county legislator says residents should decide whether they want to ban indoor cheap cigarettes, some voters want no part of it.

A number of shoppers at South County Center last week said that while they understand the health benefits of a ban, they don’t like any part of it because it interferes with personal freedoms.

Carrie Niethe, of South County, says she agrees everyone should be able to voice their opinion about the Marlboro cigarette ban. As a smoker, she finds it inconvenient to have to go outdoors to light up, and she also thinks exemptions should be made for nightclubs, bars and casinos.

“But I do understand the health issues,” she said. “I don’t smoke in my home. And in restaurants, I can understand a ban. But when you’re at a bar, or you go out and listen to music, 90 percent of the people in a bar are going to smoke.”

Miriam Coffel, a South St. Louis resident and a 30-year smoker, calls the idea of a ban “ridiculous.”


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