I do not smoke cigarettes. Still, I say those who do certainly have the right, especially in the privacy of their own space. Health issues and social judgments aside, it’s legal, if nothing else. As such, I find this article in today’s New York Times absolutely appalling.
It’s one thing to ban smoking in enclosed public places, and some such prohibitions are sensible. However, the practices described in the NYT piece simply go too far. How dare any employer intrude upon the legal practices, however unhealthy, of any employee’s private life. As mentioned, smoking is not unique in terms of the damage most people do to their bodies and health in one way or another. Is there no end? Shall employers start passing up applicants who drink alcohol, eat fried food, or sleep around?
The nanny state, or at least the mentality thereof, often oversteps. This is yet another example of such behavior. As always, I believe in letting people do what they want to themselves, especially when it’s private and legal, and most certainly without threat to employment. In any case, it’s a smokin’ issue to consider, study and debate.
And that’s my opinion!