Tuesday, August 26, 2003


A lot of libertarians seem to get their knickers in a knot over the ban on most smoking in public by New York Mayor Bloomberg. They seem to think that the policy violates some “right” to smoke. But if person X has a “right” to smoke, then person Y has a “right” to breathe clean air. But the two “rights” are obviously in conflict. The only way to give the maximum freedom to both parties is then to segregate them -- which is what Bloomberg is doing -- perfectly libertarian in my view. Smokers see it all as unfair only because (being addicts) they are so used to trampling over the liberties of non-smokers who would like to breathe unpolluted air.


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