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WDAM Viewpoint- Laws to protect others

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February 4, 2011

I am often skeptical when either federal or state lawmakers start passing laws.  In my humble opinion too many laws are made to restrict freedom and give the government more control over our lives.  On the other hand, certain laws are needed and desirable

In order to protect people from being harmed by the actions of other people.  That is the case with a couple of laws that have been passed by the State Senate and are on their way to the House.  One is the law against text messaging while driving.  I don't want to be slammed into because some do-do was paying more attention to their key board than to the road.  Studies have proved that it is just as hazardous, perhaps more so in some cases, to text and drive as it is to drink and drive.  That's a good law. 

Another law on its way from the Senate to the House is a ban on smoking in all stated-owned buildings.  For years I was skeptical…but the science now seems clear that second hand smoke is definitely harmful to those who breathe it.  I choose not to smoke and I don't want anyone else's smoke in my lungs.  While I am frankly torn about the rights of business owners and their right to either allow or not allow smoking in their own place of business…there is no doubt that the state has the right and obligation to keep state institutions smoke free.  I hope both these bills pass the House and are reasonably enforced.  I'm Jim Cameron and that's my Viewpoint…as always, I'd like to hear yours.