Letters to the Editor

Page 4 of 5

I believe, as others also must, that our government should spend more resources (much more than it does now) on preventing criminals and (yes) employers from getting access to our private, personal and once-secure information than it spends on getting that same information for itself. Because otherwise, the government, I am sorry to say, is the criminal.

Leroy Quet

Pointed Criticism

The big sleep: Regarding Jason Sheehan's "A Beautiful Dine," in the January 30 issue:

I'm falling asleep reading Sheehan's articles. Get to the point!

Burt Wolf
via the Internet

Waiting to Exhale

Alternate reality: Regarding Jason Sheehan's Bite Me columns (most recently, January 30) on a possible smoking ban, I see how he could think that business would be hurt by not allowing smoking in bars (in particular). But in reality, this simply is not the case. Where I live, bars and restaurants are still packed to overflowing. Business is excellent. The only difference is the lack of smell. For a while, smoking was allowed in hotel bars (for the convenience of international guests), and I could not see that their business had increased during the period when they had an exclusive place for smokers. (Many bars and restaurants in California have patio dining where smoking is allowed, since it is technically outside.)

Samantha Hampton
Thousand Oaks, CA

Smoke 'em if you got 'em: Jason Sheehan's smoking articles are a breath of fresh air (pun most definitely intended). I myself am not an iron-lung-carrying smoker of three packs a day, but I do enjoy a cigarette while in the midst of the perfect cocktail. Or, as Teddy from Stand By Me so eloquently put it, "There's nothing like a good smoke after dinner."

I just wanted to let you know I thought Jason did a very good job of bringing out some very pertinent facts concerning the economy, other alternatives and how narrow-minded the Smoke-Free Denver folks truly are. Campaigns like this become nothing but a game between sides, each one using whatever makes it look good while portraying the other as the smoking Son of Satan.

I'll leave you with a quote from Mark Twain: "There are lies, damn lies, and statistics."

Chad Leake
via the Internet

War and peace: Perhaps an analogy might bring Jason Sheehan to an understanding of the other side of the smoking issue. He doesn't have to agree, but at least seeing the other side will help him argue his point more effectively.

Imagine yourself sitting in a small apartment, trying to sleep. You have to get up early the next morning. The guy above you decides to play his music loud enough that your walls are shaking. Suppose that music is the type you hate -- whether that be rap, heavy metal, country or elevator music. Imagine there are no laws protecting you against this intrusion. You talk to the guy, and he tells you that if you don't like it...leave. There are other apartments out there, and you can't infringe on his right to listen to his music. You feel as if his right is trampling all over your right to get some sleep.

I anticipate that Jason will argue that since you're in your home, it's different. Okay, so take the same scenario and now you are at the beach, hiking in the mountains, or doing some other activity where you would like to enjoy the surroundings.

I understand Jason's defensiveness. However, his personal insults and rash stereotypes do little to persuade me. I am pretty sure a ban on smoking in restaurants is a good thing. It really does ruin the taste of the meal, and I am concerned about exposing my daughter to smoke. I was undecided on the ban in bars. After reading Jason's articles, I'm thinking it might be a good idea.

I couldn't wade through all Jason's crap to find his true points. So I am under the impression that he just doesn't give a s--- about anybody else's rights but his own.

Stephanie Gee
via the Internet

Dangerous liaisons: I read Jason Sheehan's article on smoking and loved it. Too bad something cannot be done to stop these do-gooders! I, like Jason, smoke knowing full well the dangers. But driving in your own neighborhood can be dangerous, as is going out alone after dark. And then there are the foods or drugs that were great for you two years ago but are now bad for you. It really doesn't matter what you do; someone out there will find something "dangerous" about it. What are we to do?

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