Monday, February 25, 2008

OHIO/CINNKY: Smoking Ban Loophole

TY got really excited over on the facebook when he found an article out of Minnesota about bar owners finding a smoking ban loophole -- saying that you are allowed to smoke if you are part of a theatrical performance. By dubbing everyone "actors," and the night a "theatre night," the bars started allowing limited smoking... apparently without problem.

The bar owners are practical -- "It increased my business," one said. Of course, the anti-smokers are already trying to close the loophole.

I think, first off, it creates some interesting philosophy of identity discussions -- aren't we all actors upon one giant stage, a la Shakespeare? But I can just see the movie scene: our well-dressed, dapper hero (think Keanu Reeves) enters a dimly lit, rural bar. Everyone is smoking. He asks the rough and tough grimy bartender (think Larry the Cable Guy, but, instead of funny, you meet him drunk in a back alley), tatoos up his hairy arms, what's happening, and the man responds gruffly: "We're actors. We're putting on a play. Can't you see?" Cue music: DANCING QUEEN.

Anyways, so I got really excited too, and went to find the Ohio smoking law (WARNING: PDF FILE), and there is not a similar loophole here. Sad :-(

The only exceptions to the smoking law are:

1) Private residences (but only if no employees are present)
2) Hotel and Motel smoking rooms
3) Family-owned businesses where all employees are family and the public is not welcome???
4) Nursing homes (somewhat -- fun story, employees of nursing homes can refuse care in smoking sections of nursing homes??? that's pathetic)
5) Pre-existing (before the law enacted) tobacco stores
6) Outdoor patios
7) Private clubs with no employees (so the freemasons...?) that are non-profit

It's actually a really tight, well written law.

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